The nights are getting longer, and the days are getting cooler. It’s time for fall gardening! And what a wonderful way for home caregivers to introduce a low-level activity to their aging parents.
Small gardening projects for seniors offer the rewards of interaction and socialization that aging parents may crave while providing exercise opportunities and a colorful backdrop for fall decorating.
Gardening Projects for Seniors Offers Key Rewards for Caregivers and Aging Parents
2. 1. Socialization.
A A few minutes spent tending a patio garden or a window box allows a caregiver and loved one an opportunity to socialize and interact in a new way.
2. 2. Accomplishment.
T The reward of planting a seed and watching it grow or harvesting a kitchen herb garden for dinner preparations allows the aging parent to contribute to household activities and chores.3.
2. 3. Activity.
G Gardening encourages the family caregiver and their loved one to participate in a low-level activity that includes sunshine, fresh air, warm soil and living plants. Even a terrarium placed near a favorite chair or bedside provides an alternative to passive activities such as watching television.
. 4. Memory Recall.
ry If a loved one enjoyed gardening during their more active years, their senses may respond to familiar gardening actions. For instance, the weight and feel of favorite trowel or well-worn gardening gloves may provide a friendly memory.
A neighbor couple continued to garden long after most familiar routines and activities were impossible for the husband, an Alzheimer’s patient. In the warm sun, his wife would guide him through familiar routines such as selecting seedlings, preparing the soil, and positioning the plant. Their ability to work shoulder-to-shoulder was a reassuring equalizer in their ever-changing roles from husband and wife to care recipient and caregiver.
If you would like some fall gardening ideas, visit your local Master Gardeners program for best plant selections suited to your region and climate.