Forum home The potting shed

If only I could get paid for doing what I love!

'scuse the pun image but I really feel like I'm being sapped of all my energy: a week off work has made me realise how my stressful job working with disengaged young people is affecting my health. The only thing that alleviates the feeling of dread on a Sunday night is the fact that I get paid enough money to pay for holidays to escape: not a good way to live life. In between holidays and time spent with family my garden is the only time I feel calm, relaxed and totally 'me' is when I'm pottering around in my little 6M x 6M garden. It became my sanctuary when I was going through bereavement, it's the place where I sit and write in my diary, it's the place where I feel a sense of achievement but its also taught me how to deal with setbacks not to mention the fact that I love getting my hands dirty! It gives me the chance to be creative and I've often found myself looking at the clock thinking: how can 6 hours have passed when I only came outside to do a bit of weeding? Why oh why can't I get paid for doing this in someone else's garden? Not only could I make someone else's garden neat tidy and weedfree but I'd also be on hand for a chat and I'd throw in a cake or two made from their produce image That all seems too much like a dream but there must be something out there: some other job/career that could combine my love of gardening with my desire to help others... What do you lot think???? 



  • Busy-LizzieBusy-Lizzie Posts: 23,772

    How possible would it be to do a training course in gardening and take it from there? People would be more likely to employ you if you had a diploma under your belt.

    Dordogne and Norfolk. Clay in Dordogne, sandy in Norfolk.
  • punkdocpunkdoc Posts: 14,929

    Your story sounds very similar to mine. I eventually became very ill, and after a number of years was forced to stop working. Unfortunately, although much better, I am still not cured.

    Be careful with your health.

    How can you lie there and think of England
    When you don't even know who's in the team

    S.Yorkshire/Derbyshire border
  • JengilJengil Posts: 35

    I am a mother of 3 who after 8 years off work dreamed of working as a gardener. I spent 2 years whilst my youngest was at pre school studying RHS level 2 at home, and volunteering once a week at a large garden in Suffolk. I have now started a WRAG (work and retrain as a gardener) scheme, where I do 15 hours practical training a week for a year in a garden, with a small training allowance. I have also been offered a part time job in the garden where I volunteer! I know it sounds corny but I feel I am living my dream! My advice is get as much experience as possible. The WRAG scheme is brilliant and worth considering, as you don't always need a qualification to start and can study whilst training. It is run by WFGA (women's farm and garden association) and is open to men and women. Good luck!

  • SparklesJDSparklesJD Posts: 344

    Is it feasible to do a gardening project with your YP? Transforming a derelict plot into a community garden or something? Gardening is very therapeutic - there's lots of stuff about it online. 

    It's tough working in a job that you no longer love (I assume that when you went into it, you enjoyed it), but it's never too late for a change!

  • PalustrisPalustris Posts: 4,297

    I thought that way before they told me to retire or be dead in  a year. So we bought a house with a large piece of land intending to open a nursery. Believe me the stress levels went through the roof, trying to get it started.

    If you are the sort of conscientious type of person (and you sound to be) any job where you need to reach your own set standard is going to be stressful and gardening for other s is no different.

    Don't know what to suggest though, except hope that you find some relief from the anxiety. I did, I gave up doing anything, but that is not an option for most people.

  • Hostafan1Hostafan1 Posts: 34,854

    luvmegarden.  I have no idea of your skills level, so forgive me. 

    If you're good enough , you'll find work out there.

    If your knowledge is more limited, maybe you could get a job as an " undergardener" where you could work alongside a more knowledgeable person and gain from that knowledge.

    Along with the many schemes and suggestions mentioned above, maybe do a bit of both, a part time job using the skills you have and gardening the rest of the time?

    I wish you every success. I became a full time gardener at 24 when I was working as a garden centre manager with B&Q. They offered me a store manager's job and at first I was thrilled, then realised it just wasn't what I wanted to be doing. 

    I made a decent living (not rich ) went back to college part time and studied to become a garden designer . 5 years ago we moved to Devon and I now work part time for Waitrose  2 days a week and spend the rest of my time in my own garden ( my sanctuary )

    Keep us informed  and good luck.

  • LynLyn Posts: 23,190

    I think it's so sad that people are coming out of these jobs where they are helping our young people, I know two school teachers that are leaving this week. 


    Gardening on the wild, windy west side of Dartmoor. 

  • [Deleted User][Deleted User] Posts: 3,277
    The user and all related content has been deleted.
Sign In or Register to comment.