National Minority Mental Health Month: What You Need To Know

As mentioned in past blogs, May is National Mental Health Month, but did you know July is National Minority Mental Health Month? You may wonder why the United States has two months of the year dedicated to mental health. 

Well, to start, mental health is one of the most important and widely spread issues that people deal with all over the world, no matter their age, race, or religious belief. Furthermore, almost all people will experience a mental health struggle at some point or another in their life. But finally, mental health is often disregarded or not properly treated in minority individuals, so this is why it is important to spread awareness on that front, so everyone can get the help and support they need to succeed. 

At Gardenuity, we believe in bringing gardening and garden experiences to everyone and creating the most accessible experience possible. This is why we highlight and lift up minority mental health today and every day.

What Is National Minority Mental Health Month?

National Minority Mental Health Month was established by the U.S. Congress in 2008 with the goal of addressing mental health disparities and raising awareness about the unique challenges faced by minority populations in accessing mental health services. 

The purpose of this month-long observance is to promote education, advocacy, and awareness about mental health issues specifically affecting minority communities, including racial and ethnic minorities, LGBTQ+ individuals, and other marginalized groups. It aims to shed light on the disparities in mental health outcomes experienced by these communities, such as lower rates of access to mental health services, higher levels of stigma, and difficulties in receiving culturally competent care. 

Barriers to care, including language barriers, cultural stigma, lack of health insurance or financial resources, limited availability of culturally competent mental health professionals, and systemic inequities, further contribute to these disparities. National Minority Mental Health Month is a platform to address these issues, encourage conversations, and work towards eliminating mental health disparities in these minority communities.

Minority Mental Health + Fruitful Commons

At Gardenuity, we put our money where our mouth is, which is why we teamed up with Fruitful Commons, Kimbal Musk, Bonnie Plants, Big Green, the University of Texas School of Nursing, and the Texas Master Gardeners to put on a community day of gardening at St. John’s in Austin, Texas. Together with these organizations, we distributed three hundred Gardenuity herb gardens and got our hands deep in the soil with neighbors and friends.

Minority populations deserve the same gardening accessibility and nutrition that any other community can receive. This is the mission of Fruitful Commons – to “support neighborhood leaders and organizations to grow food, strengthen communities, and foster stewardship of the natural commons.” 

To learn more about what Fruitful Commons is doing for the Austin community, check out

Gardening has been widely recognized as beneficial for mental health for several reasons. Here are some of the key reasons why gardening can positively impact mental well-being:

Stress reduction: Gardening provides an opportunity to connect with nature, which has a calming effect on the mind. The act of gardening, such as planting, watering, and tending to plants, can help reduce stress and promote relaxation. It allows individuals to take a break from the pressures of daily life and focus on nurturing living things.

Physical activity and exercise: Engaging in gardening activities involves physical movement, such as digging, planting, weeding, and pruning. Regular physical activity releases endorphins, which are natural mood boosters and can help alleviate symptoms of depression and anxiety.

Mindfulness and presence: Gardening encourages mindfulness by promoting a focus on the present moment. It involves paying attention to the sensory experiences of gardening, such as the smell of flowers, the texture of soil, or the sound of birds. This mindful engagement with nature can help reduce rumination and improve overall mental well-being.

Sense of achievement and purpose: Planting seeds, nurturing plants, and seeing them grow and thrive can provide a sense of accomplishment and purpose. It offers a tangible outcome that can boost self-esteem and foster a positive mindset.

Connection and social interaction: Gardening can be a social activity, providing opportunities for connecting with others who share a passion for gardening. Engaging in gardening communities, joining gardening clubs, or participating in community gardens can help foster a sense of belonging and provide social support, which is important for mental health.

Exposure to natural environments: Spending time outdoors and being exposed to natural environments has been linked to improved mental well-being. Fresh air, sunlight, and the beauty of nature can have a positive impact on mood, reduce symptoms of depression, and increase feelings of vitality.

Therapeutic benefits: Gardening is often used as a therapeutic intervention in horticultural therapy, a practice that utilizes gardening and plant-related activities to improve mental health. It has been found to be effective in various settings, such as hospitals, rehabilitation centers, and community programs, for individuals with conditions like anxiety, depression, and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).

Gardenuity makes gardens and gardening experiences accessible to everyone- our outdoor gardens are mobile, come with fully rooted plants, and an invitation to the Gardenuity Grow Pro community- making the experience seamless and fun. Some of our favorite gardens are the Gratitude Garden, Herb Garden, and Taco Topping Garden.

Research also shows the mental health benefits of having a garden on your desktop.

Stress reduction: Research suggests that having plants in indoor environments can help reduce stress levels. Plants provide a calming effect, making the space feel more serene and natural. The presence of greenery can help create a more soothing atmosphere and promote relaxation, which can be especially beneficial in a busy or demanding work environment.

Improved air quality: Plants can act as natural air purifiers by absorbing carbon dioxide and releasing oxygen. They can also help remove toxins from the air, such as volatile organic compounds (VOCs), which are commonly found in indoor environments. Cleaner air can contribute to better overall well-being and cognitive function.

Increased productivity and focus: Studies have shown that having plants in the workspace can enhance productivity and concentration. The presence of greenery can help improve attention span and reduce mental fatigue, leading to better task performance. This can be particularly useful during long work hours or when engaging in demanding cognitive tasks.

Enhanced mood and well-being: Being in the presence of plants and nature is known to have a positive impact on mood and well-being. Research has indicated that interactions with plants can reduce feelings of anxiety, depression, and fatigue. The visual appeal of plants and their association with the natural world can uplift mood, create a sense of tranquility, and improve overall emotional state.

Connection with nature: Having a plant on your desk allows you to connect with nature, even if you’re indoors or in an urban environment. This connection can help counteract the stress and disconnection often experienced in indoor or artificial settings. It provides a reminder of the beauty and vitality of the natural world and can foster a sense of harmony and groundedness.

Nurturing and responsibility: Taking care of a plant gives you a sense of responsibility and nurturance. The act of watering, pruning, and tending to a plant can provide a sense of purpose and accomplishment. This can contribute to feelings of self-worth and fulfillment.

The Gardenuity Desktop Gardens are the perfect way to bring mindful moments into your day, letting a small piece of nature nurture you.