Gardening influencer Ellen Mary reveals how families can reconnect with nature in their own garden
Gardens can bolster wellbeing for both children and adults, so if you are lucky enough to have one, make the most of it.
“There is nature everywhere, and spotting it, even in the most unlikely places, can give a much better understanding of how we are all connected – to nature, not our phones,” said Ellen.
Here, she offers her top tips on how you and your children can reconnect with nature in your own garden.
Take a walk in your garden with some paper and a crayon.
Trace the bark of a tree, if you have one, and a fallen leaf to stick on the paper by your tracing.
Look closely at the tree, identify it, touch the bark and the leaves.
Back inside, put it on your fridge.
Each time you look at your tracing, remember how you felt in the garden, the smells and the air on your face.
Get your socks off!
Put your shoes aside.
Feel liberated by walking outside on the lawn or a soft outdoor surface with bare feet.
Feel the natural negative charge from the earth being absorbed through the soles of your feet.
Allow it to happen, accept it.
Breathe deeply and relax.
Spot a star constellation
Did you ever stare at the stars as a child and wonder what they are?
Glistening in the sky, light years away. It’s really good fun identifying star constellations but if you can’t work out where Orion is, make your own shapes in the sky like a dot-to-dot drawing.
Sow some seeds
Be mindful and sow some seeds. Before you do, feel the seeds in your hand. What is the texture, shape, size? Look close at the detail – does each seed differ? Smell them and if they are edible, taste them.
Be marvelled at the way those tiny seeds become big fruits, vegetables or flowers.
See life beneath
Picking up a large stone from your garden, your children will be able to marvel at the life beneath.
They’ll be fascinated by the woodlice, ants, worms and beetles. Revisit those memorable moments with your children, lifting a stone in your garden and encouraging the children to stay inquisitive and keep looking.