Flowers will make you happy - May 15, 2010

If you're feeling sad, instead of reaching for the chocolate, why don't you go out into the garden and look at the flowers? Scientists have found that flowers in your garden will make you feel happy. 

During the drought people stopped planting flowers because they were seen as water wasters. Flowers were replaced by boring strappy leafed Cordylines that now seem to be in epidemic proportions. Take a drive through any of the new housing estates and you will see cordylines and pebbles in almost every garden.

The problem with these "no maintenance" gardens is they require no maintenance. Once upon a time we went out in our gardens on the weekends, we dug up the soil , planted flowers and then nurtured them until they came into flower and made us happy. We knew our neighbour's names and our kids played out in the garden too. Everyone was skinner then and the gym was something we watched at the olympics on T.V.

Today I had a customer who came into the nursery just to look at the flowers, she had a smiling face, " I just needed to get out in the garden, " she said. I thought this was funny because she was in my garden. In the afternoon I took down our hanging baskets and replaced the tired old Petunias with flowering Pansies and blue Lobelias. These will flower for 6 months and make me smile every time I come to work.

Tim Pickles is a CNP horticulturist and director of Tim's Garden Centre 2 Queen St Campbelltown 46267022.