Friday Fix: How Growing a Garden Could Reduce Your Depression

person gardening

Verywell / Julie Bang

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The Verywell Mind Podcast's “Friday Fix” is a short episode that features a quick, actionable tip or exercise to help you manage a specific mental health issue or concern.

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Friday Fix: Episode 198

There are many ways to treat depression—medication, individual therapy, group therapy, and transcranial magnetic stimulation to name a few.

But, there are also lifestyle changes that can sometimes provide effective relief from symptoms. Something as simple as growing a garden can sometimes be an effective way to improve mood and reduce stress.

In fact, horticulture therapy has become an entire field of treatment for individuals who want to improve their well-being.

From working in community gardens to growing plants at home, being in nature, getting physical activity, and working toward a goal is good for mental health.

You might not necessarily need to grow an outdoor garden to benefit, however. Growing a container garden on a patio or even just growing an indoor plant might also be effective.

Before you decide that you just don’t have a “green thumb” or that you aren’t familiar with plants, trust that learning about plants is part of the process. You can discover easy-to-care-for plants that suit your lifestyle. 

If you really don’t want to grow the plants yourself, know that just having plants around can also be good for your emotional well-being. You don’t necessarily have to be the caretaker.

In this episode of The Verywell Mind Podcast, I explain why gardening is good for mental health and the steps you can take to incorporate plants in a plan that supports your overall well-being.

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Editor’s Note: Please be mindful that this transcript does not go through our standard editorial process and may contain inaccuracies and grammatical errors. Thank you.

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By Amy Morin, LCSW
Amy Morin, LCSW, is a psychotherapist and international bestselling author. Her books, including "13 Things Mentally Strong People Don't Do," have been translated into more than 40 languages. Her TEDx talk,  "The Secret of Becoming Mentally Strong," is one of the most viewed talks of all time.