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Gardening for the Elderly

Benefits of Gardening for the Elderly

Gardening is one of those few activities recommended for the Elderly.  It’s fun, enjoyable, relieves stress and anxiety, provides a low impact form of exercise and can provide a sense of pride and achievement.  What’s not to like about it!  It is however, one of those pastimes that you either love or hate!

The Benefits

  • Increased mobility
  • Reduced stress
  • Alleviates depression
  • Increased Vitamin D absorption (due to time spent outdoors)
  • Improved sleep cycles
  • Improvement in attention
  • Reduction in chronic pain
  • Improves endurance and strength
  • Increases sense of control and stability

 

Gardening Tips

  • Use raised flower beds to avoid bending over.
  • Plant herbs you can dry and use for cooking, crafts and design projects.
  • Plant with a variety of colours, scents and textures to create a good sensory experience that can even help to jog memories. Colours and textures can invoke feelings of calm, tranquillity and happiness.
  • Plant some edible plants.
  • Grow some of your own vegetables or fruits.

If you don’t have the space for your own garden, Community Gardens are a great option to grow your own veggies, fruit, herbs, flowers, and plants, organic and chemical free.

In Melbourne you can join a ‘Shared Garden’ where volunteers work together to care for the garden and take a share of what is produced or become part of an “Allotment Garden” with your own plot to do as you wish.  There are many Community Gardens based around Melbourne and Geelong.  To find out more about starting a Community Garden or joining an established one visit Community Gardens Australia.

Joining a Community Garden is also a great way to socialise and meet new people!  You could even consider becoming a Community Garden Co-ordinator overseeing what resources are needed, what local funding is available and what events are happening and share this with your Garden Network.

Gardening is one of those activities you can do alone or with others and enjoy the journey!  It’s rewarding being able to see your hard work bloom in the weeks and months ahead.  We have gardening programs at a number of our homes that many of our residents participate in.  If you would like to know more details, or to contact one of our homes, please call us on (03) 9559 0400 or email us here.

 

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