These days there is a buzz about mindfulness. As a gardener I got to thinking about mindful gardening and how to do it. so here goes.
What is mindful gardening? Before I can answer this question let’s break the words up Mindful from the word Mindfulness so What’s Mindfulness?
According to wikipedia
“Mindfulness is the psychological process of bringing one’s attention to the internal and external experiences occurring in the present moment, which can be developed through the practice of meditation and other training.”
According to dictionary.com
“the act of cultivating or tending a garden.”
So Mindfulness is being aware of what’s going on at this precise moment, now. How you are feeling, what you can see, smell, feel, hear etc…Both internally and externally. And gardening is tending to a garden.
Applying Mindfulness to Gardening
So as you garden, be aware of the temperature. Is it hot? Is it cold? What’s the light like? Is it sunny/windy? Can you smell anything? Maybe the fragrance of a particular flower or the soil or even manure!
How about sounds, can you hear the wind through the trees? Are there any insects buzzing? Are the birds singing? What about touch, feel the soil is it wet, dry, crumbly, soggy?
The 1st thing I do when I get to my allotment is walk around the plot. I look at the different sections. Noticing what’s changed, what needs to be harvested or thinned out.
What needs watering, What’s being attacked by insects and what can I do about it.I never considered that this was a mindful act, I’m just being observant. Now I can see this is the art of mindful gardening.
People will tell you that somebody is “green fingered” as everything he plants grows. It’s not green fingered it’s good gardening practise. It’s being observant. Watching nature and working with it, being mindful.
So Mindful gardening is good for your well being and good for your plants too. My advice call it what you like but be more observant and your plants will benefit and so will you.
And personally I have benefitted from practising mindfulness in my daily life. So it makes sense to extend this into the garden.