COVID-19 inspires a generation of young gardeners

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Katie Roselieb plants Bonnie Plants Harvest Select vegetable plants in her raised garden bed. The collection is specifically designed to help home growers have a more successful harvest as more young people start gardens to grow their own fresh food. (Photo Courtesy: Bonnie Plants)

UNION SPRINGS, Ala. –  As Americans stayed home to flatten the COVID-19 curve, many took up new hobbies.

A new national survey by Bonnie Plants found that younger generations have been inspired to raise their own herbs and vegetables.

The survey found that 30 percent of those who plan to grow their own food are gardening for the first time, with 65 percent of those gardeners listing the pandemic as the number one reason they chose to grow their own edibles.

More vegetable and herb gardens are being planted in small spaces like containers, balconies and patios. A new national survey by Bonnie Plants reveals the boom in gardening is driven by younger generations and was accelerated during the COVID-19 pandemic. (Photo Courtesy: Bonnie Plants)

“It’s an easy way to safely get outside and stay active,” said Amy Enfield, a horticulturist for Bonnie Plants. “There are some people who also may be a little worried about food shortages, and growing your own food is a great way to make sure that you have what you want later in the season.”

The survey showed that nearly two in five Americans under 35 now grow their own herbs or vegetables. 

Enfield encourages novice gardeners to start small, choosing a few varieties that are easy to grow, like snacking peppers, compact tomatoes and summer squash.

Sharing the extra vegetables with neighbors or a local food pantry is a great way to give back and create a sense of community during this difficult time.

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