GARDENING – “There were only a few hundred of us in France a few years ago. There are now several thousand of them!”, estimates the founder of the site Diana’s plantsoften asked for her advice on indoor plants.
This is the advantage of all these accounts on which you just have to scroll to collect tips, advice and simple, economical, fun but above all effective remedies: no need to have a green thumb. Do you want to see an avocado tree flourish in your living room? No more rushing to a garden centre.
“During the health crisis and more particularly during the confinements, many people found themselves without anything to do and started to cultivate plants”, explains “Peter the Farmer″gardening enthusiast and self-taught, HuffPost.
Simplicity and accessibility
At the heart of the success of online gardening for a wide audience of amateurs, simplicity. This is how posts that share a technique for growing an avocado seed, or tips for controlling pests or diseases generate many views and comments.
According to Lina, behind the TikTok account Pragmatic Botany, there is a desire to return to the methods of our elders. “From now on, all social classes and all generations want to go back to simple and healthy things. There is no longer any cleavage due to social categorization”, she analyses.
The enthusiasm is such that for some, this passion almost becomes a second job. Like the plant freak behind the account 40years4childrenwho created his second account MissCrazyPlants, dedicated to gardening in front of the enthusiasm aroused by its stories. Or Diana, who was spotted by France 3 and wrote a book gathering tips for starting a collection of houseplants after being noticed for this activity.
Support, sharing and benevolence
But beyond the simple advice and tips provided by these amateur gardeners, it would seem that it is the spirit of sharing that reigns on these accounts that also appeals to their followers. Because very often, the contact does not stop at simple requests for advice or help by private messaging. Pierre receives, for example, photos of people who had contacted him for advice, had asked him for help in treating a sick plant or saving a vegetable garden infested with pests. They show him the result, success and warmly thank him. “Receiving these photos and messages of thanks makes me extremely happy,” he concludes.
A feeling shared by Lina. “There is an important social dimension. The gardening activity is subject to discussion, exchange and sharing. Social media is proof of that. Everyone, wherever they are, sometimes even across the language barrier, will be able to give their opinion, share their experience on this or that plant. I think it’s a real community made up of very diverse profiles who manage to share and open up to others thanks to this subject. And that’s really great!”, she confides to the HuffPost.
The positive and grateful feedback was not long in coming. “I tested, it’s great!”, “My grandfather used to do that!”, posted in the comments allow to generate exchanges between members or amateur gardeners, to improve their knowledge from others. “It’s a virtuous circle,” adds Lina, who is increasingly involved in her videos, motivated by the exchanges and thanks from her subscribers.
“When I give advice on caring for plants, I very often get messages of thanks. It’s a calm and caring community,” concludes Diana.
Eco-responsibility and savings
But these tips and advice that are transmitted and shared on social networks are also often a reflection of a concern for economy. Maintaining a vegetable garden or an indoor jungle can become very expensive if you get supplies from specialized stores.
Thereby, Lina is sensitive to the preservation of our environment and advocates recycling “The fact of necessarily having a fruit or vegetable in your fridge to germinate has a lot to do with it. We see on Friday a video on ‘how to sow tomatoes’ and on Saturday, while preparing a salad, we can go to the practical case because it is simple and accessible to all. The ‘waste’ is transformed into a playful experience and, has fortiori, when the experiment is conclusive. There is a certain pride in ‘giving life’ to a beautiful houseplant thanks to a core that was going to end up in the trash!”.
It is not Pierre who will say the opposite, he whose videos on TikTok intended for the recycling of food waste useful in the garden are among the most viewed, proof that ecology is part of the success of these accounts.
Satisfaction of doing it yourself or with family
Finally, for Pierre, it is also about the pleasure of sharing an activity with the family, whose ties are sometimes strained due to different schedules and activities. Sowing, planting, harvesting and cooking with your children or partner represent a healthy approach and allow you to “recreate real convivial moments”.
Author of Succeed in your vegetable garden, (Ed. Marabout), this budding gardener likes to think that he brings generations together for moments of sharing. He sometimes receives messages from subscribers who tell him how they went for a walk and took advantage of his advice to practice wild picking.
Lina, for her part, evokes an almost philosophical dimension of the family spirit. “Watching an object as ‘dumb’ as an avocado or a sweet potato grow is extremely satisfying and gives everyone a sense of pride. We come back to know-how and techniques that were a little ‘shunned’ by our parents, we reclaim them and we look with much more benevolence at the garden or the vegetable garden of the grandparent”, explains this landscape engineer designer.
If confinement certainly initiated this passion for gardening, the sequence of events proved that it was not just a consequence of health constraints, but more of the rediscovery of pleasures to share with family, to learn to do it yourself and get back in tune with a healthier, virtuous and seasonal diet. And that’s good, because spring is here!
See also on The HuffPost: Late blight ravages tomatoes, home gardeners upset
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