To garden is physical work, but it is through this physical process that we can reconnect with the nature, the soil, and the rhythms of the seasons. It is an act that provides spiritual and emotional nourishment. Gifford believes that there is a “democratisation of gardening sweeping the world” as we find ourselves in a society where every aspect has increased connectivity online, yet can be so very physically and emotionally isolated.
In the absence of other cultural institutions that have bound us together historically, such as the church or civic duty, people are increasingly looking at ways to reconnect to themselves and nature. As Gifford says, “the simplest way is pushing a seed into a pot of soil and watching it grow. Being pulled away from the cadences of the natural world is not inevitable and can and should be reversed. There is much to be positive about”.
So fight the battle against feeling dislocated, isolated, bored, confused, lonely, tired or angry with dirty hands, dirty knees, lungfuls of air, sun on your back, rosy cheeks and a vase of sweet peas for summer.