Gardening helps us with Mental Illness. FACT!

Why do I grow vegetables?? It gives me hope!!

Do I grow vegetables and fruit and flowers to save money?
Do I grow them to keep up with the Jones's?
Is it the "Buzzword" at the moment?

None of the above for me I'm afraid! I grow vegetables and I garden because it keeps me sane people.
Granted I don't have the "official cert" to say Im sane and I bet a few of you that know me will say otherwise!
But the reason most people get down and dirty in their veg patch is because it is good for the mind -your mental health and your physical well-being.
 This is a FACT as proven by research and gardening is being used more in therapy helping people with mental health issues.
The last few years have been difficult for a lot of us,myself included. I myself have suffered from mild depression and there have been some very dark days.Days where you sit looking out at the wet wet weather and cant muster the energy or will power to get your ass off the chair to do anything. Days where you look in the mirror and you cant see yourself. The famous Recession has been a hard life lesson for us all. And there are times when I have felt like I have failed. Failed at what, I dont know. Failed at life maybe I thought. I kept looking for that strong funny guy called Sean I used to know. Nobody knew. I can hide it. But I got help. I did mindfulness( which is brilliant) So no more hiding. Lets remove the stigma.
So how does a boring oul garden help??
 Go for a walk and you see a little daffodil showing its green head through the soil or a new bud starting on a branch of a tree. And you feel HOPE. Spring is coming, lets get up and at them.

You wander out into your garden and can hear the laughter  from the kids running around like a calf thats been stuck in the shed all winter. You smell the new cut grass smells that remind you of  last Summer and think, its on the way again. Even if the current state of your garden with its long uncut grassy hair and the odd trampoline upside down from the storm doesn't make it the Chelsea show garden that you knew last Summer.
The sun pops out and you feel the heat. Lawn mower out and after about 10 pulls she fires up. Grass cut after about 20 empties of the grass and you get that hopeful feeling again. And where does this feeling come from? Your Garden.

So this is my research- it makes me feel better. If I have a worry or a problem I get out there and do some weeding or watering its gone after a few minutes. And what better place to sit and meditate or practice your mindfulness.
So what can you do to get going at this free therapy? Sow something , anything at all. It may be some lettuce or some spring onions. One little pot of salad. If you fail start again Let it takes it time growing and sprouting. Imagine a little dry looking seed that gets a bit of water and soil and heat and light comes to life. Hope again springs to mind.
I am not even going to try and sell you anything in this post because I want to spread the word that any of us can feel down and have feel depressed and that it is a mental illness. Just the same as diabetes is a physical illness.  I am passionate about growing and I know that my garden doesn't need to be an award winning one or it doesn't need to be perfect or tidy for me to get enjoyment from it.
So get into your garden -you wont regret it.
Click here for some info on what to sow etc.