How a Vegetable Garden Can Relieve Your Stress This Summer

Take a break from online learning and give your kids a science lesson outdoors.

The art and practice of gardening has long been known to be a natural stress reliever, and if ever there was a time for that, it’s today. In fact, gardening is probably the simplest way you can enjoy nature, be productive, and get a quick — or long— mental health break.

“We need to get away from all the technology and we need to relax,” says Sue Adams of Adams Fairacre Farms. “Nature is very nurturing. We really need that, especially now. A lot of people have jobs where you don’t see the results. With gardening, you see what you’ve planted. You get to enjoy the results.”

Under COVID-19 laws, stores that sell food-producing plants have been allowed to stay open. Adams notes that “plant sales are up and seed sales have been through the roof. In the past it was hard to get people to buy seeds. And they’d say, ‘Oh no, I’m not successful with seeds.’ So I’m hoping they will be,” she laughs.

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As far as what to plant in June, “you can grow everything.” If the soil in your yard is not the perfect growing condition you may want to consider “a raised bed and filling that with soil,” recommends Adams. “Then you also don’t have to bend down so far and it’s easier to work with.”

A container garden is another option. “I always recommend a large container for vegetables, at least 14 to 16 inches.” For June, she recommends putting a tomato plant in the container and putting some herbs around it. “They go well together, and you have your very own spaghetti sauce pot. “

Vegetable gardens are also great for kids. “Plants are a wonderful teacher. They teach patience. They teach science. They show kids where their food is coming from and how they grow.

“When my daughter was 3, I let her plant peas because they were a big seed and it was easy for her to handle. I had peas everywhere, in the flower garden, vegetable garden. It didn’t matter. She had a great time planting peas. And we had a rule: She could go on the vegetable garden and pick and eat anything she wanted to. And I would see her with the neighborhood kids in the vegetable garden, eating lettuce and all kinds of things. They had a great time.”

For more about what to plant in June, go to the Easy Vegetable Gardening tab at On the general gardening tab you will also find seed-starting and container design tips, as well as a tomatoes FAQ.

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