UK: Even a ‘tiny patch of nature’ in a front garden reduces stress and makes people happier

Adding just a few plants to a bare front garden can lower stress levels and help people feel happier, research suggests.

Researchers introduced ornamental plants such as juniper, azaleas, clematis, lavender, daffodil bulbs and petunias into small bare front yards in economically deprived streets in Salford, Greater Manchester.

The study by the Royal Horticultural Society and the universities of Sheffield, Westminster, and Virginia in the US then measured the stress levels of residents taking part in the scheme and asked them how they felt.

Some 42 residents with 38 gardens were involved in the study, with one group starting a year later to act as a control group.

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