5 things to do in the mindful garden in April to improve your wellbeing
4 minute read
The benefits of gardening and food growing for health and wellbeing are widely spoken about and researched.
By practicing gardening for mindfulness you can relieve stress and anxiety, boost your mood and improve your wellbeing.
The following mindful gardening for wellness activities can be done in the April garden as Spring really starts, to help you connect with Mother Nature and feel calmer and happier.
Before you start the activity, notice how you are feeling on a scale of 1 to 10, where 1 is low energy, stressed and anxious and 10 is energised and calm.
Once you have completed the exercise, check in with where you are on the scale again.
Cut back last years foliage on your perennial plants- 5 minutes
With secateurs in hand notice the feeling as you snip through the base of last years stems. What can you hear? What can you see emerging beneath last years foliage?
Add your clippings to the compost heap to break down and create next years mulch.
Thin out any direct sown seedlings- 5 minutes
Seeds sown direct into the soil in March may be showing their true leaves towards the end of this month. The plants will start to need some more space to grow, so this is the time where you thin them to the distance given on the seed packet.
Grab an unwanted seedling between your thumb and forefinger, pluck it from the soil and add to your compost bin.
Sow pumpkin and squash seeds- 20 minutes
These large flat seeds need lots of space, so sow one seed per 9cm pot.
Add the compost to the pot leaving about 1cm between the top of the compost and the rim of the pot.
Make a hole in the centre of the compost and place the seed in on its side. This will prevent any water from sitting on top of the seed and rotting it!
Put on a warm windowsill or in a greenhouse and keep the compost moist.
Tie in climbing plants to their supports as they start to grow - 20 minutes
As the weather warms you'll see your clematis, honeysuckle and climbing roses start to grow at a somewhat alarming rate!
Take some twine and tie the new growth into the supports you have in place. This is a fiddly job but will help to support the plant stems as the flowers grow, so you don't end up with floppy flowers! A really good mindful gardening activity to lose yourself in as your mind really has to concentrate as you focus on securing each individual stem and can't start wandering on to other jobs on your to-do list!
Plant out main crop potatoes straight into the ground- 60 minutes
Main crop potatoes are those that can be harvested in autumn and stored overwinter. Due to their larger size they provide more bountiful harvests of larger potatoes when grown in the ground as opposed to in a pot or bag.
Dig a 12cm wide trench focusing on the sound of the spade slicing through the soil. What can you hear?
Place your potato tubers into the trench 35cm apart and backfill using your hands. As you move the soil bring some to your nose and breathe in the earthy scent. What does it remind you of?