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Are Community Gardening and Horticultural Interventions Beneficial for Psychosocial Well-Being? A Meta-Analysis

1
Department of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences, University of Bari Aldo Moro, 70126 Bari, Italy
2
Department of Education, Roma Tre University, 00185 Rome, Italy
3
Department of Geography, The University of Hong Kong, Centennial Campus, Hong Kong, China
4
Department of Human Science, European University of Rome, 00163 Rome, Italy
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17(10), 3584; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph17103584
Received: 4 April 2020 / Revised: 11 May 2020 / Accepted: 16 May 2020 / Published: 20 May 2020
(This article belongs to the Section Mental Health)
Recent literature has revealed the positive effect of gardening on human health; however, empirical evidence on the effects of gardening-based programs on psychosocial well-being is scant. This meta-analysis aims to examine the scientific literature on the effect of community gardening or horticultural interventions on a variety of outcomes related to psychosocial well-being, such as social cohesion, networking, social support, and trust. From 383 bibliographic records retrieved (from 1975 to 2019), seven studies with a total of 22 effect sizes were selected on the basis of the Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses (PRISMA) guidelines. Meta-analytic findings on 11 comparisons indicate a positive and moderate effect of horticultural or gardening interventions on psychosocial well-being. Moderation analysis shows a greater effect size in individualistic than collectivistic cultures. A greater effect size was also observed in studies involving community gardening compared to horticultural intervention. Nevertheless, an effect of publication bias and study heterogeneity has been detected. Despite the presence of a large number of qualitative studies on the effect of horticulture/gardening on psychosocial well-being, quantitative studies are lacking. There is a strong need to advance into further high-quality studies on this research topic given that gardening has promising applied implications for human health, the community, and sustainable city management. View Full-Text
Keywords: meta-analysis; horticulture; well-being; social support; neighborhood cohesion; human health–environment interaction; psychosocial health meta-analysis; horticulture; well-being; social support; neighborhood cohesion; human health–environment interaction; psychosocial health
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MDPI and ACS Style

Spano, G.; D’Este, M.; Giannico, V.; Carrus, G.; Elia, M.; Lafortezza, R.; Panno, A.; Sanesi, G. Are Community Gardening and Horticultural Interventions Beneficial for Psychosocial Well-Being? A Meta-Analysis. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17, 3584. https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph17103584

AMA Style

Spano G, D’Este M, Giannico V, Carrus G, Elia M, Lafortezza R, Panno A, Sanesi G. Are Community Gardening and Horticultural Interventions Beneficial for Psychosocial Well-Being? A Meta-Analysis. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health. 2020; 17(10):3584. https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph17103584

Chicago/Turabian Style

Spano, Giuseppina; D’Este, Marina; Giannico, Vincenzo; Carrus, Giuseppe; Elia, Mario; Lafortezza, Raffaele; Panno, Angelo; Sanesi, Giovanni. 2020. "Are Community Gardening and Horticultural Interventions Beneficial for Psychosocial Well-Being? A Meta-Analysis" Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 17, no. 10: 3584. https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph17103584

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