The simple act of planting, tending, and growing flowers can have minor and major benefits to any family that has the means to engage in gardening. With just a bit of soil, seeds, and perseverance you can obtain the educational, social, environmental, and health benefits of flower gardening for the whole family.
Educational Benefits of Flower Gardening
Whether your flower gardening routine is a solo or group activity, you can derive educational benefits from gardening.
Solo: Gardening as a solo activity requires a lot of research and a bit of flying blind. The internet—one of the main sources of secondary knowledge—can only teach so much. Despite that deficiency people who are solo gardeners can engage in real life problem solving throughout the gardening process.
Group: When gardening with kids, knowledge can be shared and lessons can be passed from one generation to another. Old hats at gardening can gain new insights by observing the young and inexperienced at work. Newcomers can provide open minds that are capable of learning knowledge from multiple teachers (internet, older gardeners, and his or her own experiences).
Environmental Benefits of Growing a Flower Garden
Planting flowers will not halt the rate at which our environment is deteriorating, but it will slow the process a tad. Today carbon dioxide levels are at an all-time high. Despite that people are bound to their gasoline vehicles by necessity. By planting flowers, people can lower their carbon foot print by supplying the environment with more plants that can consume the carbon dioxide. Through photosynthesis the oxygen supply is then replenished a bit.
Health Benefits of Growing Flowers
Gardening flowers provides numerous health benefits by providing opportunities to strengthen the body.
Due to the sedentary nature of many jobs and hobbies, the amount of physical activity that people get weekly is way below the amount recommended by the Center for Disease Control. Adults should exercise at least 2 hours and 30 minute a week. Children should have at least 1 hour a day of physical activity. Planting, weeding and watering plants all require some degree of daily physical activity. Keeping to a weekly workout regime prolongs life by fighting disease and strengthening muscles and bones. Gardening will allow people to achieve most of their weekly physical activity quota.
Another side effect of today’s sedentary lifestyle is the unnaturally pale skin and a disturbingly low amount of Vitamin D in the body. Vitamin D enters the body when ultraviolet radiation touches the skin. The vitamin D is necessary for children and adults to absorb calcium. Without Vitamin D all that milk that you force yourself and your kids to drink is useless. Without the Vitamin D that is produced when you engage in outside activities like gardening, your family will have weak bones and teeth and disturbingly high dentist and doctor’s bills.
Social Benefits of Flower Gardening
When gardening is engaged in as a group activity with other family members or friends, gardeners will see an improvement in the social aspect of their lives. In an age where family activities include sitting mindlessly in front of the television or video game screen, gardening is a fun and educational group activity. As the season passes and the plants begin to bloom you might also notice a strengthening of family ties. This is in part due to the fact that during gardening you are not disengaging with each other, but working together to achieve a common goal.
Gardening can be a fun and satisfying social activity. It can be used to stretch the mind and help form emotional connections with family and friends. As the plants grow, the body is strengthened. By the time the flowers are in bloom you might find yourself wondering “why didn’t I do this earlier?”
Guest post by Mary Potter whose earliest memories involve playing in the soil while her grandmother meticulously tended her flower and vegetable gardens. Twenty-odd years later she tends her own garden and writes about gardening and flowers on behalf of http://www.theflowerexchange.com.