But I don’t have a green thumb, there are gross worms, and I don’t like getting dirty anyway! I have heard so many reasons from people why they don’t have a garden. Here are five reasons that everyone should have one—even if you think your thumb is as black as dirt.
This is the reason many people have a garden and it certainly is a good one. With fuel prices rising, and crop problems around the world, being able to produce food in your own backyard is one of the best ways to supplement your food supply.
Not only will you be more self-sufficient in one area, but the resources that are freed up from buying food can be redirected to other areas to help you balance your personal budget and meet your other financial or preparedness goals.
Did you know that dirt can make you happy? Dr. Christopher Lowry published research linking contact with the micro-organisms in the dirt with improvements in your mood. And gardening is even a recognized therapy for depression.
So, rather than turn to habits like shopping, playing video games, or drinking (which after a temporary boost will make you feel worse), how about planting a few seeds and watching them grow instead? Not only will you feel better, you will be doing something productive that helps your family at the same time.
We live in a world that is going a million miles a minute. With everything constantly “on” in the background and electric lights telling our bodies it is day time all the time, it can be hard to even keep track of the days of the week. When you commit to being a gardener, you commit to being aware of what is around you in the real world. Suddenly you notice where the sun is and when. You start to see the subtle differences in soil, and actually appreciate that a wriggly worm is actually your garden helper. If you are anything like me, you will probably start to see that greater sense of awareness spill into other areas of your life. Your kids smiles start to mean more as you become more aware of the passing of a year. Each rain and each sunshine have their own special joy. You can take time to smell the roses.
Gardening is rarely an effort that happens in isolation. Even the smallest child will love to pick up a spade and dig, or carry the watering can for you. Suddenly you might find you have a new common goal with your spouse. And of course, once you harvest the abundance of produce, you will be able to share with all your friends and neighbors to show your love and build good will.
Extra garden harvests could also open up more opportunities for bartering.
Creating and nurturing your own garden will not only improve your mental health, it can improve your physical health as well. You will now be able to know exactly what it is that you are putting in your body, without all the added chemicals and genetic modifications.
The work of planting, caring for, and harvesting your garden also provides your body with exercise that can be fun and motivating. You may even lose a few pounds as a result of the better food and more activity.
Gardening does not have to become a second full time job. Start little, and you will want to keep expanding each year as you experience all the joys of having your own garden. Even if you have limited space, you can start an indoor container garden. Or if that is still too much, then try sprouting or an herb garden to get your growing efforts going. And if you want something pretty and edible too, try some edible flowers. Resolve that you will start somewhere, because there are just so many things you will be missing out on if you don’t!