Busy millennials are turning to gardening to alleviate stress levels, feeding a growing online nursery industry.
With no time to go to the nursery down the road, young green thumbs have been buying their hybrid tea roses over the net.
The annual Gardening Enthusiast Association survey revealed that over one third of gardeners are millennials. Over half of millennial gardeners exclusively purchase their gardening needs online, the survey found.
Follow-up interviews with a group of young gardeners who participated in the survey found that top reasons for gardening include relaxation and having a sense of accomplishment.
Hobby gardeners have been obtaining not just easily shipped seeds but also entire plants and trees, which are sent by courier.
Mike Paxton, a 29 year old working three jobs in hospitality, says he swapped video games for gardening and improved his life.
“Gaming made me angry, but gardening makes me relaxed,” he says.
“Feeling the dirt with your bare hands is a spiritual experience, it makes me feel connected and grounded. I am at one with my plants. Now, I tend to my garden once a week or I start to feel too stressed out.”
Some millennials, living with their parents, tend to the garden in lieu of paying board.
This is the situation for Daniel Phillips, a 32 year old between jobs and living with his mother.
“I took up gardening because my mum said I never do anything,” he says.
“Well, now she gets to enjoy looking at the weeping roses every day. I really feel like I’m getting something done.”
The interviews also found that millennials favour the inclusion of practical greenery in their gardens.
A trend was away from plants and towards trees- fruit and nut bearing trees were most prized for bringing fresh produce literally into gardeners’ backyards.