Museology Master of Arts Program

December 8, 2021

Plant love

The use of Horticulture Therapy as an everyday source of wellness
By Linda Lee

Whether it be access or transportation issues, a general aversion to chilly and wet weather, or an utter lack of time, you might find nature visits unattainable this winter season. In addition to the shorter days, darker skies and extensive indoor time, these factors can all contribute to a pretty sour mood.  

Horticulture therapy is the practice of using gardening, the interaction and environment, as a method of improving mental and physical health (AHTA, 2021; Chillag, 2018). I think it is safe to assume that not all the students of this program have a backyard or even access to a communal garden, in which case, caring for a house plant or two (or seven.. hundred) could help create a natural and zen environment in your home this winter. 

Not only are plants awfully pretty (fact), but the bacterium found in soil can act as a serotonin stimulant, acting as a natural antidepressant (Grant, 2021). Now I know what you’re thinking. Based on this, it is very tempting to roll around in a pile of soil this winter, but perhaps buying a few plants in lieu of donning a potent manure smell will be better for your dating game.

Let’s make sure to prioritize mental and physical health this winter season! 

Here are just a few local nurseries and small businesses that sell plants in the area:

Resources:

American Horticultural Therapy Association (2021). Horticulture therapy. [accessed 5 December 2021]. https://www.ahta.org/horticultural-therapy 

Chillag, A. (2018). Gardening becomes healing with horticultural therapy. [accessed 5 December 2021]. https://www.cnn.com/2018/08/03/health/sw-horticultural-therapy/index.html 

Grant, B.L. (2021). Antidepressant microbes in soil: How dirt makes you happy. [accessed 5 December 2021]. https://www.gardeningknowhow.com/garden-how-to/soil-fertilizers/antidepressant-microbes-soil.htm