The Best New Year Resolutions to Make

New Year Resolutions ListNew year resolutions are busy being broken all around the country. I’ve done a quick roundup of friends (that didn’t take long); family (I’ll be honest, they weren’t playing); and the internet (a constant friend and part of the family) and found that, as I expected, losing weight, getting fit, saving cash and generally being really nice to everyone are top of the resolution charts.

And so, in time honoured fashion, I will now publicly share my own resolutions. If any of you catch me breaking any of them you can shame me where you wish. I mean Facebook, Twitter and all that kind of stuff we do here. Equally, I will keep you all abreast of my progress in the Gardener’s Diary (which you all read anyway so I’ve no need to mention it really).

So, here we go:

Do more gardening.

That’s it.

lady gardeningWhether it’s sorting the lawn, tending the veg patch, hopefully knocking an allotment into shape (still not confirmed but hassling the parish council clerk to sort it!) and then the beds, borders, containers, pots, troughs and the greenhouse - plenty of activity in there. Of course, the hedges, the fruit trees and the hard surfaces all need maintenance and effort. Tasks will include the downright heavyweight stuff like raking, mowing, digging, climbing and forking. Less intense activity involves seed sowing, potting up the plug plants, deadheading and gentle watering in the greenhouse.

Therefore, if you plan to lose weight and get fit then can I suggest ramping up the gardening activity a bit?  It saves you going on all those faddy diets of ‘I only eat protein’, ‘I only eat cucumbers’, ‘A venison sausage diet is the best’ or an unnatural sounding ‘2 on 5 off’ or ‘6 off and 1 on’ type of eating arrangements. Forget all that - just do some gardening. Maybe substituting a banana for that handful of Jammie Dodgers when having a break after some sweaty digging will help.

piggy bankIf saving cash is your resolution can I suggest some more gardening? First of all, you will save £££s by not having to join a gym. Secondly, growing plants from seed is cheap, bedding plug plants are better value than ready-made plants and a quality shrub or herbaceous will quickly grow up, fill out and make your garden look terrific.

Plus, all that garden activity is so relaxing and pleasing that you will be in the right frame of mind to be nice to everyone. Honestly, it can be that easy. Obviously, I’m biased but it is a fact that gardening is the best pastime anyone can have.

pretty back gardenTherefore, when asked how your resolutions are going simply stand aside and - with a sweeping gesture of your arm and hand – say, ‘I think you’ll find that (pointing at your garden) is my resolution.’ And let them jog on in their garish running shoes, expensive training watch ticking away on their way to the mental ‘wall’ of the long distance runner.

squirrel eating a jammie dodgerPS: Obviously the Jammie Dodger substitution programme is the hardest of the lot to achieve. Maybe reduce from six to two biscuits instead of replacing them all for a banana. I’ll leave that to your own personal programme.