Gardening Insights From Edwards Greenhouse

Myers-Briggs Meets Gardening

In this article I thought it would be fun to think about how different personality characteristics, outlined by information about the Myers-Briggs Indicator ® personality inventory, (click here) to see what it might look like through gardening activities. Gardening holds so many interests and ways of working, that these ideas only scratch the surface!

  1. Which is your most natural energy orientation? Every person has two faces. Are you more Extroverted or Introverted?

Extroverts are directed towards the outer world of activities, excitements, people, and things. They may most enjoy gardening as a social activity, and can flourish interacting with the public while gardening.

Introverts, who are directed inward to the inner world of thoughts, interests, ideas, and imagination, may enjoy gardening by themselves, thinking/reflecting first before acting.

  1. Which way of perceiving or understanding is most “automatic” or natural? Do you favor a more Sensing or Intuitive approach to the world?

People with strong Sensing characteristics notice sensory information in the present, are reality based, and connect past events to the present. They may do well with the very practical nature of gardening such as planting, pruning, weeding and watering. (These activities aren’t exclusive to this personality type, however!)

Intuitive people may focus on overall patterns of information, and on possibilities for the future. An Intuitive gardener may enjoy imagine new ways of going about gardening. They may be more comfortable with the ambiguity of trying new gardening ideas such as ideas to protect baby plants from frost, or planting so as to make weeding easier.

  1. Which way of forming judgments and making choices is most natural? Everyone has Thinking or Feeling ways of forming conclusions, but with a natural bias toward one or the other.

People with a Thinking emphasis can be self-starters because they naturally notice tasks to be accomplished, and can be objective problem-solvers. They may enjoy searching for facts to combat tomato plant diseases, for example.

People with a Feeling emphasis are sensitive to people’s needs and reactions, and may excel at working with people to help gardeners’ patience and harmony.

  1. What is your “action orientation” towards the outside world? All people use Judging or Perceiving ways of thinking and managing life, with the dominant way taking the lead in the relationship with the outside world, while the other governs the inner world.

People with a Judging emphasis approach the outside world with a plan. They may enjoy pre-planning a garden layout, and be driven by planting, caring for, and harvesting time lines.

People with strong Perceiving characteristics like to multitask, have variety, and mix work and play. They may break into song, or plan on-the-go as they work on organizing a garden while they weed.

Each person has differing degrees of Extroversion, Introversion, Sensing, Intuitive, Thinking, Feeling, Judging and Perceiving characteristics. With your own unique combination, there is something in gardening for you!

Edward’s staff members are happy to provide support and advice throughout the gardening experience to strengthen each gardener’s skills at all experience levels.


Gretchen Weitemier

Occupational Therapist

Herbs and Veggies Worker