My grandmother is 87 years old and she is brave. Just last year, she underwent heart valve replacement surgery with good prospects and a free pass to return to her usual activities and interests.
Her first job was tending to her peony bushes and building a garden trellis for some climbing flowers.
If that doesn’t prove that garden bugs never leave us, I don’t know what is. Even at a time when many of us are slowing down and inactive, more and more seniors are reluctant to give up gardening. It should be like this!
While it’s wise to slow down a bit, there’s a lot we can do as we age to keep our gardens as beautiful and productive as ever. Since gardening has so many benefits, it’s wise to incorporate some of the tips and tricks we’ll discuss below into your daily routine.
From changing tools to making adjustments on the job, these tips can help keep your gardening virus alive for the rest of your life! So, how to health the benefits of gardening for seniors, read the article below.
Benefits Of Gardening For Seniors
Not only is gardening a great form of low-intensity exercise, but it also exposes us to some much-needed fresh air and sunlight.
Gardening requires concentration, which keeps the mind sharp and increases focus. Other delightful side effects of flower bed crafts of any age are:
If that hasn’t convinced you that everyone should garden, there’s even less scientific reason to encourage green thumbs.
Gardening for my family helps bridge the gap between my own children and their great-grandmothers. As they communicate via Facebook, it’s important to develop a common bond to practice their relationships.
Gardening is that bond.
Obstacles To Overcome
While our most valuable generation may also be passionate about their lawns and gardens, that’s often not enough.
As you age, even a simple loft bed can sometimes seem overwhelming. Leaning, standing, bending, and digging can create challenges and prevent older gardeners from gardening without the right tools to help them.
One way we sidestep some of the difficulties my grandmother faced is to talk a lot about her garden. I learned that many of their problems can be easily solved with the right technology, hacks, and even the right products that can be found online.
(Remember, this generation didn’t grow up in the age of Amazon shopping. They may never have thought that solutions exist in the form of simple ergonomic tools, or that they are as affordable or easy to buy as we know it his!)
Best Practices For A Lifetime Of Growing
Many older gardeners may live alone at home, but also want to be independent in the garden.
The following tips can help us all continue meaningful gardening and enable older hobbyists to lead normal and meaningful lives.
1. Create Raised Beds
Even at 38, I appreciate a good raised bed garden system.
Even at 38, I appreciate a good raised bed garden system.
2. Sit Comfortably
There is no reason for anyone to kneel today.
There are so many garden carts and stools on the market that provide a comfortable sitting position so you can work longer in the garden without interruption.
>>> See more: the beginners guide to gardening
3. Protect Yourself
The older you get, the more sensitive you are to heat and sunlight.
A good garden hat, sunglasses, sunscreen, and a long-sleeved shirt are essential to staying cool and avoiding the risk of heatstroke, burns, or photosensitivity that many common medications can cause.
4. Avoid Peak Hours
In addition to covering, it is recommended to avoid the harshest sunlight between 10am and 2pm. in most North American time zones.
Follow a common-sense rule about heat and humidity: don’t garden outdoors when your local weather department has a high temperature warning!
Air quality is another common problem for people with respiratory diseases, and when the quality level is low, they should stay indoors and avoid strenuous activity.
5. Go Ergonomic
Not all tools are created equal. Spend a few extra bucks on a garden tool with a soft handle that’s easy to hold and a length that fits your body.
I find this is a game changer regardless of age or physical condition!
6. Extend Safety Routines
If you or a loved one have set up safety or emergency services in case of a fall or accident, make sure the service arrives where the gardening will take place.
The security system I installed for my grandmother had a large radius, but we moved her flower bed closer to the house to make sure she was within range of her alarm base.
If you don’t have an alarm system installed but need extra security while working outdoors, you can take a cordless phone or cell phone with you to the area of your garden. Test everyone’s range to make sure that a cry for help can be heard – if needed.
7. Make It Bright
Acquired color blindness is common in people over the age of 60.
Get rid of any color clutter by investing in brightly colored garden tools and accessories. Also make sure that labels for common applications (such as fertilizers or herbicides) are easy to read.
You can also paint the handles of the tools with neon spray paint to make them easier to find. My husband has been making this for his garden and tractor equipment for years and it really saves time!
Gardening As A Family Affair
While all the tips we’ve shared go a long way toward improving the quality of your garden life and planting beds, what better way to ensure a safe gardening experience than by creating family traditions around your green thumb.
Even if you don’t always get help with your daily weeding and watering, a weekly gardening session is a great way to check in with your family and create lasting memories.
You won’t regret your time together. Invite them to get their hands dirty!
The Future Of Senior Care?
The benefits of gardening become more apparent to us as we age, and we should see changes in the way we approach this activity.
Many community centers, senior centers, and long-term care homes integrate gardening into citizens’ daily lives.
Given the potential to reduce overall healthcare costs and improve quality of life, I’m excited to see what new developments will emerge in senior gardening.
Are you a veteran gardener looking forward to moving on for the rest of your life? What tips can you share with others to help them stay engaged in activities they love so much? Answer The Question loves to hear it in the comments!