Happy National Allotment Week! We thought it was only right to celebrate by letting you know the benefits of having an allotment in the workplace. There are lots of resources out there to help you start your own allotment. From numerous book guides,  through to the hit BBC show Gardener’s World, there are even handy YouTube videos, meaning getting started has never been easier! Gardening is a hobby that has so many benefits such as healthy eating and getting everyone active.  It’s also a stepping stone for implementing sustainability practices. Grab your shovel and let’s talk you through five reasons why you should have an allotment in your workplace…

It’s a great form of exercise

Affinity for Business National Allotment Week: 5 Reasons why your business should have an allotment

Did you know that the average weighing person can burn around 324 calories just by gardening for one hour? Whether that be from lifting and cleaning plant pots, sowing seeds or giving your crops a drink of water in your lunch break. Squeezing in that extra activity is perfect for those with a low-intensity job such as working in an office or being cooped up in a school classroom. Exercise from gardening can have amazing pay-off in the long run as it can prevent brittle bones, heart disease and touching on our next point, it can improve your mental health too.

Gardening can improve your mental health 

Affinity for Business National Allotment Week: 5 Reasons why your business should have an allotment

Work can sometimes be a stressful place, whether you’re feeling tense from the morning commute, work in a fast-paced restaurant kitchen or have a day full of intense meetings. Taking thirty minutes from your day to refresh your mind and digest your thoughts in an allotment has lots of stress relieving benefits. Just being out in the sun for around 20 minutes can increase your serotonin levels. These are hormones in the body that regulate your mood. Starting an allotment can make your employees feel happy and content – happy mind, happy workplace!

Starting an allotment helps the environment

Affinity for Business National Allotment Week: 5 Reasons why your business should have an allotment

When growing your own fruit and veg in the workplace allotment, it’s important to be sustainable in the process. A few of our top tips include reusing rainwater by collecting it in a water butt (a tank that’s connected to your pipes and stores rainwater) and recycling it to replenish your fruit and veg. The most sustainable way to water crops is to use a watering can and water your plants at the root, helping water get to where it’s most needed. Timing is also key to being water efficient, watering your allotment at a time that’s cool will reduce the chances of evaporation. A good time to water your allotment is in the early morning or in the afternoon before leaving work.

There are sustainable ways to plant fruit and vegetables too. No need to buy any seeds, you can extend the life of your used veg by re-growing your kitchen scraps! There are lots of different types of healthy foods that you can repurpose such as lettuce, avocado, and potatoes. In fact, here are 25 different types of crops that you could grow in your allotment by using this recycling method. Plus, you won’t be breaking your business’s budget on plant seeds.

Healthy eating, healthy lifestyle

Affinity for Business National Allotment Week: 5 Reasons why your business should have an allotment

Healthy eating is said to encourage higher levels of productivity in the workplace and generally adds to a healthier way of living, they do say an apple a day keeps the doctor away! Encouraging your employees to eat healthier is easy, just place the fruit and veg grown from your allotment in a communal area of the workplace for people to take as a healthy snack, add to their lunch or take home and use as ingredients for their dinner.

Getting social

An allotment is a great team activity, it encourages effective communication and creates a social environment for colleagues to bond. During warmer months, the allotment is a great spot to have lunch with others, sit in the sun and soak in the calming surroundings.

We hope you found our five reasons for having an allotment helpful! For more advice, here are our top water saving tips for gardeners this summer to help you become more sustainable and water efficient whilst maintaining your allotment.

Have you already got an allotment in your workplace? Tweet us a photo @Affinityfb, we would love to see them!