We're calling for the nation to drop their devices, consider picking up a spade and gardening as part of our Greening Great Britain campaign – to help everyone's health, wellbeing and the environment.
A new Ipsos MORI study has shown that nearly a third of people will spend nine hours or more on smartphones outside of work and school. This compares to less than one in 20, who have an outside space at home, spending the same time gardening. When seeing plants on social media, three quarters of people said they feel positive, but only a small number share what they've been doing in a garden or feature a garden they've visited – which when they do, really inspires others.
Plants and green places really do make people feel better with nearly four in five of 11 to 18 year olds saying they feel positive when they see plants or flowers on their social media feed and 25 to 34 year olds the most likely to share posts about them.
Sue Biggs, RHS Director General said: “We’re not saying put down your smartphone or devices forever, we’re just suggesting that a bit less time on them and more time out in nature would be fantastic for our wellbeing. Going by these results, if you get gardening you’re likely to feel healthy, productive and calm – plus if you share your beautiful pictures on social after all your gardening efforts or visits, you’ll be making others feel more positive too."
Get social with us...
Tell us what you’re doing to support Greening Great Britain by using the #GreeningGreatBritain hashtag on social media. Post a photo or video to show us what you’re growing and tag the RHS on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram – we'll be sharing our favourite posts.
Top tips to get you greening
1. Trim your lawn edges, pull out weeds and tidy up overgrown hedges – it's amazing how much better gardens look after this.
2. Sow hardy flower seeds; wild meadow flowers, cornfield annuals and garden flowers such as love-in-a-mist, fiery marigolds and sunflowers will get a great start.
3. Good things to eat come from seeds sown now – lettuces, peas, broad beans, broccoli, sweet pointed cabbages, carrots and salads are all easy to grow.
4. Revitalise any sad, abandoned tubs, troughs and other containers with fresh peat free potting compost and plant out summer bedding plants – remembering to have an old curtain or similar to put over them if any night frosts threaten in the next few weeks.
5. If you don't have a garden, join the huge trend to become an indoor gardener and grow house plants - now is the perfect time to repot your house plants and care for them.
Visit that plant centre or nursery, treat yourself and take a plant home to grow and love.
Find out more...
* The Ipsos Mori study was commissioned by the RHS in March 2019 to over 2,500 11 to 75 year olds.