Gardens and Health Week 2021: Gardens are good for you…

Wilts-Pythouse Kitchen Garden


The National Garden Scheme is marking its annual Gardens and Health Week in May with the launch of comprehensive proof that gardens are good for you. The charity’s interactive, digital booklet entitled The Little Yellow Book of Gardens and Health is packed with stories and case studies from garden owners, garden visitors and beneficiaries who have found solace and improved health and wellbeing by immersing themselves in nature. Alongside are views and expert tips on how to get the most from your garden experience, be it hands on or as a visitor. 

Rachel de Thame screen picIn her foreword to the booklet National Garden Scheme Ambassador, Rachel de Thame says: In a year like no other the confinement everyone had to endure, the anxiety and, in some cases, real tragedy has shown just how important gardens are to everyone’s physical health and mental wellbeing.    

“The pandemic forced the gates to close on many gardens in 2020 and as a result the National Garden Scheme decided to capture this unique moment in time in a report: Gardens and Coronavirus 2020 The importance of gardens and outdoor spaces during lockdown. Over 2,400 people contributed and helped confirm something that we knew anecdotally; that the power of gardens to do good has never been more important. Now, this lovely Little Yellow Book of Gardenand Health showcases the wonderful work and gardens within the Scheme. Just reading it will lift your spirits. Visiting a garden will do even more. 

Other contributors include best-selling author of The Well Gardened Mind Sue Stuart-Smithgarden designer and National Garden Scheme Trustee Arit Anderson, garden journalist Ian Hodgson and occupational therapist Lisa Shyamalan. 

“The booklet is designed to raise awareness of, and to celebrate, the myriad ways in which gardens are good for you and how the National Garden Scheme’s fundraising supports the nurturing benefits of gardens,” says National Garden Scheme Chief Executive, George Plumptre. “Whether you’re growing carrots in a window box or tending acres of herbaceous borders, recovering from a spinal injury, receiving treatment for cancer, grieving a loved one or simply coming out of lockdown in need of a lift you’ll find inspiration here. 

As more and more garden gates open to the public across the UK, what better way to celebrate than by recognising how central gardens, gardening and green spaces are to our health and wellbeing and treating yourself to a visit. 

As spinal injury patient Curtis says in his story: “Outside is like medicine.” 

Explore our Little Yellow Book of Gardens and Health here

– ENDS –


  • All case studies and stories contained in the book can be reproduced as long as they are in the context of the National Garden Scheme and the Little Yellow Book of Gardens and Health   
  • You can download the header image here please credit Pythouse Kitchen Garden, Wiltshire which opens for the National Garden Scheme on September 9th. 
  • For additional, accompanying images please contact [email protected]  
  • For more on Gardens and Health Week see: Gardens and Health – National Garden Scheme (ngs.org.uk) 
  • Campaign hashtag #GardensAndHealthWeek 

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