In his 2019 essay on the healing powers of gardens, the late neurologist Oliver Sacks attempted to capture the mysterious healing effects of nature on the human body.
“I cannot say exactly how nature has its calming and organizing effects on our brain,” writes Sacks, “but I have seen the restorative and healing powers of nature and gardens in my patients, even for those who are neurologically strong are disabled. In many cases, gardens and nature are stronger than any medicine, ”he states. “Of course, nature calls to something very deep within us.”
Few would argue against the idea that gardens are good for our health and wellbeing, even if, like Sacks, we don’t know exactly why or how. So it’s no wonder that Covid-19 has triggered a revival in gardening, with many people expressing their fears on backyard plots, potted plants, or window sills lined with herbs. If we limit ourselves to our homes with limited opportunities to connect with others, it is a form of home improvement that is guaranteed to offer some level of happiness to see something bloom in our immediate surroundings.