Horticultural Therapy

Gardening Opportunities in the Time of COVID-19

Here’s an excellent article on things to do in the garden even as the Covid-19 has you under lockdown, from the people at the National Garden Bureau.

Your yoga classes, meetings, and concerts are canceled. The kids are out of school and you’re being encouraged to stay home?

In this time of #Covid-19, here are a few suggestions to cultivate something good.

  • Start some seeds. Nothing is more life-affirming than checking each morning to see if something spouted.
  • Plan a vegetable garden. Grow the veggies you love the most. Read about which varieties to plant from seeds and which ones are better if you purchase plants. Consult garden blogs and books.
  • Plan to grow flowers that make you happy. Suggestions: sunflowers, nasturtiums, zinnias or marigolds. These are #EasyFromSeeds and you can grow many plants for less money.
  • “Buy Local” Some garden centers are offering curbside pickup so you can place your order for plants and then pick them up at the store, keeping social distancing in mind but still fulfilling your need to buy plants.
  • Redesign the plantings in the front of your house. Research plants that grow well in your area, and make a plan for spring renewal.
  • Take an online class about plants or gardens, or watch some YouTube instruction videos. Learn about seed starting, taking cuttings, or how to grow vegetables.
  • Plan an herb garden. What herbs do you like to cook with? Which herbs make the best cocktails or tea? If you don’t have in-ground space, grow herbs in pots. #foodies #aromatherapy
  • Pull out the garden or plant books you bought in the past and read them … maybe for the first time! Revisit those copies with lovely garden photos and be newly inspired.
  • Take a walk in a nearby natural area: woods, field, desert, beach or park. Look closely at leaves, bark, mosses, and flowers. Notice the number of plants that grow in a community. Look up, look down.
  • Take this time to groom or repot houseplants. Remove dead leaves, refresh the soil, take cuttings of favorites so that later you can share the wealth with friends.
  • Go to online seed and plant companies and learn about varieties you’re not familiar with. Join plant or garden groups on social media. Search for posts about the flowers and plants you see listed.
  • Order a new book about plants or gardens. Once it arrives, hold a #GardenRetreat hour or afternoon. Sip your favorite beverage, read and make a list of garden inspirations.
  • What plants remind you of family members or friends? Write those memories down. Consider turning those recollections, along with photos of the plants and people, into a small book that can be passed to others in your family.
  • Decide to plant a tree. Research which varieties grow well in your area. Look to see where you have the right amount of space and sunlight.
  • Create a new indoor display of plants. Make a row of small pots in bloom on your kitchen counter or the windowsill above your sink. Move an unused side table in front of a window or slider, creating a new place for plants.
  • Plan a new group of containers for your deck, porch or patio. Flowers, herbs, and vegetables await your creativity … go for color, fragrance, and flavor.
  • Help to get a young person out into the natural world. Plan a garden for your kids or grandchildren. Donate supplies to a local children’s garden or school garden.
  • Plan a garden vacation. Decide on an area of the country, and research public gardens, national parks, and plant destinations that are in the region.

View found time as a #PlantingOpportunity, keep it  #GardenStrong and #LifeAffirming.

The National Garden Bureau is a proud and supportive member of Garden Communicators International. We thank author C.L. Fornari, GardenComm member, for the above tips. If you are a professional garden communicator, information about joining this group can be found on their website.

Larry Hodgson is one of Canada’s best-known garden communicators. He has notably been editor-in-chief of HousePlant Magazine, Fleurs, Plantes et Jardins, À Fleur de Pot and Houseplant Forum magazines and is currently the garden correspondent for Le Soleil and radio garden commentator for CKIA-FM Radio. He has written for many garden publications in both the United States and Canada, including Canadian Gardening, Harrowsmith, Horticulture, Fine Gardening and Organic Gardening. He also speaks frequently to horticultural groups throughout Canada and the U.S. His book credits include The Garden Lover’s Guide to Canada, Complete Guide to Houseplants, Making the Most of Shade, Perennials for Every Purpose, Annuals for Every Purpose, and Houseplants for Dummies, as well as nearly 60 other titles in English and French. He is a past president of the Garden Writers Association (now Garden Communicators International) and the winner of the prestigious 2006 Garden Media Promoter Award offered by the Perennial Plant Association. He resides in Quebec City, Quebec, Canada.

2 comments on “Gardening Opportunities in the Time of COVID-19

  1. I was behind schedule on the vegetable garden before this all started. . . . and I am still not caught up. The new garden needed to be cleared of a thicket of bramble. Anyway, we did not save seed for everything we want to grow, but fortunately, we we want only the simple varieties that I can get at the seed rack in the supermarket! Some seed companies are not too overwhelmed to still send out warm season vegetable seed, just in case we want something that I can not get from the supermarket.

  2. Pingback: Why Your Plants Make You Happy – Laidback Gardener

Leave a Reply

Sign up for the Laidback Gardener blog and receive articles in your inbox every morning!

%d bloggers like this: