Gardening is having its moment as it becomes an upward trend amongst millennials, with younger households enjoying gardening at an all-time high of 29%. The pastime, once only associated with older people, has everyone from the fashion world to celebrity circles now wanting a ‘green haven’ in their vicinity. However, what they don’t want to admit is that they do not have the time or confidence to garden.
The new generation of plant lovers are taking to social media to show off their new-found gardening ‘prowess’, as trend-watchers now report that more and more millennials are bringing the outdoors indoors, welcoming cacti, aloes and air plants into their homes.
The overall gardening retail market is currently worth over £5bn annually and there is plenty of room for gift and home suppliers to get in on the action with products and ranges that harmonise well with indoor greenery and reflect the importance of this trend in an age of heightened environmental awareness.
Whilst fashion icons like Kate Moss are expressing their love for all things leafy, influencers like Alexa Chung and Kelly Brooks are also on a mission to make gardening sexy. Other, more health-conscious celebs like Reese Witherspoon, Jake Gyllenhaal and Sienna Miller have even taken to gardening to grow their own produce.
Late Bloomers – eager gardeners in their 30s and 40s who are still lacking confidence; Millennial Gardeners born between the early 80s and 00s, a trendy crowd that discovered gardening on social media and find it fits into their obsession with self-improvement, wellness and credibility; Eco-Gardeners seeking a more sustainable way to garden and the Entertainers, who desire to turn their garden into an entertainment area, boosting sales across garden furniture sets, outdoor lighting, and barbecues.
Thanks to the power of social media, green-thumbed millennials are switching on to the latest gardening trends including ‘fashionable’, low-maintenance plants that increase your social ‘cred’. According to Pinterest, searches for indoor plants in general increased by 90% in 2017 with ‘Terrariums’, ‘Cactus plants’ and Tropical plants’ also moving up in the ranks.
According to a recent survey by The Student Room, millennials not only count on gardening as a hobby:
• 72% of millennials have helped someone else with their gardening
• 79% have grown a plant
• 75% enjoy growing plants but do not have the space
• 51% watched a range of gardening programmes
• 7% would consider horticulture as a career
Social media is a primary contributing factor to gardening’s growth in popularity, ‘instagrammable’ cultivations also known as ‘plant porn’ have even dethroned ‘food porn’ as interest in garden-related content online continues to surge. However, the likes of Twitter and Instagram are not the only ones to contribute to recent interest. As self-care becomes more of a ‘hot topic, gardening fits right in with this shift in life’s priorities. Plants that benefit your health and transform small, otherwise unappealing spaces into havens of tranquillity.
• Nano-gardening – as living spaces are getting smaller, urban gardeners are having to get smarter with the way they use the space available to them. Traditional grassy lawns and rambling veggie patches are out.
• Beautiful balconies – those lucky enough to rent a flat with some decent balcony space have started to adopt balcony gardening, experimenting with things like fragrant herbs and shady jungle plants
• Greenery – not just 2017’s colour of the year, Greenery seems to have stuck counting millennials as big fans. A published Garden Trends Report for 2018 also revealed 66% of people grow edible plants in the kitchen. The ‘grow your own’ movement is not slowing down anytime soon.
• Breath of fresh air – Google searches for ‘air purifying plants’ and ‘aloe vera’ were up a whopping 550% year on year in 2017. Likewise, Compost Direct also reports that 52% of people are using houseplants to purify the air in their homes.
Although gardening is becoming more and more popular amongst the younger generations, Airtasker research has shown that it is also one of the largest tasks that people are willing to outsource. Gardening may be ‘hot’ right now but the maintenance aspect them is far from ‘sexy’, additionally, research also found that 30% of people simply do not have the skills or tools to garden themselves.
Young people are becoming more mindful of the benefits of greenery. That said, with less space and less time, modern gardeners are looking for outside help to incorporate into their everyday gardening practices.