healing gardens.

I had this post in my drafts, not knowing that I might need this information to help me heal from my own grief.As I process our loss, and what the future days, weeks, and months have in store for me and my family, I do know that heading into spring, warmer days, and hard work at the nursery are going to help me heal and become restored.

Here is the original post about our day at the Shade Tree Short Course in Ames, IA, written shortly after the tragedy of losing a friend.

IMG_6399Dave and I spent Wednesday and Thursday at the Shade Tree Short Course in Ames. To be honest, I was completely distracted all day Thursday after learning of a terrible tragedy back home, however I did manage to learn a few things between naps (I was so emotionally exhausted I couldn't stay awake.)

The first session we went to on Thursday was about Healing Gardens. The landscape architect who presented talked about his project to install a healing garden at Rochester Hospital in New York. It was like my two worlds (health care and nursery life) were colliding--I was interested.

He talked about the benefits of having the garden, not only for the patients, but for their families, and not surprisingly for the staff of the hospital. The design tips he shared, I already knew, but it was a good refresher. Its not just about the visual, its the smells, the touch of the plants, and the overall "feeling" you get from being in a calming, healing space.

It got me thinking, how neat would it be to have a "healing" or "meditation" garden in my own yard. I know gardening is therapeutic. Being outdoors, getting vit D, being alone with your thoughts, or as a distraction for your thoughts. I never understood or appreciated the effect of plants until I got into this nursery business. And now, during this difficult time, I think I will understand it more and more as I use nature and my garden as a way to heal from my grief.

Stay tuned for how I incorporate what I learned into my own version of a "healing garden."