Growing for Health

How plants and gardening help us live a longer, healthier, happier, more sustainable life

Concerns about our health and the environment are at an all-time high and for good reasons. Chronic health conditions such as diabetes, heart disease and auto-immune conditions that were once hardly heard of are now commonplace, the planet is in crisis and many species of insects and animals are disappearing at an alarming rate.

Our way of life is so far removed from that of our ancestors it is little wonder that our health is out of kilter.

Much of our time is spent indoors, often in front of screens. The food we eat is processed at worst and depleted in nutrients at best, due to farming and harvesting techniques, travelling long distances and spending time in storage.

We move a lot less than we would have done as hunter/gatherers and we often live relatively isolated lives, especially those who are old, disabled or working from home.

Add in money pressures and the stresses of everyday life, which can rob us of proper sleep, and it’s a recipe for disaster in terms of our health and happiness.

It is easy to feel overwhelmed; the scale of it is almost too much to take in. We’re told of the challenges but feel helpless in the face of them. After we’ve cut down on plastic use, done our re-cycling and up-cycling, cut down on and travel and reduced meat consumption, what else can we do? 

Where plants and soil fit in

Everything starts with the soil. It is so much more than just dirt, yet we so often ignore its importance. It is where plants get their nutrients and where we, in turn, get our nutrients, Yet modern farming practices have gradually depleted the world’s soil over the years, until not only are they horribly deficient and eroded, it is estimated we have only 60 harvests left. 

Soil should be teeming with life as well as nutrients. A teaspoon of healthy soil is said to contain more microorganisms than there are people on the planet. These microbes also support plant health and vigour and if we are gardening in healthy soil they can support our own microbiome. A highly fertile soil is also an efficient carbon sink. We should be nurturing our soils for our own health and the planet, as well as to have plants that flourish.

Plants are essential to life on earth. They support us, they support wildlife, they give out oxygen and absorb carbon dioxide. They provide food and pleasure and are the lungs of the earth.  

What you can do

If you have some outside space, whatever the size, you can use it in a targeted way to grow some of your own, highly nutritious produce by growing it organically and in highly fertile and nutritious soil.

By planning what you grow, you can be picking some of your own produce right the way throughout the year, regardless of whether you are experienced or a complete beginner. You can also use some of your outside space to create a haven for wildlife, which they desperately need. 

This does all need thought and planning which is where the Growing for Health e-book and talks come in. Regardless of expertise, space or time available, the 60 page, fully referenced e-book will guide you through what you can do in a easy to follow manner, even if you haven’t got a garden at all!