Mental health and spring flowers

Has your mental health been suffering thanks to two years of regularly-changing restrictions during the pandemic as well as the usual “winter blues”?

With many spring flowers coming into bloom early this year a little time spent enjoying the profusion of snowdrops, daffodils and other delights could provide the boost your spirits need.

Given how quickly the weather can change it may not be time for a long ramble in the country but there are plenty of places you can visit to get some fresh air that are close enough to shelter should you need it.

We have some suggestions.

Christchurch Park, Ipswich.  This is one of many parks in Ipswich and has the advantage of offering not only opportunities for a gentle stroll but also the delights of the various exhibits in Christchurch Mansion. The Arboretum, too, offers the chance to be among greenery while safely sheltered from the weather. Entry is free.

The Abbey Gardens, Bury St Edmunds. Set in 14 acres the gardens are on the site of the former Benedictine Abbey. The gardens are renowned for colourful and attractive displays and include a wildflower labyrinth, a herb garden, a rose garden and a sensory garden among others. Entry is free and the gardens are open seven days a week.

Flatford Mill, East Bergholt. Maintained by the National Trust ands famous for scenes painted by Suffolk artists John Constable the sound of running water is always a balm to the soul. While the buildings are not open this time of year, parking is free and there is a walking trail from Flatford to Dedham if you are feeling a bit more energetic.

Of course, there is no shortage of beautiful countryside in which to walk if you are feeling a bit more energetic, such as Rendlesham Forest near Woodbridge.

What all these places have in common is their undeniable ability to refresh and restore your soul and do wonders for your mental health.