French gardens: Poetry in motion

It’s Gallic! A garden is a garden, but in France it is not that simple. The country seems to be full of Gardens of Eden and thus gardening is a highly emotional thing to do in the land of wine, baguettes and camembert.

For the average French garden lover gardening is something he could never do without. It is an inherent human need, a heart’s desire, a basic want. Thus, French bloggers tend to express their passionate fascination for gardening in a very poetic way. It is not just the garden itself that causes this rapture, but it is the practice of gardening, it is letting flowers, herbs and vegetables grow, it is experiencing Mother Nature – something a French garden lover would never call work. For him it is the creation of a sense of harmony and it is the connection of mankind with its origins. Consequently, their favourite garden trend is the feel-good garden. Especially for women the garden is a place where they can forget daily routines and the pressures of professional life. While relaxing and dreaming in their feel-good gardens many French wish their garden was much larger. However, also in France a lush and spacious garden is something for the upper class. Nevertheless, the French love their gardens – even if they are small – and corresponding to their mentality they endeavour to make the best of it. Thus, those who can’t have a large garden consider a kitchen garden as an interesting and affordable alternative. And again, bloggers who report about their kitchen garden on the web find very poetic words to describe it, for instance harvesting is magic, it’s best of the earth’s energy or listening to the voice of nature. It’s just French.

More Information: newsroom.husqvarna.com

 

Denmark, the land of garden parties

Danes are known for their Scandinavian laid-back mentality coupled with a strong joy of living. Their gardens play a vital role in their social life, because it is their favourite location to assemble, dine, drink and just enjoy the good things in life with friends and family. This, however, requires a special type of garden.

Due to the northern European weather conditions, Danes make full use of their gardens mainly in the summer months. The preferred Danish garden is a mixture of a social garden, a lush garden and a kitchen garden. By all means, the social aspect is being together with friends, family and neighbours outdoors. Therefore, the garden must have a pleasant ambience, and the Danish gardeners like it lush. The gardens are often colourful with playful designs and interesting artistry. The Danes tend to buck the trend and so their gardens usually reflect the nature and personality of their owners rather than any trend from a glossy garden magazine. Besides the social and lush aspects, the Danish garden must also provide enough room for growing herbs and vegetables. Unlike kitchen gardens in most other countries around the world, the Danes love experimenting with new variants of herbs and vegetables. For them, kitchen gardening is more than simply growing their own food, it is living the passion for the fine things in life: enjoying food and drink in good company. This is also reflected in most Danish blog posts and last but not least in the spending on gardening and outdoor living. On average the Danes spend 183 Euros (237 $) on their garden, which is the second highest spending per head and year on garden equipment in Europe.

More Information: newsroom.husqvarna.com

 

Gardening around the world

It is said that globalisation and modern communication techniques make our planet a smaller place. To a certain extent, this is definitely true, but still it is only half the story as can be seen when looking at garden lovers around the world.

There is one thing, apart from gardening, that gardeners all over the world have in common: Blogging and online gardening. Always in search of inspiration and advice, gardeners love to communicate with other like-minded people everywhere on the globe. The Swedish lawn-mower producer Husqvarna and the German garden equipment producer Gardena, which is also part of the Husqvarna Group, made use of the gardeners’ web affine manner and produced the Global Garden Report. Having analysed more than 1.4 million blog posts in 13 countries they received a very clear picture as to what is hot or not for garden lovers.

Although they found out that the idea of the personal garden paradise is strongly determined by different cultures and the respective zeitgeist in the particular countries, they could put up a top-ten-list of relevant garden trends. According to this list kitchen gardening is the gardeners’ favourite, followed by the organic garden and the feel-good garden. The designed and artistic garden as well as the re-creating wilderness completes the top five. The social garden, urban farming, the lush garden, container gardening and greenhouse gardening follow on positions six to ten. However, the report also reveals that what may be hot in Denmark may not in Norway. Within the next few weeks we will present summaries from the report for each of the surveyed 13 countries.

The full report is available here: newsroom.husqvarna.com

 

Gardening transforms from being “uncool” to “delightful”

Parents with children that do the gardening are amongst those lucky 15 per cent, whose kids’ favourite activities in the garden are not just playing or chilling. A recent survey carried out by Suttons Seeds shows that merely 15 % of young people aged between 15 and 24 do the gardening – at least occasionally.

Even when looking at the next age group, i.e. 25 to 34, this figure rises by only one per cent. According to the survey, teenagers do not see gardening as being “cool” and is simply non-existent for the vast majority of young people in their twenties. However, their attitude towards gardening changes once they are in their thirties. With the focus on career progression, marriage/partnership and home-making, people in their thirties tend to buy their first own house – naturally, with a garden. Now that they have their own garden, they want it to look nice and tidy. Out of necessity, the interest in gardening rises, but there is still a lack of knowledge. Ten years later, in their forties, interest and knowledge have significantly risen. From now on gardening is no longer just a chore; it has evolved into a delightful leisure activity. Another ten years later, when the former “gardening-isn’t-cool-teens” are in their fifties, they are very experienced gardeners with very good (13 %) or quite good (47 %) knowledge.

Garden or nature?

People today have a different look at nature than they had one or two decades ago. Nowadays nature is being defined as peace, relaxation and recreation, i.e. it’s meant to be the reverse to our stressful daily routine.

In a current survey carried out by the German Bundesamt für Naturschutz (Federal Office for Environmental Protection) people were asked, what they associate with the term “nature”. It did not really come as a surprise that the majority (47 %) of the interviewed said “forest”. Furthermore, 38 % thought of “meadows”, 33 % said “wildlife animals”, 27 % mentioned “trees” and still some 23 % said “flowers”. The rest of the list contained the terms lakes, mountains, plants, fields and rivers. It was, however, somewhat surprising that “garden” only came as the second last notion (14 %), followed by “sun” completing the list. So, a garden has not much to do with nature? But what is a garden then, if not nature? Interestingly enough, the majority of Germans considers themselves to be very ecoconscious. Even almost half of the German youth between 15 and 21 years of age are prepared to adjust their habits to the needs of the environment and the climate, but at the same time, they regard gardening as being “uncool”. The reasons for the misconception that garden isn’t nature may be manifold. However, it would help to change it, if more relevant information would be provided by the media, the schools and last but not least the parents. If parents showed their kids how much nature there is in every garden, they could come to the right conclusion: Garden is nature and gardening is part of nature protection.

More information: bfn.de