January 10th, 2020
The Windsor of Palm Coast has introduced an innovative therapy garden to aid seniors living with memory-related impairments. The new addition to The Windsor’s Memory Care program will be unveiled in a special event with several media channels attending on Tuesday, Feb. 4, at 2:30 p.m. and also at 5:30 p.m. The event is open to the public. The Windsor of Palm Coast, which offers both Assisted Living and Memory Care, is owned and operated by Legend Senior Living®, a Wichita-based company with 41 senior living communities in six states.
Developed by Eldergrow™, the therapeutic garden has shown significant results in other Legend Memory Care residences. The garden itself is mobile, with grow lights to enable indoor, year-round growing, and is designed to provide a tactile, sensory experience to promote cognitive and memory function. Educators specifically trained in the use of the sensory garden as a therapy tool will teach classes, lead activities and measure participants' progress. This is the first garden of its kind in the Palm Coast area.
Documented research shows that this particular gardening program
- stimulates all 5 senses and memory;
- reduces dementia risk factors by 36%;
- improves motor skills, self-esteem and sleep;
- reduces agitation in those living with dementia;
- purifies the air, calms the mind and elevates mood.
Plantings may be focused on culinary gardening to grow live, fresh herbs and spices that are harvested by residents and used by the chef in featured dishes. Some programs feature flowering plants that can be the basis of garden art classes. In any case, a holistic, therapeutic, evidence-based horticulture program proves that cultivating a garden cultivates memory function, by easily incorporating an activity familiar to most residents.
"It's a favorite pastime of residents, because it's both fun and therapeutic," explained Debi Thomas, Legend's Vice President of Business Development. “Our programming makes the most of the neuroplasticity of the brain – that is, the ability of the brain to form new neural pathways, to learn new things and form new memories. Something apparently as simple as tending a garden has profound and positive effects compared to spending time mentally and physically idle." The therapy garden is just one of the innovative programs in use among Legend residences, said Thomas. "Legend Senior Living continuously implements the latest developments in brain research to enhance the residents' quality of life."
More information on the therapy garden and associated programming used at select Legend Assisted Living and Memory Care residences may be found at eldergrow.org.