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Gardening For Everyone

Author : Mark Bartley

Gardening is a pastime that can be undertaken by school children, their parents, enthusiastic vegetable growers, those who enjoy competition or those who just like to get outside and makes their gardens nice places to be. No two gardens are alike as everyone has their own preferences, style and requirements. For households with small children an area for play will almost always be needed while they are growing up. Other practical considerations become part of the equation if access routes are required to cater for those who need safe walkways or for the placement of vegetable growing areas if the garden is to help with the food bill.

One beauty of gardening is that it doesn't make too many demands in terms of tools and technology Of course there are endless gadgets and automated versions of tools available for purchase, but often these are not required and a gardener has the option of using tried and tested tools like rakes, spades, push mowers and pruning shears if they wish. The only real requirement is a patch of land on which to garden (unless a window box or balcony will do you) and most homes have a garden of some sort. Even homes in apartment blocks sometimes have access to rooftop gardens or perhaps the space to create a small garden on a balcony or, as mentioned already, even in window boxes. For those with no garden options or those who just want a larger space, an allotment can be sought out. In some areas these are quite hard to secure, with long waiting lists in place, but they are almost always very affordable. There can be very few hobbies that offer such opportunity and at an affordable range of costs.

If a love of gardening is developed at a young age, then it can often become a hobby for life. We still use the term "Kindergarten" today, but its origin goes back over a century. It literally means "children's garden" and was used at the time to describe a new trend of pre-school learning establishments that started in Hungary, evolved into something more popular in Germany and ended up becoming an institution in the USA. The idea was to provide an environment where children could develop by playing and experiencing a wide range of situations, which often meant being outside. In fact the benefits of gardens in assisting children's education are still being understood and a recent study by the Royal Horticultural Society discovered children could be happier through gardening. The study also discovered all manner of additional positive effects such as increased resilience, increased confidence plus gardening also encouraged the children to lead healthier lives.

Introducing children to gardening can take many forms from growing a sunflower in a pot or scattering some flower seeds, through to laying out a veg patch with potatoes and carrots or planting up a small border with cottage garden flowers.

When you consider why people take up gardening all kinds of reasons spring to mind. Some want to recreate classic garden designs, some just want a great-looking lawn, while others like to experiment with unusual plants. Gardening is also a great way to make new friends, with local interest groups found in most towns and cities in the UK, plus a huge bank of knowledge and help accessible via the internet.

The English have always had a love of gardening and it shows no sign of waning. Newspapers dedicate regular weekly columns or even whole supplements to gardeners, evidence of a hobby whose popularity is thriving. For getting outside, spending time with friends and giving your body a spell of useful exercise, gardening really is hard to beat.

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Mark has written about gardening for many years and is a big gardening fan himself.

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Tags:   gardening, gardens, design

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Submitted : 2011-01-10    Word Count : 694    Times Viewed: 450