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Adding ornamental plants to your front garden can help you be happier



a vase of flowers sitting on top of a wooden table: MailOnline logo


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Growing just a few ornamental plants — such as daffodils or petunias — in a bare front garden can make people feel happier and less stressed, a study found.

Experts led from the Royal Horticultural Society planted blooms including azaleas, clematis and lavender in yards in low-income areas of Salford, Greater Manchester.

They then monitored the stress levels of the residents participating in the study — and explored how the additions to their gardens made them feel.



a vase of flowers sitting on top of a wooden table: Growing just a few ornamental plants ¿ such as daffodils or petunias, pictured ¿ in a bare front garden can make people feel happier and less stressed, a study found (stock image)


© Provided by Daily Mail
Growing just a few ornamental plants ¿ such as daffodils or petunias, pictured ¿ in a bare front garden can make people feel happier and less stressed, a study found (stock image)

The researchers recruited 42 residents — involving a total of 38 gardens — for the study, although some received their plants only after a year as so that they could serve as a control group in the meantime.

Residents were each given one tree, one shrub, one climber and enough smaller plants, bulbs and bedding plants to fill two containers.

They were not required to look after the plants, as the containers could ‘self water’ as they had a 22-litre in-built reservoir — the participants were encouraged to take part by gardening their plot, with help from the Royal Horticultural Society advisors.

The team measured each residents’ levels of key stress response hormone cortisol both before and after the plants were added.

They found a higher proportion of healthy daytime cortisol patterns after planting, suggesting that the residents had a better health status.

The research found that only 24 per cent of residents had healthy cortisol patterns before the plants went in, but over the year following the greening of the front gardens, this increased to 53 per cent.

Two Republican senators test positive for COVID-19, adding to uncertainty surrounding Supreme Court pick

The coronavirus outbreak gripping the White House spread to Capitol Hill on Friday morning, raising the prospect that the virus could disrupt Republicans’ plans to confirm Amy Coney Barrett to the Supreme Court before the November election.



a group of people standing in front of a building: Judge Amy Coney Barrett spoke after being nominated to the US Supreme Court by President Trump in the Rose Garden of the White House on Sept. 26. Several people who were in attendance, including the president, have since tested positive for COVID-19, imperiling Barrett's confirmation process.


© OLIVIER DOULIERY
Judge Amy Coney Barrett spoke after being nominated to the US Supreme Court by President Trump in the Rose Garden of the White House on Sept. 26. Several people who were in attendance, including the president, have since tested positive for COVID-19, imperiling Barrett’s confirmation process.

Two Republican members of the Senate Judiciary committee — Mike Lee of Utah, and Thom Tillis of North Carolina – revealed Friday that they have tested positive for the potentially deadly disease.

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Their positive diagnoses raised concerns that the virus had spread at a Saturday Rose Garden ceremony, at which Trump announced he was nominating Amy Coney Barrett to the Supreme Court.

The senators are among six people who attended the event, which featured few masks and little social distancing, who have since tested positive for the virus.

Trump, the first lady, and top Trump aide Hope Hicks all attended the event and subsequently tested positive, showing symptoms in the expected five- to seven-day window following the event. Also Friday, the president of the University of Notre Dame, the Rev. John Jenkins, announced he, too, had tested positive for COVID-19. Jenkins attended the Saturday Rose Garden ceremony.

Earlier in the week, Jenkins sent a letter to university students and staff apologizing for not wearing a mask during Saturday’s Rose Garden ceremony for Barrett, who is a Notre Dame graduate and law professor.

Video of the event also shows Lee unmasked and hugging other attendees.

Both Lee and Tillis said they would isolate for 10 days. Lee vowed in a statement that he