On the whole, gardeners seem to be a pretty jolly bunch. It’s no secret that gardening is good for you. Perhaps it’s because we often work in beautiful surroundings (the gardens at Chuckling Goat HQ are no exception) and have plenty of fresh air and exercise, and vitamin D from working outdoors.
Gardening may also help to keep our gut healthy, which in turn keeps our minds and bodies healthy! This is especially true if you are fortunate enough to able to grow some of your own food, even on a small scale. You can’t beat access to fresh, nutritious fruit and vegetables to feed your good gut bacteria.
Everything at HQ gardens is grown without the use of chemicals or anything artificial – we use manure from the goats to fertilise the beds, sheep wool to mulch the fruit trees, make our own compost and use companion planting techniques to aid pest control. All this keeps the soil healthy and full of nutrients, which results in nutritious food, and keeps the flora and fauna happy.
Recent research1https://experts.illinois.edu/en/publications/fecal-and-soil-microbiota-composition-of-gardening-and-non-garden confirmed that due to regular exposure to healthy microbes in the soil, gardeners have more diverse gut microbiomes and healthy immune systems. All the more reason to keep the soil chemical free and in good shape, and get our hands dirty from time to time!
Another reason gardeners may well be content, and why it is perhaps such a popular hobby, is the enjoyment and sense of well-being that being surrounded by amazing nature and plant life gives us. As gardeners, we are part of the continuous cycle of growth and renewal, always looking to the future.
As autumn is upon us in the gardens here at CG HQ, we are happily harvesting the fruits of our summer labour, and preparing the soil for winter crops and spring blooms. There is still so much colour left in the garden as the late summer flowering plants put on their final shows, whilst we plan optimistically for the next growing year!