We are launching a campaign to get Welsh folk into the garden in a bid to improve social interaction and get people to spend quality time together.
Gardening is hugely beneficial, especially for the elderly or people with dementia, and it can help the mind and body.
This year we want to see more people getting out into their gardens and making good use of them, so we’re launching the #GetGardening campaign. Those who believe gardening is only for the young and more mobile among us, couldn’t be more wrong, as it’s just as much for the elderly too.
We regularly encourage our older service users to get into the garden if they can. It’s a brilliant way for them to get some fresh air and connect with the natural world. It’s also a great way for them to get some exercise.
You can burn up to 250 k/cal for every 30 minutes of digging you do, 195 k/cal mowing the lawn and 105 k/cal weeding and 100 k/cal raking. Beds, equipment and tools can all be modified for anyone who finds it difficult to get around too, so there really is no excuse.
Throughout the summer we’ll be posting regular gardening tips and advice here on our blog and using the hashtag #GetGardening on social media so people can find these posts easily. There are also blog posts on the benefits of gardening as well as ideas for plants that gardeners can grow and even ideas for those who don’t have much outdoor space.
Gardening is a great activity for people to do together, improving social interaction and spending quality time together in the great outdoors. It is the perfect time of year to be outside and we’d encourage the people of Wales to get gardening!
We also have service users with dementia and helping them to maintain their physical activity, cognitive function and social interaction is extremely important to enable them to lead as normal a life as possible. Gardening is a great activity they can do.
Planting, pruning, digging, sweeping and weeding can improve dexterity skills. With a carer or family member, a person with dementia can benefit cognitively from gardening too through the planning stages, deciding what seeds to sow, what vegetables to grow or how they want the overall garden to look if you’re giving it a complete makeover.
Maintaining a garden gives a person with dementia a task to focus on every day/week as ongoing jobs such as watering and pruning need doing.
Gardening is also fantastic for stimulation of the senses, there are lots of wonderful smells emitting from flowers, herbs, grass and even soil and the colours and light can really spark the imagination. There’s also the sensation of touch, of soil or plants in your hands as you plant them, and fantastic sounds too such as birdsong, rustling of leaves in the wind and the odd sounds of wildlife.
It’s the perfect place to sit and relax, for an elderly person or a person with dementia to reflect and just feel a sense of calm wash over them.