Time spent outside helps energize you. Sunlight can improve your mood and help with the pain. Being outside can boost your immune system and make you feel more focused. As you age, mobility and vision changes can make it harder to spend time outdoors.
Arthritis pain keeps your parents from being able to walk long distances. Instead, they putter around the yard, staying within easy reach of a bench or chair. Bright sunlight increases the risk of cataracts. They can’t be outside without sunglasses that protect against UVA and UVB rays.
One of the best ways for them to enjoy time outside is by establishing gardens. A ground-level garden may be harder to manage. Have you considered these gardening projects that work well when there are mobility and vision issues?
Instead of a garden placed in the ground, grow in large containers. Plant pots and half whiskey barrel planters are popular. You can save money and use giant plastic buckets. No matter which you use, drill holes in the bottom to allow rainwater to drain out.
To start gardening in a container, place a layer of crushed stone. That also helps with drainage. Top it up with potting soil or a mix of garden soil and compost. As you add seedlings or seeds, don’t overcrowd the pot.
Container gardens are easy to set up on a deck or patio. They’re ideal if your parent uses a wheelchair or needs to sit down while gardening.
Vertical and Raised Bed Gardens
Vertical and raised bed gardens are planted in raised beds built from a kit or use DIY instructions and lumber. With a raised bed, you want the top of the garden bed to be at the same height as a counter or table that’s wheelchair accessible.
Vertical gardens are similar; only the garden structure is built vertically and often uses the wall or a beam over a roof deck or pergola as support. Some people use skids and anchor them into the ground with posts.
To use a skid:
- Line the back with heavy-duty landscaping fabric.
- Stand the skid up and anchor it to the ground using cedar posts.
- Fill the skid with potting soil.
- Plant vegetables that can climb, such as cucumbers or pole beans.
Have you talked to a senior care agency about having caregivers available to help your parents? If they need help with ambulation or supervision when they’re outside, senior care aides are ideal. They’ll help your parents carry gardening supplies and ripe produce. They’ll also make sure your parents don’t overheat or becoming dehydrated.
If you or someone you know needs help with Senior Care in Cascade, MI, contact Gauthier Family Home Care. We provide quality and affordable home care services in our community. Call us at (616) 258-2300 for more information.
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