Gardeners can improve health by learning from plants

Gardeners could learn more about themselves if they stopped to consider the thought processes behind their horticultural techniques, it has been claimed.

According to Jennifer Smith, a horticulturist from Kansas State University Research and Extension, a number of responses to gardening issues could be adapted to offer similar support for humans.

In the same way that gardeners should automatically check to see if adequate nutrition is being supplied to plants which look droopy or off-color, for instance, people feeling under-the-weather should ensure they are consuming the right balance of vitamins and minerals in their diet.

Meanwhile, as tomato plants in greenhouses are more likely to fend off a spider mite attack if they are healthy, the immune response of humans can be improved through regular exercise.

"We learn lessons in life from all kinds of things," Ms Smith commented.

"If we gardeners would pause now and then to think about it, though, we might realize plants can teach us, too. Wed just have to pay attention … or remember."

Kansas State University Research and Extension aims to propagate a sustainable food system in order to boost the health of local communities.