Get down to Earth... with Gardening is Good For You! #GIGFY

Company: HTA
  • Planting a winter pot - skimmia heather gaultheria © Adam Pasco Media

It’s all change in the garden this month as autumn colour and falling foliage transforms trees, shrubs and borders. It’s a wonderful sight that brings the gardening year to a spectacular end.

Keep gardeners active with the ‘Gardening is Good for You!’ campaign, supported by National Garden Gift Vouchers.

Autumn is a busy season, with plenty to tempt us outside. There’s summer bedding to clear away, border perennials to cut down, veg plots to clear, and leaves to collect and convert into valuable leafmould to use for mulching and feeding the soil.

Gardening throughout the year brings with it many benefits, like keeping us active in the fresh air, while direct contact with soil has been shown to be valuable to our mental health and wellbeing. Research has demonstrated the value of ‘earthing’ or ‘grounding’ in the alleviation of health problems, relieving stress, and improving our mood and restful sleep.

Research around the world continues to highlight the many benefits of gardening, and although the benefits of direct contact with soil and friendly bacteria aren’t yet fully understood they indicate what many people believe … gardening is great therapy!


Some friendly bacteria found in the soil may act on our brain like antidepressants. Research on mice by University College London and Bristol University found that a common soil bacteria acts on brain cells to stimulate production of the ‘happy chemical’ serotonin, altering mood in a similar way to antidepressants.


Autumn is a good time for planning and planting, establishing plants into warm soil before the onset of winter. Help customers to choose plants suited to their soil, site and conditions.

Large patio pots, tubs, troughs and baskets can also be planted with a selection of evergreen, flowering and berrying plants to provide colour and interest over the cold winter months ahead.

Many bare-rooted plants are only available from the autumn offering great value for hedging and planting projects.

Seasonal favourites include:

  • Skimmia varieties eg Skimmia ‘Magic Marlot’
  • Gaultheria mucronata
  • Cyclamen hederifolium AGM
  • Mahonia ‘Charity’ and ‘Winter Sun’ AGM
  • Viburnum x bodnantense ‘Dawn’ and ‘Charles Lamont’ AGM
  • Autumn Flowering Camellia eg C. sasanqua ‘Narumigata’ AGM
  • Callicarpa ‘Profusion’ AGM
  • Dogwood varieties (Cornus)
  • Garrya elliptica ‘James Roof’ AGM
  • Heathers

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