Planting a Garden Can Be Healing

Do you have a tree in your yard that you really like? If you do, it might be fun to plant a few flowers near it to make your own little garden.

Gardens, even small ones with just a few flowers near a tree, can help people feel calmer and more relaxed. Notice how you feel when you see flowers growing in someone’s yard or in a city park. They probably make you stop and think how pretty they are. As you notice them, you might forget to think about whatever might be bothering you.

Gardens, no matter how small, can be healing for us. Wouldn’t it be fun to have a small garden in your own yard that would help you and your family and friends feel a little happier?

There are so many different ways to plant a flower garden. You can plant just a few flowers, maybe only three or four of them. They could be different kinds of flowers, or they could be all the same kind. Find a tree that you would like to plant the flowers close to. The tree will help to give the flowers a little shade and protection from the weather. Having flowers near a tree can add to the beauty of both the flowers and the tree.

Ask your family and friends what flowers grow well in your area. Plant some of those kinds of flowers. Where I live, dianthus, marigolds and petunias grow especially well. They might not grow as well where you live. As you talk with people, you will learn what grows best in your area.

Once you and your family choose a good spot for the flowers, use a spade to dig up a small area for the plants. Don’t make it too big. You want this project to be fun. You don’t want it to be so much work that you no longer enjoy it. Once you have loosened the soil in that space, buy a bag of garden soil or potting mix from the store. Use your spade to mix some of that in with the dirt in your garden plot.

Now you can decide if you want to buy a few flowers from the store that have already been potted and are starting to grow. Or you can buy a package or two of seeds if you would like to plant the flowers from scratch. Either way will work. If you choose seeds, you just have to wait a few weeks for them to sprout.

Whether you buy already started flowers or just the seeds, take them to your garden plot. If you are planting flowers that are already starting to grow, dig a hole big enough to cover the soil that is surrounding the potted plant. Pour a little bit of water into the hole. Carefully remove the plant from the container that the store grew it in. Place the flower in the ground so that the plant is sticking up above the ground. Then add some water around the flower to give it a little drink.

If you are planting flowers from seeds, dig a trench in your garden plot that is the right depth for the plant. You can dig a second trench if you want more than one row of flowers to grow. Read the seed package to see how deep to dig the trench. Often it will not be more than a couple of
inches. Pour a little bit of water into the trench, just enough to moisten the soil.

Take one or two seeds out of the package and drop them into one spot in your trench. Then a few inches away drop a few more seeds into the trench until you have filled the trench with seeds. There might be seeds left in the package. If there are, carefully fold the package so the remaining seeds won’t fall out, and save them for later. You can keep them for another flower garden project or give them to a friend. Cover the seeds up with soil. Then gently pour a little water onto the soil to give the seeds some moisture.

Every day come out to check your garden. If the soil looks dry, gently add water, just enough to give the plants and seeds a little drink. If you want to, you can also pour a little water at the base of the tree to give it a drink as well.

If you plant flowers from seeds, don’t give up if it takes a while for the flowers to start sprouting. It could take a few weeks. Check on them every day, and enjoy being around this small plot of ground that you have prepared for flowers.

If you planted the flowers from sprouts that were already starting to grow at the store, don’t get worried if the plants start to look a bit droopy for a few days. It can take some time for the flowers to get used to being in a different place. Within a week they should start to perk up and look better.

Enjoy how pretty your flowers start to look as the weeks go by. You may discover that you feel happier and calmer when you are around those beautiful flowers and the nearby tree.

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