There’s no better sign that winter is finally over than that of budding springtime perennials. For me, it’s seeing the emerging stalks of my peonies, daylilies and hostas magically appearing overnight. In the midst of uncertainty, reconnecting with nature can bring a sense of reassurance and calm. Furthermore, countless studies have shown that the side effects of a regular dose of gardening include stress reduction, healthier eating habits, increased physical fitness and longevity, to name a few.
Now is the perfect time to get to work tending or prepping your landscape, backyard, garden boxes, trellises and even counters for spring flowers, summer foliage and edible plants such as fruits and veggies. Here are some online resources to get you started.
To spark your creativity and discover the best options for your living space and personal interests, check out Better Homes and Gardens, Rodale’s Organic Life, Country Gardens and Mother Earth News, all available through RBdigital Magazines.
Looking for local inspiration? The University of Illinois Extension: Horticulture has advice for managing a wide variety of lawns and gardens specific to the region of Illinois. Online gardening webinars are also available. No matter the size or design of your living space, there are gardening options for all.
Another fun aspect of gardening is the welcoming habitat it creates for wildlife. Considered gardening with an environmental purpose by planting a pollinator garden that helps to sustain butterfly, bee and other vital pollinating insect populations. Visit U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service's How to Build a Pollinator Garden for helpful tips and guides.
Last by not least is The Old Farmer’s Almanac: Gardening. This tried and true resource, familiar to seasoned gardeners, provides a wealth of information for all levels of experience including region-specific planting calendars, growing plant guides, space guides, gardening podcasts and how-to-videos.
Visit the National Gardening Association for a guide to Pandemic Gardening specific to the COVID-19 outbreak.
What’s your favorite gardening tip?