Dr. Jonathan Vrban is a medical practitionioner who has spent a lifetime helping his patients. Away from his professional activities, Jon Vrban engages in various outdoor activities, including gardening.
Research has shown that the benefits of gardening far exceed improving the aesthetic value of a person’s home or providing fresh fruits and vegetables. Individuals who regularly garden have been documented to experience lower levels of stress and to enjoy heightened mental clarity.
Additional studies have indicated that gardening might reduce the chances of serious medical conditions, such as high blood pressure and colon cancer. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention further note that engaging in moderately intense outdoor activities, including gardening, for at least 150 minutes per week can mitigate the risk of type 2 diabetes, stroke, depression, and premature death.
Other health benefits related to gardening have been far more specific. For example, the Multiple Benefits of Community Gardens study found a 10 percent increase in local green space to have health benefits on par with reducing a person’s age by five years. Gardening also has tangential benefits. For example, any activity that exposes a person to fresh air can lower the likelihood of developing attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). Exercise that stimulates the legs and arms, meanwhile, can help prevent coronary disease.
Dr. Jonathan Vrban, a Family Medicine practitioner, worked his whole career helping his patients and educating new medical residents. In his free time, Jonathan Vrban enjoys maintaining his yard as an amateur gardener.
Repotting plants is a skill all gardeners must learn at some point. It can be especially useful to repot plants in the late winter or early spring, when plants prepare themselves for springtime growth spurts. However, gardeners should not repot plants simply for the fun of it. Rather, they should remain vigilant for one or more signs that a plant is ready for a new, larger home.
Any plant that has ceased growing may be a prime candidate for repotting. Related physical indicators include a generally pale color and weak, straggly petals and leaves. Another visible sign is the appearance of a plant’s roots. If the roots have grown thick and tangled in a tight circle at the bottom of a pot, the plant should be repotted to allow the roots to expand. Similarly, if roots have begun to sprout from the bottom soil, potentially exceeding the parameters of the pot, gardeners should search for a larger pot.
In the event that a gardener waters his or her plants only to discover that the water has run to the bottom of the pot and drained without being absorbed by the plant, repotting is advisable. Any plant kept in a pot without drainage holes at the bottom should be repotted immediately. Finally, if a plant has grown top heavy and consistently falls to the side, a new, roomier pot should be secured for it.
Based in Honolulu, Hawaii, Jonathan Vrban maintains involvement in a vast array of professional and personal projects, honing his talents as a writer, chef, and gardener.