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Published: Thursday, 8/14/2008

Gardening Solutions For Seniors


For those who have trouble with the usual kneeling, bending and stretching that go along with gardening; the joy of gardening does not have to be impossible. People with disabilities have their homes and vehicles adjusted to their needs. So why not do the same things with their gardens? With some extra planning, sturdy materials and willing helpers, gardens can be brought to new heights.

Higher work areas make it much easier for those who need to sit to participate in the hands-on care of a garden. An easy, delightful way to raise up a flower garden is to plant flowers in an old wagon. When you find the wagon, fill it with pots of flowers. Keeping the flowers in pots will ensure that they receive and retain adequate water and fertilizer and that the nutrients don t slip through the slats.

Landscaping timbers, stacked one on top of the other, about seven timbers high, is also ideal for a raised flower or vegetable garden. Make sure that the slats that actually raise the bed, the part where the dirt will be placed, has plenty of space for water drainage. You can grow flowers, vegetables or both.

Another way to bring the ground up to you is to use planters. You can find large, plastic planters at many stores. You will have to limit your plants to one variety per planter. While you re raising your garden, don t forget to raise your greenhouse and your compost pile, too.

Here are some other tips for keeping gardening easy. Make a planter out of a hoe and save your back. Get a length of hose about the same length as your hoe. Tape the hose to the hoe and attach a funnel to the top of the hose. After you have made the planting rows with your hoe, go back with the hoe and drop the seeds through the funnel. They will tumble down the hose and into the row. You won t even have to lean over.

Make hauling topsoil, seeds and other things easy by hooking a bicycle basket on your walker or keeping a small wagon handy. Convert a golf cart into a tiny tractor. If you like hanging baskets, make them easier to lift up and down by mixing peat moss with potting soil. A garden kneeler with handles on each side will also provide a helping hand when you re rising from the ground.

While these tips are certainly not earth-shattering, they're worth a second look, especially if you love gardening but have problems doing the everyday gardening chores.

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