COVID Impact On Gardening

2020 was a very difficult year, no doubt about it. But it is good to try and look for the positives in any situation. One positive of COVID is that it has dramatically increased the amount of people that are interested in gardening! It turns out that working from home and staring out the window all day, encourages people to put more thought into gardening & landscaping. There is also an increase in people hoping to be more self-sufficient and grow their own food in case there are shortages at the grocery store, and to make less trips out to the public and avoid crowds as much as possible. Too bad there isn’t a way to grow your own toilet paper!

Gardening Interest Over Time

Numbers represent search interest relative to the highest point on the chart for the given region and time. A value of 100 is the peak popularity for the term. A value of 50 means that the term is half as popular. A score of 0 means there was not enough data for this term.

Gardening Searches in Google Previous 5 Years


As you can see in the chart above, gardening related searches reached over 20M searches in 2020, which is much higher than the previous years of 8.7M searches in 2019, 8.3M in 2018 and 6.7M in 2017. Some of this growth can be attributed to population growth and growth of internet users over time. But that is around 1-2% growth each year for internet usage and less than 1% population growth over the past 5 years according to Pew Research Center and

Certain gardening searches have grown more year over year than others due to COVID. Here is a look at some of the most popular gardening searches online 2019 compared to 2020:

Keyword Total 2019 (Jan-Oct) Total 2020 (Jan-Oct) Var % Var #
gardening 1,720,000 2,597,000 51% 877,000
perennials 1,543,000 1,992,500 29% 449,500
raised garden bed 969,500 2,628,500 171% 1,659,000
wheelbarrows 1,116,500 1,617,500 45% 501,000
plant nursery near me 1,111,000 2,009,500 81% 898,500
hydroponics 839,000 1,196,000 43% 357,000
bushes 831,500 1,100,000 32% 268,500
planters 730,000 1,346,000 84% 616,000
garden center 873,100 1,530,500 75% 657,400
annuals 648,500 615,500 -5% -33,000
garden gnome 385,900 608,500 58% 222,600
greenhouses near me 482,500 904,000 87% 421,500
garden tool 389,200 711,200 83% 322,000
tomato plant 289,300 782,300 170% 493,000
zones for planting 342,700 490,500 43% 147,800
potting soil 306,100 601,000 96% 294,900
outdoor plants 279,500 523,100 87% 243,600
plants for sale 135,400 277,300 105% 141,900

A few things that stand out from this data the most. Searches that would be used for growing your own food grew at a much larger rate than the trend. These include searches like "raised garden beds", "tomato plants", and "potting soil". One striking stat from this data is annuals. Searches for those plants actually decreased YoY. This is likely due to the fact that annuals are most popular in early spring, when COVID was just getting started and people didn't know what to expect. At that time, having pretty annuals was clearly a lower priority than ensuring your families were safe. We anticipate that demand to climb back to 2019 levels in the spring of 2021.

Gardening Trends After COVID in 2021 & Beyond

There were many people who tried out gardening for the first time ever in 2020. Most definitely a lot of those attempts failed, as gardening is all about trial and error. The good thing is that it appears that most new gardeners have not given up and plan to continue and build on what they did during quarantine! Several large well-known plant brands & growers are predicting a 50%-100% growth in 2021 OVER what happened in 2020. So that is fantastic news!

There are so many benefits of gardening, and the more people that experience those benefits the better off the world will be. Many studies, including one from Princeton University have listed several benefits of gardening, which were needed in 2020 more than any other year to help with emotional wellness.

  • Gardening supports high emotional well-being
  • Increases produce consumption, especially in low income households
  • Encourages physical activity
  • Social distancing is easy when gardening


And gardening after-all is a very addicting hobby to have!


Google Keyword Planner

Google Trends

Princeton University, Civil & Environmental Engineering, 41 Olden St., Princeton, NJ 08544, United States, Home Gardening Promotes Mental Health During COVID-19, Katell Ane,, Internet/Broadband Fact Sheet

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 Author Chris Link - Published 11-25-2020