World Mental Health Day 2020 - Make Your Garden a Haven
At Chic Teak, we believe your garden should be your sanctuary - a haven from the stresses and strains of daily life.
It’s no surprise that there has been a resurgence of gardening during 2020, with problems of a global scale causing added stress and anxiety for nearly everyone. Having a corner of the world that we can escape too, is more important than ever. In fact, it’s essential for our health, happiness and wellbeing.
Research shows that spending time outdoors is good for our mental and physical health, helping us to de-stress and relax. Connecting with nature helps us feel grounded when the world around us feels overwhelming – planting seeds, nurturing them and watching them grow is a simple but powerful act of mindfulness.
Just looking at green spaces has been shown to relax the mind and give a sense of calm, with doctors in some countries even administering ‘green prescriptions’ for patients with anxiety and depression. But it’s not all about getting your hands dirty (although this is also proven to have health benefits!), the joy of simply sitting in nature and enjoying your surroundings is therapeutic.
Whether you have a small balcony or a vast garden, we believe that anyone can benefit from spending more time in nature. Here are our top tips for turning your garden into your own personal oasis:
1. Ignite the Senses
A simple, limited colour palette is perfect for creating a calm and contemporary space. Think green shrubs, lush grasses, and ornamental trees with an occasional splash of colour alongside garden furniture made from beautiful, natural materials. Alternatively, a riot of colour might be more your style, with brightly coloured flowers in all shapes and sizes creating a joyful display.
The sensory elements of your garden should never be underestimated. Include a water feature to create a soothing background noise that evokes feelings of tranquillity and makes a striking focal point. Choose fragrant plants that you find calming, like lavender, gardenia or clematis, colours that spark joy, and of course - garden furniture that reflects your personal style.
2. Make It Private
It’s human nature to want to feel safe and protected, that’s why enclosed spaces often feel more comfortable. Secluding an area of your garden with thoughtfully placed screens, panels and planters can create your own secret hideaway. Try doing this around a seated area where you want to relax and unwind.
Even if your garden is overlooked, the addition of hedges, trees, or a pergola covered in roses can bring just enough shelter to retreat into.
3. Encourage Wildlife
Nurturing our small piece of the environment can have a huge impact on local wildlife and our sense of wellbeing.
Planting lots of wildlife-friendly plants to attract butterflies, birds and bees can provide the perfect distraction from the stresses of everyday life. A carefully placed bird feeder and water table will keep your garden buzzing with life, and maybe help keep your eyes off your phone for a little while longer.
4. Embrace the Seasons
As the days grow shorter and the chill in the air grows sharper, it can be tempting to retreat indoors until springtime. But taking the time to connect with nature during the colder seasons is so beneficial to our wellbeing. There is beauty to be found in the colours of autumn and the frost-covered branches of winter. Planting evergreen shrubs, such as azaleas, brings structural interest and colour throughout the year.
There is always work to do in the garden, if you want it. Sow a packet of sweet peas in the autumn for an earlier and more abundant show of these highly scented flowers. Pop some spring bulbs into pots and know that soon there will be a fresh show of colour to enjoy.
5. Make it Comfortable
A comfortable outdoor space has never been more important. Create an area where you can sit quietly and contemplate life or socialise with friends and family. Choose comfortable and stylish garden furniture and, if you can, place it near flowers, a water feature, or in view of a bird feeder.
Place pots of herbs nearby. Fresh basil to add to salads and mint to pep up a cocktail or make a refreshing cup of tea. Running your hands over a pot of chamomile is a sensory treat. Soft seat cushions, outdoor blankets and decorative lighting will make your garden a magical place to spend time as the night draws in.
Our beautiful teak furniture is designed for style and comfort alike - browse our website or contact us and let our creative designers work collaboratively with you to create a unique piece for your haven.
And finally, don’t forget to make time to enjoy your garden. Bring a cup of coffee outside in the morning and wake up to the sound of birdsong. Escape for a quick walk around your flowerbeds at lunchtime, if you work from home. And in the evening, wrap up in a blanket and watch the sun go down from your favourite spot.
The Chic Teak Team