Mental Health News
Researchers at the University of Florida provided interesting insights into how gardening affects mental health. The study is published in the journal PLOS ONE.
To understand the mental health benefits of gardening, the researchers surveyed 32 healthy female participants between the ages of 26 to 49 years. Half of the participants were assigned to gardening sessions and the other half to art-making sessions. The study ran for 4 weeks.
In the gardening sessions, the participants learned to sow seeds, transplant different kinds of plants, and harvest and taste edible plants. In the art-making sessions, papermaking, printmaking, drawing, and collage were taught to the participants.
After the sessions, the participants were asked to complete a series of assessments measuring stress, mood, anxiety, and depression. The surveys from both groups were compared.
The results revealed that both the gardening and art-making groups experienced improved mental health over time. However, it was found that the gardening group experienced less anxiety than the art-making group.
The study reinforced the already proven benefits of “therapeutic horticulture” or the practice of using gardening to promote better health and wellbeing.
One of the lead researchers, Charles Guy: “We believe this research shows promise for mental wellbeing, plants in healthcare and in public health. It would be great to see other researchers use our work as a basis for those kinds of studies.”
To Know More You May Refer To
Odeh, R., Diehl, E., Nixon, S. J., Tisher, C. C., Klempner, D., Sonke, J. K., Colquhoun, T. A., Li, Q., Espinosa, M., Perdomo, D., Rosario, K., Terzi, H., & Guy, C. L. (2022). A pilot randomized controlled trial of group-based indoor gardening and art activities demonstrates therapeutic benefits to healthy women. PloS one, 17(7), e0269248. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0269248