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GardenSMART :: 7 Reasons Why Millennials Love Gardening and You Should Too

7 Reasons Why Millennials Love Gardening and You Should Too

By Joan Casanova, spokeswoman for Bonnie Plants
Photographs courtesy of Bonnie Plants

The stereotype: Millennials spend more time interacting with the digital world than the natural world around them. The reality: Five million of the six million people who took up gardening in 2015 were millennials, according to the 2016 National Gardening Survey.

More millennials (people between the ages of 21 and 34) than any other age group are falling in love with gardening. As a hobby, gardening is a great fit for the millennial mindset and lifestyle, which emphasize individuality, independence and value. However, the advantages of gardening that attract millennials are also relevant to every age group, and anyone who wants to begin growing a nutritious, healthful food garden.

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Here are seven reasons why more millennials than ever are taking up food gardening, and why you should, too:

1. Gardening fosters better nutrition.

Millennials care about good nutrition and knowing where their food comes from. Multiple studies show members of the generation are health conscious, and understand the relationship between the food they eat, good nutrition and good health. Millennials know fresh vegetables deliver great nutrition, and millennial gardeners know that growing their own veggies and herbs also means they can put more nutritious food on the table. With transplant purveyors like Bonnie Plants offering more than 250 varieties of popular, heirloom, hybrid, new and tried-and-true vegetables and herbs, it's easy to grow a garden full of healthy, nutritious, economical food.

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2. You can save money in the grocery store.

Millennials are into saving money. Eighty percent have a budget, 72 percent are saving for retirement and 51 percent have an emergency fund, according to a TD Ameritrade survey. Gardening can allow you to spend less in the grocery store produce aisle — and that kind of saving savvy appeals to millennials as well as any other age group!

3. Gardening is good for the environment.

Awareness of environmental issues and a desire for healthful products that contribute to ecological balance are hallmarks of the millennial generation. A Nielsen study found millennials care about environmental issues and find ways to personally support a healthy environment. When you grow your own vegetables and herbs, "food miles" — the distance a food item is transported from producer to consumer — shrinks substantially and includes only the distance from your kitchen to your own backyard. Buying from Bonnie Plants will also reduce "food miles" and your carbon footprint; Bonnie Plants has 70+ growing facilities, serving the 48 contiguous states, and plants are trucked to retailers. That translates to: The plants you buy at your local retailer were grown only a truck ride away. Bonnie is your local grower!

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4. You can grow a garden anywhere.

While many millennials are city dwellers, others live in suburbs. The fact that they can garden anywhere — on a city balcony, urban patio or suburban backyard — makes gardening the perfect hobby for them. By using transplants, caged and patio ready varieties and combos from Bonnie Plants, all gardeners can create a backyard garden plot, a vertical garden in an alleyway between city buildings, or a container garden on a balcony or deck.

5. The garden is a great place to come together as a family.

It's true that millennials make the most use of digital devices of any generation; they also value deep family relationships. Planting a garden with their children, significant others or friends allows everyone to spend enriching time together, working toward an enjoyable, shared goal. Every generation can appreciate that.

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6. Gardening can be a challenge anyone can achieve.

Working toward a goal and having a vision are very important qualities for millennials. Gardening takes time and effort but with the right resources and information, it's something virtually anyone can succeed at. Millennials turn to online resources, like Bonnie Plants' vegetable and herb growing guides, gardening how-to's, videos and recipes to help them achieve and ensure success, and you should too!

7. Gardening can be an adventure.

Sixty-four percent of millennials say they love to cook, and 75 percent enjoy eating cuisine from other cultures, according to a survey by Barkley. For a generation of adventurous eaters and cooks, gardening can be an opportunity to grow and try new things, from exotic herbs to new varieties of vegetables, all the while saving money by growing their own.

With millennials now dominating the workforce, and many starting families and reaching their peak earning years, it's likely their interest in gardening will continue to grow. We can all relate to gardening, good nutrition, new and different variety choices, saving money in the produce aisle, reducing our carbon footprint, small-space solutions and certainly to the joy and community of gardening. Keep growing!

 


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