Posted By: Michelle Kuehler /
The love of gardening does not fade with age or disability but the work of toting heavy tools and materials, getting down on your hands and knees to prune or dig and even getting around in the garden can be difficult or impossible for those with physical challenges. Fortunately, there are some things you can do to preserve your hobby and keep gardening just as calming, fulfilling and healthful.
Getting Around the Garden
If you require a wheel chair to move through your garden, widen the walkways and consider adding stone, brick or wooden ramps. If you are able to walk but require a little extra help, consider adding handrails and walkways made of materials that are not slippery when they become moist. You may also want to add a bench or two for a comfortable spot to relax and enjoy your garden.
The Right Tools
Gather an arsenal of lightweight gardening tools with large handles for a better grip or long handles if you use a wheelchair. If you are visually impaired you may also want to buy or paint your tools in bright colors. Purchase a tool carrier, an apron with large pockets or a child’s wagon or wheeled caddie to easily tote your gardening tools. You may also want to install an irrigation system to diminish the need for carrying around a hose or watering can. Also, try Grower's Secret 521, a lavender scented fish emulsion fertilizer that helps your plants grow faster and bigger. Grower's Secret 521 is refined enough to pass through your irrigation system or hose-end sprayer, eliminating the need to carry around large bags of fertilizer.
Redesigning Your Garden
If it is difficult to bend down, try hanging baskets or install containers or window boxes at an appropriate level for you to work. Raised beds also make gardening more accessible for those unable to bend and those who use a wheel chair. Make sure all sides of the bed are accessible and consider what height will work best for you.
Plants for the visually Impaired
Choose larger or palletized seeds and varieties that are bright, scented or edible to satisfy the senses.
If you don’t have a disability, think about those in your life that would benefit from gardening. Offer to help with the gardening chores that they might not be able to manage. The effort will be rewarding for both of you.