Home' Scoop Homes and Art : Scoop Homes and Art 36 Contents 190 HOMES & ART AUTUMN 2013
Ihave friends who can find hours in
don’t have time to maintain a garden.
I find that odd, especially since the aerobic
benefit of a bit of cultivating, soil tilling,
trimming and mowing is tremendous.
In addition to the physical aspect, there
is also considerable evidence supporting
the wider health and psychological benefits
of both gardening and the amount of green
space in our living environment – the
‘Vitamin G’ effect, as Dutch researcher
Dr Jolanda Maas calls it.
A study conducted by Dr Maas of
more than 350,000 patient records in
the Netherlands revealed that living
environments that include more green
space resulted in fewer complaints
of depression, diabetes, heart disease,
a nd emphysema/bronchitis du ri ng doctor
visits. Dr Mass also noted that patients
reported feeling less lonely and had lower
I encourage you to try it yourself. Next
time you feel your blood pressure rising
after a stressful day at work, head outdoors,
take your shoes off, stand barefoot on the
grass and water the garden by hand,
then see how you feel after 10 minutes.
Garden expert Trevor Cochrane
says you don’t need to be an avid
green thumb to reap the benefits
of growing your own produce.
Find out more at Garden Week, taking
place from April 18-22 at Perry Lakes
Reserve, Floreat. There are over 100
exhibits of the latest gardening products,
plant releases, outdoor trends and water-
wise solutions. There will be thousands
of plants for sale, plus live appearances
by celebrity chefs and top gardening
experts. Kids can enjoy the wildlife farm,
cubbies, frogs, worms, pot planting,
a sensory garden and more.
Visit gardenweek.com.au for details.
Simple steps to a
flourishing edible garden
1. Add a soil improver or manure
in copious quantities.
2. Set up a good irrigation system
that can water your garden in line
with water restrictions.
3. Visit your local garden centre or
Garden Week to acquire seedlings
or starter pots. Take advantage of the
free advice and support if you need it.
Tip Test your skills first by growing herbs.
Start with a few of the hardier varieties
(parsley, rosemary and mint) to grow your
confidence, and move on from there.
From an environmental perspective,
having a lush garden at home may help
reduce some of the damage that urban
and suburban development has caused.
A century ago, the vegetation surrounding
our cities played a vital role in cleansing
the atmosphere, cooling the environment,
promoting rainfall and providing a habitat
for animals. Collectively, building gardens
at home could make inroads to slowing the
momentum of climate change.
With the Western world in the grip of
an epidemic of food-related health issues,
the humble vegie patch has had a massive
resurgence in popularity. Never before
have people been so conscious of what
goes into producing their food. And this
growing obsession for quality, chemical-
free produce has been driving people
to grow their own fruits and vegetables
in record numbers. Australia is only just
catching up with the UK and the USA,
where it’s become one of the hottest trends.
Today’s edible gardens are much more
sophisticated than the traditional 5x5sqm
plots. Living edible walls, planter poles and
hanging gardens are becoming the trend,
by virtue of shrinking block sizes and the
growing popularity of apartment living.
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