Gardening is good for your health!

By jess

A study conducted by two researchers in the Netherlands found that gardening reduces stress! Best get gardening.

Here's the abstract and a link to the full study:

Stress-relieving effects of gardening were hypothesized and tested in a field experiment. Thirty allotment gardeners performed a stressful Stroop task and were then randomly assigned to 30 minutes of outdoor gardening or indoor reading on their own allotment plot. Salivary cortisol levels and self-reported mood were repeatedly measured. Gardening and reading each led to decreases in cortisol during the recovery period, but decreases were significantly stronger in the gardening group. Positive mood was fully restored after gardening, but further deteriorated during reading. These findings provide the first experimental evidence that gardening can promote relief from acute stress.

Agnes E. Van Den Berg and Mariëtte H.G. Custers.

Gardening Promotes Neuroendocrine and Affective Restoration from Stress

Journal of Health Psychology: January 2011 vol. 16 no. 1 3-11