Owners' Blog

Senior Care Fun: National Garden Month

By Greg and Hilary Eldridge

Senior Care in Woodstock GA

Senior Care in Woodstock GAApril is National Garden Month. This is the perfect opportunity for you and your aging parent to integrate the fun and benefits of gardening into your usual senior care journey with her. Gardening is an activity that is accessible even to seniors who are dealing with physical or cognitive limitations. As long as you take the time to carefully plan your gardening experiences and modify them as needed, you can ensure that your parent enjoys and benefits from them. These activities are also a great way for your loved one to connect with her senior health care services provider. Having something to do together on a regular basis is a way to encourage a closer relationship and provides opportunity for conversation and making memories.

Use these tips to help you get started on a safe and healthy gardening journey during National Garden Month:

Plan your garden. Take the time to plan the type of garden that is right for your elderly loved one. Those who have large lawns and active lifestyles may enjoy creating a more extensive garden. Seniors who deal with mobility or balance issues may do better with smaller flowerbeds. Determine whether your loved one would prefer to grow flowers or something that she can use in her home such as herbs or vegetables. Keep in mind that different types of plants require different skills and levels of attention to properly raise, and you do not want to frustrate her with an overly difficult activity.

Consider containers. Gardening does not have to mean getting out into the lawn and digging in the soil. Your parent can also enjoy the benefits of gardening with a container garden. Small pots containing herbs can be kept on her kitchen windowsill. Larger pots for flowers or small vegetable plants such as tomatoes can be kept on her front porch or positioned in the sun during the day.

Use proper protection. The spring marks the return of many of the pests and dangers outside. This means it is necessary for your parent to use proper precautions when gardening. Gloves guard her hands from sticks, bugs, and anything else that may be in the dirt. Knee pads or a kneeler can guard her while she is on her knees. Long sleeves and long pants protect against bugs, sharp plants, and the sun. Sunscreen and a large-brimmed hat offer essential sun protection and help keep her cooler.

Set a schedule. Schedules and routine are extremely useful when it comes to senior care. This predictability offers structure and control in your parent's life so she feels more secure. It also gives her something to look forward to each day. Establish a time that you and her senior health care services provider should head out into the garden with your loved one and work on tasks such as weeding, pruning, and watering.

Stretch the benefits. Gardening promotes physical activity and creates a sense of accomplishment. Stretch the benefits further with mental stimulation from learning new things. Encourage your parent to research ways to improve her gardening and to keep a gardening journal. These activities will help to keep her mind and her memory sharp and active.

If you or an aging loved one are considering hiring senior care in Woodstock, GA, please contact the caring staff at Home Helpers, call (678) 430-8511.