Thursday, April 25, 2024

Homes go green as residents vie for garden win

Spring has sprung  across Bolton Clarke’s Allity residential aged care homes with the launch of a new seasonal gardening competition. 

Brilliant budding blooms are being brought to life through The Best in Grow Resident Gardening Competition, with residents across 43 homes working to create stand-out gardens throughout November.

Homes will enter one of two prize categories for either a dementia specific or general garden, with winners to be announced in December.

The competition will be a key focus of activity for the month, with residents enjoying planning, trips to Bunnings and digging in to create inground beds, planters and pots with themes from sensory experiences to vegetable crops.

Professional Landscaper Designer, Steve Warner – who established OUTHOUSE Design and is immediate past President of the Australian Institute of Landscape Designers and Managers  – joined residents from Allity’s Greenview Community in Normanhurst to kickstart the contest.

The launch included development of a series of videos to guide residents in getting the best results from their entries.

“Gardening has physical benefits for residents and positive flow-on effects mentally,” he said.

“As we get older we need to keep moving and gardening is a great way for mild exercise for all ages and abilities.

“Getting out in the garden doesn’t just provide physical benefits such as mobility, circulation and mental engagement but it’s also the positive wellbeing and interaction with others that it brings.

“It’s the conversations that gardening can create, the reason to meet new friends and work together to bring the sense of joy and pride in creating and nurturing.”

Steve said gardens in the competition would range across a variety of formats, with size no obstacle to achieving great results for residents.

“Even the smallest space can bring joy and a reason to get outside, breath the fresh air, and get your hands dirty.

He said he looked forward to seeing the benefits first-hand over coming weeks.

“I’m keen to see the smiles and activity, conversations with each other and most importantly seeing residents have fun,” he said. “It’s the laughter, the problem-solving and if you are producing food or flowers, it’s the joy of giving.”

“What a great way for our residents to engage with their daughter or grandson, share knowledge, build new memories and give family and friends a reason to come and visit.”

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