5/8/2018 – SALT LAKE CITY, Utah(News4Utah) The weather is warming up, and that means more people will spend time outside. For some, it's a great time to do a little gardening. The Salt Lake Health Department says it's a great way to stay healthy as well. Emmalee Price, a health educator with the Salt Lake County Health Department, joined Brian Carlson, to explain why.
Gardening can be a great way to get outdoors, be active, and eat healthy. Price describes some benefits to gardening:
- Provides nutritious fruits and veggies for your dinner table (no added preservatives, sugars, pesticides, etc.) – you know exactly where your food is coming from!
- Increases exposure to Vitamin D – this increases your calcium levels, benefiting your bones and immune system
- Can decrease dementia risk
- Stress reliever and mood booster
- Enjoyable exercise! – pulling weeds, reaching for plants and tools, and twisting and bending while in the garden all help work your muscles, increasing strength, flexibility, and your stamina
- In cases with community gardens, it helps combat loneliness
Here are some gardening basics to help you get started:
- Location, location, location – be sure to read your plant's description to know exactly what they need in terms of sunlight and shade
- Timing and Type – research the best time to plant your specific plants
- Start simple – Some plants are easier to grow than others, start with those! (Tomatoes, peppers, onions, chard, and others)
- Water – make sure you're watering your plants daily; general rule of thumb is about an inch/week
If you don't have space for your own garden, Price says Community Gardens are becoming increasingly popular. Find out if your community has one by visiting this website: