Gardening With A Disability

Geraniums in my garden

Geraniums in my garden

Down here in Melbourne, Australia it’s midwinter. It’s dark and cloudy and blowing a gale today. In short, it’s about the opposite of perfect gardening weather. I’m thinking about gardening anyway though. I love gardening, although at the moment about the only kind that I can do is “remote control gardening” – telling other people what I want done and being bossy while they do it.

I spotted a link today on twitter from the Christopher Reeve foundation about Gardening from a Wheelchair. It led me to more web searching and surfing for information about gardening for those with disabilities.

Gathering Ideas

The Chicago botanic Garden have a great web page about their Buehler Enabling Garden. There are no instructions, but plenty of descriptions to give you ideas. I particularly love their vertical wall garden – I’ve never seen anything like that.

The Sensory Garden is the result of a 5 year makeover which has endevoured to cater for the needs of Carole Johnson, who has Multiple Sclerosis. There’s a wonderful “virtual tour” on the website with extensive text descriptions as well as photographs, and the garden can be seen in person for those lucky enough to be able to visit Staffordshire, England.

Finding Ways

My flatmate doing some pruning, while I watch through the window

My flatmate doing some pruning, while I watch through the window

The UK group “Carry On Gardening” has fantastic tips for disabled gardeners, and offers an extensive resource database for equipment and tools, including information about UK suppliers.

Garden Forever covers gardening for people of all ages, abilities and lifestyles. It includes information about gardening for people with allergies and gardening as therapy, amongst other articles.

More information about asthma and allergy friendly gardening can be found at the Allergy Free Gardening website.

Now Do It!

The next step is just to get out there and grow something! Start small, especially if you’re new to gardening in general.

You can find products – including books and equipment – useful for disabled and chronically ill gardeners at my Gardenability Amazon store.

- Ricky

If you are going to buy anything from, please consider using these links in this article. If you do, I'll get a commission - a small percentage of the sale price. It won't cost you anything and it will help to support me and No Pity City.

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2 responses to “Gardening With A Disability”

  1. Cesy

    I like that first article you linked to. Gardening accessibly isn’t something I’d really thought about before, but the points about tools and hanging baskets on pulleys and raised beds and smooth, wide paths are good.

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