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Robert Hall explains how getting out into the garden can help us to exercise, get out into the open air, enjoy time with nature and to help keep our minds occupied during these overwhelming Covid-19 times.
The UK has always been known as a lover of gardening and an English country garden has always been one of the quintessential traits of how we are perceived in the UK from afar. An Englishman’s home might be his castle but his garden is his playground.
During the current Corona outbreak, many of us may be self-isolating and with government guidelines suggesting for this to happen for up to four months at a time, that's a lot of time to be stuck at home! There's one really simple way to help overcome this though and that's getting out into the garden! Well, it’s certainly my answer and I hope you agree.
Of course, we do not all choose to have a garden, for some it is not economically viable and for others, who may not be fully able-bodied, gardening may not be such an easy option. But there are still many of us who are lucky enough to have access to a garden and who could do a lot worse than turn their attention to their backyards under the current fast-shifting changes that we are all experiencing.
If you don’t have a garden then maybe you can grow plants on a windowsill or balcony, or simply introduce some houseplants to your room or apartment?
We need to avoid crowds, in fact, many shops may close down in the coming weeks if the government dictates, and we have no sporting events to watch on TV (which will please some people), so we have to find a way to occupy and engage ourselves whilst limiting our exposure to risks. Gardening is a near-perfect solution.
It allows us to exercise, to get out into the open air, to improve our little area of heaven on earth and enjoy the environment. And what better environment than being in your garden in a British spring?
And it doesn’t have to cost the Earth. Most of us have gardening tools so you can weed for free, and it’s also surprisingly therapeutic. We have a blog entitled What To Do In The Garden in March and we will be following that up with an April edition soon.
If you have a greenhouse the possibilities open up even further as now is the time to start planting seeds for salad and vegetable crops that you can harvest yourself in the coming months. And you can help feed others or swap homegrown foods (sensibly) with neighbours. It’s a win-win situation considering the pressures we are all going to be put under.
And once you have spent a few hours in the garden you can enjoy a well-earned cup of tea in your favourite outdoor seat, or even a glass of wine once those warmer evenings start to come through.
This may not be everyone’s idea of heaven, but it beats staring at the four walls or a screen all day in my world.
I hope you are tempted to join me?
Spring flowering bulbs brighten the garden from when snow is on the ground right through to the sunlit early summer. Here is David Hall's guide to achieving a marvellous display of colour to herald in the new year.
It's autumn and David Coton is getting the garden prepared for the onset of colder weather but, at the same time, the arrival of spring bulbs in the garden centre is a reminder that we should also now be planning ahead for next year.
There's no doubt that television provides gardeners with inspiration, sound advice and good ideas, that's why we're all looking forward to new programmes and the return of old favourites during 2020 but during the current government restrictions don't be surprised to see repeats filling gaps in a depleted schedule and other programmes adopting a different format..
It was all change this year for GLEE, the garden retail industry's annual show that is usually held at the NEC in Birmingham. Due to pandemic restrictions, a virtual show took its place with product launches, presentations and awards all happening online.