happy-gardenerA survey of 1500 adults in the UK has found that those who garden have a higher probability of being ‘satisfied’ with their life than those who don’t.

The survey for Gardeners’ World magazine found that 80% of gardeners feel satisfied with their lives, compared to 67% for non gardeners – and nearly all gardeners (some 93%) think that gardening improves their mood. Other hobbies that seem to make you happy are walking, fishing and, believe it or not, computing! All of these activities account for over 70% life satisfaction, whereas only 55% of those without any hobbies are ‘satisfied’ with their lives.

The most popular hobby in the UK is computing or gaming, (52% of respondents name it as their favourite pastime), while gardening came joint second with walking or hiking (43%), according to the study.

 Lucy Hall, editor of Gardeners’ World  said:

“We have long suspected it, but our research means we can definitely say gardening makes you happy. Part of it comes from nurturing something but also a natural optimism that no matter how bad the weather, there’s always next year. It’s also about passing the seed of knowledge and the pleasure that gives.”

Cawston primary School- weeding the cabbages and calabrese

Cawston primary School- weeding the Cabbages and Calabrese

Further support for the benefits of gardening comes from research across several UK universities. Jules Pretty, from Essex University, said:

“Engagement with green places is good for personal health. We also know that short-term mental health improvements are protective of long-term health benefits. We thus conclude that there would be a large potential benefit to individuals, society and to the costs of the health service if all groups of people were to self-medicate more with what we at Essex call green exercise. Gardening falls into this category – it is good for both mental and physical health, and all social and age groups benefit. It provides a dose of nature.”

Source: The Times, Belfast

Link: BBC News report

Old School Gardener