Some of us enjoy being alone more than others. But if Covid has meant spending more time in your own company than you’d like, research by the RHS shows that getting into the garden could help relieve pangs of loneliness. In fact 39% of people surveyed said they turn to the garden or grow plants when they feel lonely.
Yes, it’s enjoyable to have company, but being alone in a garden, surrounded by beautiful growing things is calming. Like meditating, gardening soothes the mind and helps you focus on the present rather than letting worries take over. Unlike being in a dark, silent room, you’re surrounded by lively and sensual nature, the touch of the soil, sound of the wind in the trees, birds and bees and the uplifting scent of plants. Plus, vigorous digging and raking will keep help release relaxing endorphins to dispel negative emotions.
A garden is a forgiving environment, an escape from worldly pressures and stressful social settings, where you don’t feel judged. For some people, plants can even provide company of sorts, they become familiar, with their own needs and characters. Tending and nurturing them can be totally absorbing, distracting you from any troubles.
Designing a garden is also satisfying and creatively fulfilling– and whilst it’s nice to share the process with someone else, at least going alone means you’re the boss. You can see through your vision, watching your ideas evolve, which is liberating. And you’ll have something lovely to proudly show off when you do have company.