Friday, February 26, 2010

Who has gardens?

Are you wondering if your cancer center or health care facility has a garden of any kind? I just found a wonderful website, The Therapeutic Landscapes Network, that has dozens, if not hundreds, of healing gardens listed alphabetically by facility name.

These gardens are usually not vegetable gardens, but knowing that a medical center has already started the process of integrating nature and gardens into the healing environment keeps the door open to expand the vision of beneficial outcomes of actually incorporating a section devoted to vegetables and the healing experience that can come from actually participating in gardening (i.e., as opposed to viewing or sitting in nature, both experiences also beneficial but different from the experience of actually tending a garden).

I don't do nearly as much traveling around the country as I used to (by choice), but now I am motivated to always seek out and ask to see healing gardens wherever I am asked to speak or just visit for fun.

Check out the list to see if your cancer center is on the list. If not, starting discussion for a future project such as a Cancer Victory Garden™ will certainly be a rewarding and happy use of time and effort, both for yourself and all future patients. In addition, explore the entire website for additional information and inspiration about healing gardens and landscapes.

"He who plants a garden, plants happiness." ~ Chinese proverb

Cultivating health through a garden's nourishment of both body and soul,

Diana Dyer, MS, RD

Monday, February 15, 2010

Window Gardens

Here are two contrasting views of what can be done with windows:

(1) South-facing tall windows in the basement of the house we're remodeling. Look out - I cropped this picture to just show the windows, but this area is a hard hat zone and major trip hazard right now, seriously.

(2) Take a look at this short video about vertical window veggie farms. It shows what can be done to grow your own food with no outside space for gardening and no fancy or expensive gardening equipment of any kind (none!). This is amazing, and I wish all the success in the world to this group of young people! I'll be ready next year to be inspired by this video to do inside window-gardening during those dark days of winter, and likely year-round, too. No more excuses - find a window and get started.

Cultivating health through a garden's nourishment of both body and soul,

Diana Dyer, MS, RD