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Mental Health Awareness Week - The Power of Plants with Mayfield Nurseries

mayfield nursaries

This year Mental Health Awareness Week falls on 10 – 16 May and has a focus on Nature and how being nearer the great outdoors and all its wonders, can help improve our Mental Health.

Over the past year, most of us will be becoming accustomed to spending more time outdoors, enjoying walks and of course our own green spaces, but can gardening and the simple acts of pruning, planting, and growing be good for us? We find out with the help of one of our partners, Solent MIND, who run the Mayfield Nurseries in Mayfield Park, Southampton, which helps support people on the South coast with mental health issues through the act of horticulture.

As well as a working nursery, Mayfield is a social enterprise, open to the public for the sale of plants and sundries. All the money made in the tills is put straight back into the organisation helping them to support more people. This arm of Solent MIND charity supports people with mental health problems and other needs to gain confidence, social skills, practical skills and increase self-esteem, all through structured work and training in a friendly environment. The charity also runs workshops and horticultural group activities for people with Dementia.

Dan Angus, Head of Social Enterprise at Mayfield Nurseries, says their are huge benefits of gardening and it can have a real impact on the way you feel.

“We are all spending more time at home and dealing with difficult changes to everyday life. Here at Mayfield Nurseries we are aware of just how much of a positive impact gardening can have on our mental health and wellbeing and want to encourage more of you to discover your green fingers! Gardening provides routine, sense of purpose and accomplishment as you watch your plants grow, especially if you get to reap the rewards of freshly grown fruit or vegetables.

“The physical act of gardening triggers serotonin and other endorphins to be released in the body. Serotonin is our natural feel-good hormone, which promotes mental wellbeing. Working with plants gives us an opportunity to nurture and care for a living thing, which has enormous psychological benefits.”

Ever heard of the expression "shinrin-yoku"? The Japanese phrase translates as "forest bathing," which encompasses the feeling of being immersed in green. The Woodland Trust has given the movement it’s backing and have said that "shinrin-yoku" gives people the opportunity to take time out, slow down and connect with nature. A chemical released by trees and plants, called phytoncides, has also been found to boost the immune system.

“Working in the garden can also build up your muscle strength, increase stamina, improve balance, mobility and ultimately, confidence. Being outdoors can also help you sleep better and boosts your mood!”

Want to find out more or get involved? Visit Mayfields Nurseries

Patient Advice and Liaison Service (PALS)

Please visit our services page for specific services and contact details. Alternatively, contact our Patient Advice and Liaison Service by emailing or calling the number below. You can also give us feedback, make a complaint or share a compliment.

pals@solent.nhs.uk

 0800 013 2319

*Lines are open Monday to Friday 8.30am to 5pm

The Freedom of Information (FOI) Act was passed on 30 November 2000. It gives a general right of access to all types of recorded information held by public authorities, with full access granted in January 2005.

The Act sets out exemptions to that right and places certain obligations on public authorities.

Email: InformationGovernanceTeam@solent.nhs.uk

Phone: 0300 123 3919

*Subject to any exemptions which apply, we are obliged to provide the information requested please note that requests for Personal Information is not covered under this Act and should be applied for through the Data Protection Act 1998.

Our administrative and managerial centre is based in Southampton.

While our services can be found around various NHS locations in Southampton and Portsmouth (and surrounding districts), our administrative and managerial centre is based in Southampton at:

Highpoint Venue
Bursledon Road
Southampton
SO19 8BR

If you require a printable version of how to find us including bus times, car access and bike info please download our leaflet. (Copyright of Highpoint Venue).

Central office phone: 0300 123 3390

*Lines open Monday to Friday 9am to 5pm.

If you are a journalist with a media enquiry, please contact the Communications Team at:

communications@solent.nhs.uk 

0300 123 4156 or 02381 031076

The Communications Office is open Monday to Friday 9am to 5pm.