Ceciley Stewart's garden hobby has not only transformed her outdoor area, it has also created a positive change from within.
The Bundaberg woman said gardening had become her new healthy addiction as she made the decision to quit smoking and focus on better habits for her mental health.
“I really love every aspect of gardening from digging in the dirt, growing living plants, that helps me feel alive inside,” Ceciley said.
“Gardening is my therapy from a stressful day or just needing to keep my mind at peace.”
Ceciley said gardening wasn’t always a focus for her but once she got involved, she put 110% into growing her plants.
“Over the years I didn’t really know much about plants, bought a few here and there,” she said.
“I do however put in 110% into any task I take on so as the plant numbers increase, so did the gardening books.”
As an avid gardener, Ceciley said her garden had faced a lot of change over the years due to expanding her knowledge.
“Plants moved, holes dug, plants died, however I had a lifestyle change too which included giving up smoking, healthier eating choices and keeping active, then the new healthy addiction started gardening,” she said.
“Learning everything I could about plants because gardening requires the utmost dedication.
“It takes patience, regularly watering, soil fertility, the temperature, humidity, fertilisers etc.”
Ceciley said getting her garden to where it was now was no easy feat and learning to work with the terrain brought many lessons.
“It’s very hard ground, 30cm down, then clay,” she said.
“I have had to build some areas up especially in the new native garden area (Wollondilly Garden) but with that came learning about composting and creating layers of organic matter to help improve the soil.”
The positive change in lifestyle and love for gardening has been and will continue to be a rewarding experience for Ceciley.
“I love, love being in my garden, exploring and experiencing beauty and the magic scientific process all around me,” she said.
Last week's garden: Lorraine Keen to keep her garden green