Wildwood residents tap into their love of gardening during the pandemic

‘The world continues to grow’

In recent weeks, the Wildwood Care Centre courtyard has become the perfect place for residents to tap into their talents for gardening.

With restrictions in place on large-group indoor programming in long-term care homes due to the ongoing global COVID-19 pandemic, the courtyard and its gardens have provided residents with meaningful activities in a safe environment.

“Residents have been enjoying the gardens here; they have been watering the gardens (and) they have enjoyed planting tomatoes, so they’re enjoying being out there watching things grow,” says Alison Hoskins, the St. Marys, Ont. long-term care and retirement home’s life enrichment co-ordinator.

For many residents, gardening is an activity they have enjoyed their whole lives, so planting flowers, growing vegetables and watering is a way to not only latch on to their past but to continue doing something they love.

“They love coming out to their courtyard and doing the gardening and watching everything grow – that’s what they all talk about,” Alison says.

While the pandemic has impacted all of our lives in some way, Alison notes the residents’ work in the Wildwood Care Centre courtyard to help grow plants is a metaphor for perseverance during a challenging time.

“The world continues to grow,” she says. “There are positives, and we have to keep looking at the bright side of things.”

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