Being in nature is a sure way to boost endorphin levels and dopamine production, which promotes happiness. Luckily for us Buffalo is a place surrounded by nature trails and wooded areas that make getting into nature so easy! On top of that, Buffalo is also home to America’s largest garden walk which showcases the incredible gardens of our neighbors that make up this city. Not only does gardening create beautiful scenery, but this practice also benefits you mentally and physically.
By getting outside and getting active while the weather permits, you are encouraging healthy body movement and also reducing stress in the process. It’s not often we get to see the fruits of our labor happen so fast, but with gardening the reward is almost instant. You don’t have to have a natural green thumb to be a good gardener, it is something that can happen with practice and patience, and the expert team at the English Gardener is here to help Buffalonians everywhere. Joseph Han, the company’s founder, has been creating gardens since childhood with his family and enjoys sharing unique (some might say, crazy) designs with people all across the Queen City. With gardening being such an influential part of Joseph’s life, he cherishes being able to share this amazing gift with others,
“ One of our goals is to help our clients be gardeners, and we like to encourage people to think about their garden as a plant community. So, there are relationships between plants, but also there are also relationships with the caretaker or the gardener. So mentally I think it’s really the ability to care for something and then be rewarded with the joy of gardening.”
With the happenings of everyday life busying up schedules most days, it is imperative for our mental and physical wellbeing to slow down and connect with the natural world that surrounds us.
“Physically, we have to get our exercise and moving around and certainly gardening is a physical activity, but being outside with some fresh air and in the elements- it’s very important these days. I think people are rediscovering the joy of gardening and the peace it provides as well. We have all these distractions in life and we’re on our phone, but being in the garden- when you talk to gardeners, they’ll talk about how much joy it really brings them.”
On top of gardening creating a healthy environment for us individually, it can also help to maintain healthy larger environments around us. As humans, we have a massive responsibility to maintain and steward the earth well, and while years of neglect can not be undone overnight, everyday we have the opportunity to create change (both big and small). Gardening may not be the first thing thought of when discussing solutions to our planet’s fate, but according to Joseph’s expertise, it should be!
“We look at gardening more as stewardship and that stewardship is of the outdoors, the environment, the ecology, there are so many dimensions to gardening.These days there has been a greater focus on the ecology of gardening. With climate change, global warming, less diversity in the environment and species and wildlife, there’s a greater interest in how it does make a difference if you grow plants, which are part of the food web that the insects, the birds, the bees and the butterflies all come to. That ultimately supports a better environment.”
Gardening does so much more than just create beautiful lawns and settings (although, that is exciting too), it ultimately serves us in bigger ways than we could imagine. You don’t have to be a green thumb expert to reap the benefits of gardening, because in this case it really is the thought and simple action that counts.
This series is sponsored by Project Best Life. Buffalo Rising and Project Best Life have teamed up to produce a series on wellness inspiration and advice to direct readers to the people, places, and experiences in Buffalo and beyond that will help them fulfill their health, nutrition, and wellness goals. For more information on how you can live your best life, subscribe to the Project Best Life newsletter.
In tough times, our efforts to maintain fitness, healthy nutrition, and personal wellness can fall by the wayside as we direct all our energy into navigating our individual storm. Yet, in the face of what’s happening in the world around us, it is essential to make space for self-care and experiences that fortify our physical and mental wellbeing.
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