Have you ever noticed how gardens are almost magical places? They are so quiet and tranquil, yet house a bustle of productivity. At the risk of sounding like a total hippie, I believe in the healing power of nature. I know, I know. Totally cliché, right? But in fact, a Time Magazine article describes a growing therapeutic trend called “eco-therapy.”
Community gardens have been gaining in popularity specifically to combat the growing urbanization of modern day living. Depression, anxiety, and emotional stress are all thought to be more debilitating due to our overwhelming disconnect from nature.
Additionally, as our diets continue to include more and more processed foods, we no longer get enough vitamins and minerals from naturally occurring sources. Supplements can be expensive, especially compared to the cost of a packet of seeds or a tray of starter plants. The Colorado State Extension explains that consuming a wide variety of fresh produce can provide the necessary vitamins and minerals needed as part of a healthy lifestyle. Many people are discovering the emotional and physical benefits of growing food instead of lawns.
Through a partnership with Unity Gardens, we have hosted a community garden plot since 2009 to provide healthy and sustainable dietary options for the community. However, fresh food is only one of the benefits of these gardens. According to the National Gardening Association, they are often a catalyst for neighborhood improvement. Increasing the healthfulness and beauty of any neighborhood helps inspire pride and ownership for residents. Even the most broken neighborhoods can benefit from a plot of land that encourages cooperation, communication, and involvement.
If fresh herbs and veggies appeal to you, stop by our gardens to experience the power of nature for yourself!