Why would a couple of seniors, who should be thinking about retiring, build a botanical garden? Answer: because these “seasoned” husband-and-wife gardening-geeks have discovered first-hand how gardens affect people, and they want to help.
When you plant a flower, pluck weeds, or stroll through a garden, you are redirecting your attention away from stress factors. It’s just you and the earth. No noise, no distractions, no demands. Plants are non-judgemental. It has almost the same effect like the wonderful programs where dogs (and their owners) visit hospitals to make people feel better. The physical act of gardening touches on all five of our senses and anyone can do it. What other “hobby” does that for people?
Zen vs The Cat:
Real life challenges in creating a botanical garden. One of the gardens is an authentic Oriental Garden and each day we rake the soft gravel in the Zen Garden. A horrifying thought entered our minds. OMG!!! The cat!!! What if our furry friend thinks we just created the world’s largest kitty litter box??? We could swear she was thinking “wow, you shouldn’t have!” Luckily…she wasn’t interested.
What Is It About Gardens That Help People?
People love gardens for many reasons: to take a break from the rat race; to grow food free of chemicals; as a social event to share experiences, or to be peacefully alone; to enjoy nature; to escape the digital world; to help our environment; to be inspired; to have a picnic or say their wedding vows; for friendly competitions; for the plain and simple love of plants; and a myriad of other reasons. The one closest to our heart is that seniors enjoy a pleasant, non-rushed, safe and comfortable day in the fresh air and sunshine. How come? Because they can do this at gardens – it is an attainable day out for them.
For the Non-Gardeners Reading This:
Need proof? In the United States MORE PEOPLE VISIT GARDENS THEN DISNEYLAND AND DISNEY WORLD COMBINED. (Dr. Richard Benfield, world authority on garden tourism). And more people visit gardens then Las Vegas! How do you like them apples???
We need to realize, AND SAY IT OUT LOUD, how gardens impact our state of mind. Visitor feedback at the Quinte Botanical Gardens in 2018 revealed:
QBG Visitor Feedback
Deanna Groves, owner
Quinte Botanical Gardens
664 Glen Ross Rd. Frankford, Ontario