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How to Garden with Limited Mobility

Man Planting In His Garden

Gardening is a popular hobby among seniors, and with good reason. It’s healthy, physically stimulating, and outdoors – all factors that can lead to a more fulfilling life as an elderly person. When you choose to garden as a hobby, you can help yourself maintain mobility and flexibility, become more social, and spend more time outside of the house. 

But most older people experience limited mobility, which can make gardening a challenge. Luckily, there are things you can do to ease the experience and adapt the practice to your individual needs. In addition to investing in a medical alert system for emergencies, finding raised flower beds, adaptive tools, and soaker hoses can all improve your experience.

Why Raised Flower Beds?

Raised flower beds look great, but they also improve the access a person has to the soil. Raising the height of the soil allows gardeners with limited mobility to work more comfortably from a seated position, either on the ground or in a low chair. Getting down on your hands and knees is one of the biggest challenges to gardening for people with physical limitations, so choosing a raised bed – ideally between 28 and 30 inches high – will significantly improve your experience. 

Choose Perennials

Planting beds is the hardest part of the gardening season. If you concentrate on planting perennials instead of annuals, you can reduce next year’s labor. Perennials require less maintenance and will come back each year, significantly easing your burden. 

Buy Adaptive Tools

Gardening Tools For Active Seniors

Gardening tools don’t look like they did a few years ago. Adaptive tools, or those designed for folks with limited mobility, provide more functionality for those who need it. Gardeners who suffer from arthritis and/or fibromyalgia will find relief in tool handles that allow your hand to naturally clench, which will reduce fatigue. And, as always, make sure your medical alert system is out in the garden with you, as you can never predict when an accident will happen. 

Invest in a Soaker Hose

Watering a garden can be both exhausting and time-consuming, especially if you use a regular garden hose. By contrast, soaker hoses allow users to cover their gardens more completely with water, providing a more level saturation level across the beds. This will allow most people to water their gardens with minimal movement. If your garden is very large, you might even consider an automated sprinkler system, which you can then set and forget about. If you have between one and four beds, a soaker hose should be sufficient. 

Medical Alert Systems for Limited-Mobility Gardening

Watering Your Alert1 Garden

Gardening is a fun, low-stress, and safe activity for most seniors and people with limited mobility. However, elderly folks can be especially susceptible to small dangers that accompany the hobby, like dehydration, insect bites and stings, and fatigue. If an accident happens, you want to be prepared. A medical alert system is a great option to ensure a safe, fun-filled afternoon in the garden.

Here’s how it works: If you experience an accident, all you need to do is press the big button on your portable (or home console) device. This will immediately connect you to a call center, who can then contact emergency services, friends, or family on your behalf. Plus, medical alert systems from Alert1 are designed to fit seamlessly into senior lifestyles, and they are less expensive when compared to Life Alert® costs