Kendall Platt – Adventures with Flowers: Mindful Gardening Coach

How to achieve a state of mindfulness and calm.

Mindful gardening is gardening while focusing on the present moment and calmly accepting one’s feelings, thoughts and bodily sensations to achieve a state of mindfulness and calm.

Hi Kendall! I’m so excited that you are here for a chat with me for the Gather and Grow series, I’ve been a long time follower of yours – gardening is my absolute escape and think that so many people could benefit from spending time outdoors with their hands in nature.  

Tell us a bit about who you are and what you do:

I’m Kendall Platt, The Mindful Gardening Coach.  I help women take time out of their busy lives to quieten their minds whilst creating a garden that sets their heart on fire.

What is mindful gardening and why is there a need for it?

Ok definition time, because clarity is Queen!

Mindful gardening is gardening while focusing on the present moment and calmly accepting one’s feelings, thoughts and bodily sensations to achieve a state of mindfulness and calm.

As women and mothers I think it’s safe to say we have a lot on our minds!  We often feel overwhelmed, stressed, anxious and in desperate need of a break.

Mindful gardening enables you to give your brain a break whilst doing something that is still considered ‘productive’. And crucially for us busy women you don’t have to spend all day out there tending to your plants in order to feel refreshed and re-energised.

Research shows that just 20 minutes a day of gardening can improve our wellbeing scores and decrease our stress levels. By incorporating elements of mindfulness into your gardening practice you can decrease the time it takes to have a positive impact to just 5 minutes.

Why do you think mindful gardening helps women specifically and why do you think women repeatedly don’t prioritise time for themselves?

Mindful gardening enables us to get the same mental health and wellbeing benefits from gardening that are widely reported, but in less time, which is perfect for those of us who struggle to even take 5 minutes for ourselves each day.

Society still views women as the nurturers. We have been conditioned to believe that we must always be giving and doing things for others. And if we aren’t doing and giving then we are bad. It is scary for those of us who grew up with the ‘good girl’ narrative ringing in our ears, to do anything other than what everyone else expects of us.

Many of us also grew up in the 80’s and 90’s where there was a real culture (that still exists to some extent) of keep going, keep striving, keep proving yourself otherwise you’re worthless.

I’m rebelling against all that by slowing down in my garden and prioritising myself. Because when I’m well, happy and thriving, everyone around me is too.

What inspired you to become a mindful gardening coach? Is it something that was a result of an event in your life or is it something you have always been passionate about?

Honestly, I was fed up with women thinking they need to do and give themselves into the ground.

I myself was on the edge of burnout in 2014 and it was my garden that saved me.

It allowed me the space to process the feelings I had been burying for YEARS. Feelings of grief, of shame, of loneliness and worthlessness that had come about from various different life events (the death of a close friend, redundancy x2, being bullied by a colleague, maternity discrimination, new motherhood, struggling with undiagnosed ADHD).

Feelings that I had been overworking myself in order to avoid.

Connecting with my garden, allowing my mind to quiet, growing things allowed me to discover who I was after all those tricky life events. It allowed me to grow my strength again, my confidence in myself and feel a little less lonely as I grew my very own planty sanctuary right outside my back door.

What do you really love about what you do?

Seeing a client’s power grow as she discovers her inner lioness by slowing down, cultivating her creativity and growing a space that makes her heart skip a beat as she walks out into it.

What do you believe is the connection between mindfulness and gardening?

Gardening involves repetitive actions which allows your brain to get into the flow state quicker. The flow state is where your brain will begin to calm and you will be able to access many of the benefits of mindful gardening:

Many gardening activities require you to be paying attention to what you are doing, otherwise you might damage your plants, or yourself. This helps you to stay in the present moment so you can notice and accept any thoughts, feelings or sensations that come up for you.

How do you help women integrate mindfulness into their gardening practice? Tell us what resources you have available?

My free checklist ‘Get your garden looking gorgeous in just 5 minutes a day’ incorporates mindful gardening activities into the steps to follow to grow yourself a garden that you adore. You can get it here!

I also run online workshops that teach how to incorporate mindfulness into your gardening activities such as pruning, seed sowing. And also have one that teaches you ‘How to design a garden border to support your wellbeing’.

Workshop info available here.

How do you help women overcome that block of not having enough time to enjoy these things?

I am a huge advocate for little and often when it comes to gardening.  Just 5 minutes a day can make a real difference.  Start with 5 minutes and before long time will be zipping past and you’ll have spent a blissful 20 minutes tending to your plants and doing something that makes you feel a million dollars too.

My Mindful Gardening club members have access to my monthly mindful gardening activities that are either 5, 20 or 60 minutes long.  This removes the tendency to waste time deciding what you are going to do in the garden and just choose an activity from that month’s list and just get on, do it and feel calmer and happier for doing so!

With my 1:1 clients we create a bespoke mindful gardening plan together that they can use year on year to keep the garden looking good in the time they have available and keep themselves feeling balanced and peaceful. Whilst we are working together we create space in their schedule for garden time. My ongoing support and their increasing gardening confidence helps them to create a habit that is good for them and good for their garden.

What are some common challenges that your clients face in maintaining a mindful garden, and how do you help them overcome them?

Feeling overwhelmed.

Either because everything is growing quicker than they can keep up with or because they have a complete blank canvas and they don’t know where to start.

Firstly I encourage them to focus on just one area of the garden to begin with.  Get that looking really good, build up their confidence, celebrate what they’ve created before moving on to another area of the garden.

Within each area we use a step by step approach that is based on the specific dreams they have for their garden and what the garden has to offer them to co-create something that they love in the time they have to grow their garden sanctuary.

Feeling disheartened…

…when their seeds don’t germinate or a plant looks like it’s struggling.

I help them understand the key elements of sowing seeds or growing a garden and help them see where they might be missing skills and knowledge and then support them as they practice and grow their confidence.

Not feeling creative enough.

I share my garden planning framework with them as a jumping off point before encouraging them to think about how they want the garden to make them feel.  I have a dream garden visualisation that I lead them through that helps them to get out of their logical brain and let the creative juices flow.

Is there a particularly rewarding experience you’ve had with a client? How did you help them achieve their goals through gardening?

My client Claire came to me during the pandemic when she was really struggling with anxiety.  She was taking medication to help her manage it but she was still laying awake for hours at night, she had low mood and felt anxious nearly all the time.

Before we started working together she was worried that she wouldn’t allow herself time for her but during our time working together she realised that she deserved that ‘me time’.

She had never tried gardening or mindfulness before but she now describes her garden as her sanctuary.

Her self-worth has increased, she feels more relaxed, happier, she falls asleep quicker at night and she’s more productive at work after her lunch break in the garden. 

In fact her garden and mindful gardening has been such a tonic for her that she has reduced her anti anxiety medication (in line with her doctor’s advice).

I helped her to see where she could fit gardening into her busy life as a working mum to 2. We decided on some key steps and activities to get her garden to where she wanted it to be and to reduce her stress and anxiety levels.

Once she began gardening mindfully her confidence grew quickly and we were able to try more challenging gardening activities that helped her to grow her green space, manage her anxious mind and embed mindful gardening into her self care toolkit.

What does a day off look like for you – how do you decompress from work?

A walk or dinner and a catch up with a friend, a swim, a pilates class, some time in the garden, family movie night, getting creative with my flowers for fun, playing cards with my husband under the grapevine and reading a few pages of my book before bed.

Probably not all in one day, but my brain works best with variety, so I employ a number of different relaxation methods.

What is the biggest struggle you’ve had to overcome in your business and what advice would you give to someone else in this situation?

Lack of belief in myself.  

I couldn’t have just sold t-shirts could I?  I had to choose something a little bit weird!  But that in itself has presented problems.  

I struggle to articulate clearly what I do and that has meant I doubt myself all the time.  It’s only down to my unwavering belief that mindful gardening is the antidote to our increasingly busy lives and busy minds and the need to redress the balance that keeps me picking myself back up and moving forward.

My first piece of advice is to find a community of other small business owners who get it and can pick you up when you’re feeling down about your business, give you advice and ideas and just be there for you so you don’t feel alone. You might have to pay to join an already established one but it will be so worth it.

My second piece of advice is to work with a coach or mentor who specialises in whatever area you are struggling in; mindset, messaging, sales, tech. I know coaches get a bad rep sometimes but a good one is worth their weight in gold.

Why keep struggling with something when you can enlist support to help you? It gets to be easy if you let it.

How do you balance your personal and professional life as a business owner?

I have very strict boundaries around when I work and when I don’t. When I nearly burnt out in 2014 I had zero boundaries.  I said yes to anything anyone wanted me to do even if I didn’t have time or didn’t want to do it.  I would work all day in my day job, most evenings and pretty much every weekend too. It was exhausting and I hated my life.

Now I run one evening masterclass a month and have one evening slot a week to see 1:1 clients. I run mindful Christmas wreath making events on the first weekend in December and the rest of my work is done during school hours 3 days a week.

I take 10 minutes to post to social media on my non-working days and then I’m free to enjoy the rest of my day with my family or friends.

What advice would you give to other female founders just starting out?

Learn how to communicate what you do clearly straight away and then learn how to sell your services. Because if you can’t sell you’re not going to be around for long.

Know that you will doubt yourself every day and sometimes multiple times a day. Founding a business will highlight all your flaws and all your strengths. It really is a rollercoaster and not for the fainthearted. BUT it is so rewarding when you support your clients to get the results they want.

How do you prioritise self-care and mental health as a business owner?

I start each working day in the garden. Even 5 minutes out there allows my mind to quiet, my creativity to grow and my passion to burn bright (no matter how little sleep I’ve had).

What are some of your proudest moments as a female founder?

I actually really struggle to celebrate my successes. I have that narrative running through my mind that I always need to be achieving more. Plus I did very well at school and was bullied for it so I think there’s a reluctance there to show I’m proud incase I’m painting a target on my back again.

But….takes a deep breath….


Get your garden looking gorgeous in just
5 minutes a day

Are you fed up with your garden looking a mess? You want to use gardening as a form of self care but you struggle to know what to do in your garden to make it look great.

It’s making you feel more overwhelmed and stressed, not less!

The simple activities in this checklist are designed to help you feel calmer and happier whilst getting your garden looking gorgeous one step at a time.

I’d love to know, what’s your favourite part of what you do?

The first call with a client. I love assessing the lay of the land when it comes to their garden, what it has to offer them and what they (in terms of time and knowledge) have to offer their garden.

My ADHD brain is shit hot at troubleshooting and problem solving, probably why I was such a good forensic scientist. So I get ridiculously excited as it starts to download all the ways we can make their dream garden and mindful gardening practice come to fruition.

What can we expect from Adventures with Flowers in the near future?

Continuing to support women to create gorgeous gardens and cultivate a healthy mind through my 1:1 work and The Mindful Gardening Club and a plethora of online mindful gardening and floristry workshops for those who want to dip their toe into the world of mindful gardening and floristry.

As we come to the close of our catch up let’s wrap up with some quick fire questions!


Favourite colour:


Favourite flower:


Favourite season:


A wellbeing tip to share with other entrepreneurs:

Set an alarm on your phone for 4pm/ 5pm (whatever time you want to finish work) and call it the thing you are going to do to celebrate your day’s work.

Mine simply says ‘Garden’. So my alarm goes off and I close the laptop and head out into my garden for just 10 minutes before I go and get the girls from school/ childminder.

It signifies to my brain that the working day is done, helps me switch into wind down/ mum mode and stops me overworking.


3 things you would share with your younger self:


allows my mind to quiet, my creativity to grow and my passion to burn bright

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