Ultradecking manager discusses how a garden makeover can improve mental health

Every home should have a garden because it positively impacts our physical and mental health.

By immersing yourself in nature and focusing on a healthy lifestyle, you will reap benefits like stress alleviation and improved mood.

Several scientific studies have reported that growing a home garden promotes creativity, mental stimulation and mindfulness.  

The good thing about gardening makeovers is that they don’t have to be cost-intensive.

For instance, keeping an indoor plant near your workstation or desk can invigorate you while improving your ability to concentrate and relax.

This is why gardening has proven to be highly therapeutic for people suffering from emotional or work-based stress.  

Lee Smith, marketing manager at Ultra Decking, UK’s leading composite deck supplier, said: “Garden, yard and other outdoor spaces should be an extension of every home.

“Garden makeover is an exciting way for homeowners to enjoy a psychological and mental massage.

“Even though remodels and updates are sometimes physically demanding, they are key to creating a sanctuary where anyone can find peace, solitude and mental stimulation.” 

In our conversation with Smith, he explained some benefits of gardening makeovers to mental health.

Stimulate senses 

On how garden makeovers stimulate the senses, Smith said: “The best thing about a garden is that it connects with the whole family and stimulates the senses.  

“Most homeowners design their garden to serve two purposes: first, an area where the children and teenagers can relax, wander around and play.

“Second, a space where older adults can enjoy the tranquillity and serenity that nature has to offer.  

“This can be achieved through many ways. For instance, you can add a water feature to enhance your garden – decorative elements like trickling fountains or small ponds will work.   

“Also, ensure you add colourful pebbles to walkways that lead to a lovely flower plant.

“Or better still, a bench nestled off in a secluded corner for introspection.” 

Connect with nature 

“Gardening makeovers do not only promote mental well-being; it is one of the best ways of connecting with nature,” Smith said.

“Studies have proven that the fragrance or appearance of plants can benefit psychological and emotional health, and sound from nature can induce relaxation – our gardens evoke the sense of being close to nature. 

“Over the years, many Ultradecking customers have reported that simple additions to their composite decks, such as flowering plants, have created a sense of calm and anxiety alleviation.

“It’s even better when homeowners plant medicinal or fragrant plants because they delight the senses.  

“Two years ago, during the lockdown, social distancing rules inhibited interactions and communication between many families, neighbours, friends and communities with many public parks and green areas sealed off.

“People began to realise the importance of gardens in their homes.

“Knowing that garden makeovers are cheap and don’t require any hassle, many homeowners began to create garden spaces on their decks, yards and backyards, especially in low-income communities.” 

Increased happiness 

“Another fantastic benefit from a garden makeover is increased happiness,” Smith said.

“It can improve your morale and self-esteem, alleviate anger and promote better emotional well-being, contributing significantly to a positive behaviour and mood.  

“People who frequently garden are more in tune with their community. Culturally, plants signify life and can impact everyone around them.” 

Prevent depression 

“Nature and flora are major elements in horticulture treatment for depression, meaning gardening can help adults feel less depressed,” Smith explained.

“When gardening, people are exposed to sources of serotonin such as sunlight and vitamin D.

“Serotonin is the neurotransmitter in our brains that causes us to feel happy. 

“Studies have also shown that having plants around your property and outdoor spaces improve your cognitive abilities and memory.” 

Promote bonding and family time 

“Gardening is a passion project that every child can learn at a very young age, and since spending time outdoors has a positive effect on the intellect, it can benefit them and help their mood too.  

“Gardening also facilitates togetherness, bonding and family time which can only be a good thing.” 

Lower risk of chronic illnesses 

“Completing a makeover of your garden is a physically demanding task that can improve your fitness level,” Smith said.

“Working in the garden burns lots of calories, which is advantageous to general health. 

“Enjoying a diet of organic, healthy veggies, coupled with regular physical activity can lower the risk of cardiovascular disease and obesity.  

“These illnesses are also tied to psychological disorders like chronic stress and insomnia.”  

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