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Don Davis: Gardening is trending in new year | Lifestyle | newsadvance.com

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Americans are going to unplug from modern life and put more value on connecting with the natural world through gardening. This is one of the trends for 2019 identified in the 18th annual garden trends report produced by Garden Media Group, a public relations firm in Philadelphia.

Last year, consumers spent more than ever before on lawns and gardens, an average of $503 per household. Many of them were trying to experience nature and combat stress caused by being indoors too much, coexisting with computers, phones and televisions.

The new generation aged 18 to 34 accounted for 29 percent of all gardening households. Millennials are embracing the gardening lifestyle in droves.

Indoors is the new outdoors. Houseplants have surged in popularity, particularly cacti, succulents and tropical plants such as fiddle leaf fig and Swiss cheese plant.

Young people are driving this trend as many of them accept the responsibility of being plant parents with a sense of purpose. Houseplants fill an emotional and environmental void, and 30 percent of American households bought at least one of them last year.

More gardening time and less screen time is good for mental and physical health. Gardening makes it easy to learn about confidence, trust, nurturing, patience, delayed gratification and how to care for the Earth.

Composting is the new recycling as society strives for zero waste, zero landfill and zero emissions. A drive to ban plastic straws and other single-use plastics is gathering steam nationwide.

You can call it the global insect collapse, thinning of the insects or silence of the insects. Numbers of flying insects such as butterflies and bees are down all over the world, signaling a crisis in the animal kingdom that also affects humans.

To help them, you can plant an insect garden with native flowers, shrubs and trees. Many companies sell seed mixes formulated to attract and feed pollinating insects.

Robo-gardening is on the horizon along with other new technologies to make gardening easier. Wireless devices to monitor weather and soil moisture, camera-equipped drones and solar-powered robots with laser vision and artificial intelligence to do your planting, watering, weeding and mowing could begin to catch on.

Gardeners are turning toward the moon for advice on timing, just as their ancestors did eons ago. Their deep desire to be in tune with nature draws them into the age-old practice of planting, weeding, pruning and harvesting according to phases of the moon.

Moon gardens have been getting to be more popular. They feature plants with white, gray and silver color to reflect moonlight, plus night flowering plants such as flowering tobacco, angels’ trumpet and moon flower that attract sphinx moth and other night flying pollinators.

Mint is the color and flavor of 2019. The mint you grow to put in drinks and food is also a magnet for pollinating insects in search of nectar. Blue green mint-colored flowers are said to be fresh and oxygenating, bring a spirit of life, renewal and energy.

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https://www.newsadvance.com/lifestyles/don-davis-gardening-is-trending-in-new-year/article_21cf9852-1c96-5285-aa38-9418d6dba011.html

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