Autumn wellbeing calendar
Enjoy all that gardening and nature have to offer for health and wellbeing this autumn with help from our calendar of activities.

We have created a four-week journey of wellbeing activities. Find simple but effective ways to boost your physical and mental health through gardening or time in nature.

You can look forward to a mix of practical, passive, creative, gardening, nature, indoor and outdoor activities. There is something for everyone’s wellbeing and health this autumn.

Autumn wellbeing calendar A4 1
Our autumn wellbeing calendar of activities

It’s simple to take part! You can either:

  • Download the calendar to print it out
  • If you're using a phone or tablet, tap and hold the image below to save it to your device
  • If you're on a desktop or laptop, right-click to save
  • Click here to listen to the read-aloud version

Our activities are spread daily over four weeks. Find a variety of ideas to make you feel good, whatever your age, state of health or abilities. You can take part whether you have a garden, patio, balcony or a windowsill.

Many of the activities are simple and can be done without materials or prep. If you would like some extra support, below we share some tips and ideas for each day, including links to helpful guides.


Do you need more urgent support for your mental health and wellbeing? Please access the NHS mental health resources or contact your GP.

A hedgehog in a garden
A hedgehog in a garden
  1. Share a photo of a tree with changing colours. You could show it to friends, family members or neighbours. You can also share with us by sending to info@thrive.org.uk
  2. Reflect on this year's spring and summer. What did you enjoy most in nature? Which was your favourite month and why? Did you grow anything new this year? You could write down your thoughts, or just spend some quiet time thinking about it.
  3. Make a hedgehog house. David Domoney has a helpful guide on his website.
  4. Search for sweet chestnuts and conkers. Sweet chestnuts are found on sweet chestnut trees and conkers on horse chestnut trees. You could encourage a friend of family member to do this activity with you!
  5. Go for a walk and notice changing colours. This could be in your own garden, a park, open garden, or simply around the local area. This could be another good activity to do together with someone else.
  6. Have an autumn treasure hunt. Create a list of possible autumn sights and head out with others to see who can find the most. Find ideas for what to include here.
  7. Sow sweet peas. Mid to late autumn is a great time to sow sweet pea seeds, with the anticipation of beautiful flowers the following year. In our guide, we show you how to sow sweet pea seeds using toilet roll tubes.
Pink tulips in bloom
Pink tulips in bloom
  1. Play wildlife bingo. Head into your garden or other outdoor space with a friend or family member and get nature spotting. We have printable sheets you can use here.
  2. Collect seeds to store. Saving seeds from your plants is a great way to get more plants for free! In our article on saving seeds we have advice for a number of food and flowering plants.
  3. Go for a walk and notice autumn smells. Our sense of smell isn't always the one we pay closest attention to. Have a good sniff as you head outside. What smells are strongest? Which do you find most and least enjoyable?
  4. Plant tulips in pots or borders. Mid to late autumn is the ideal time to plant tulip bulbs. You will be richly rewarded with colour next spring! For extra advice, read our guide to planting tulips.
  5. Gather leaves to make leaf mould. Gather the leaves from your garden into neat piles, ready to create leaf mould.
  6. Create leaf mould. Use the leaves you gathered to start your leaf mould. You could shred them, or place into bags. Our guide to creating leaf mould has more advice to help you.
  7. Build a bug hotel. A home for insects can be a simple stack of logs, or something more complex if you have time and energy. Read our guide to making a simple bug hotel for inspiration.
Broad beans growing in toilet rolls
Broad beans growing in toilet rolls
  1. Go for a walk and notice autumn sounds. For today's sensory walk, let your ears be your guide. What sounds in nature are most prominent? If there are any birds singing, can you identify the bird species from its song?
  2. Make some 'ephemeral' nature art. Ephemeral means temporary, or lasting a short period of time. Artistic piles of leaves in the garden are a great example. See an example in our guide to creating leaf art.
  3. Go stargazing. An easy way to do this is stand in your own garden once the stars are out and look up. Try to find an evening where there is not too much cloud cover. Which constellations can you recognise? You could try an astronomy app on your phone, like Stellarium or Star Walk, if you wanted to learn more.
  4. Kick through some autumn leaves. Let your inner child lead the way! Enjoy the sound and sight as your feet woosh through piles of leaves.
  5. Press leaves or flowers. The flowers from your outdoor space can be a great source of art. We have a step by step guide to flower pressing if you would like extra tips.
  6. Sow broad beans. Late autumn is a good time to sow broad beans. You can use toilet rolls to do this if you have them. Follow our guide for more advice.
  7. Make a bird feeder. Help our feathered friends as days get shorter. You could try a homemade apple feeder or recycle a plastic milk or juice bottle.
Autumnal bunch of flowers
An autumnal bunch of flowers
  1. Collect leaves for leaf art. This time, those lovely autumn leaves are coming indoors. Gather a small amount in a bag. Bring inside and spread the collection on kitchen towel to dry out. You could also collect some twigs or other items at the same time. You will be making use of it all in a couple of days!
  2. Make an autumn flower arrangement. Use whatever is growing to create a display for your home - or to gift. Our guide to autumn flower arranging has extra tips.
  3. Create your leaf art. It's time to make use of your leaf collection. You could create a collage, leaf kebabs or create a leaf animal. Read our guide to leaf art for ideas.
  4. Buy or plant something to live in your home. Indoor plants are especially welcome as days get shorter. You may enjoy our articles on caring for houseplants or bulbs that flower indoors in winter.
  5. Grow from hardwood cuttings. Learning to propagate is an exciting skill and another way to get more plants for free! Find advice in our guide to taking hardwood cuttings.
  6. Make a festive wreath. Build excitement for the festive period by making your own wreath. Follow our step by step guide.
  7. Take another photo of the tree from day one. How has it changed since you started doing these activities?

Share your experience

We'd love to hear if the activities are helping you and which ones make you feel good. Let us know how you're getting on by tagging Thrive on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram or emailing us at info@thrive.org.uk.

Do you have a family member or friend who might enjoy this wellbeing calendar? Please do share this page with them and help spread the wellbeing benefits further.

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