FAMILY 049Being a senior, shouldn’t stop you from doing whatever you choose to, and that includes gardening. Using raised bed techniques, it’s possible to create a flourishing garden and keep your green thumb, without needing a lot of assistance. Let’s take a look at raised bed gardening for access by seniors in wheelchairs and walkers and the best way to do it. If you love green and growing things, it’s a great way to garden.

You don’t have to get down on your hands and knees to enjoy gardening. Whether you use a wheelchair or scooter, or simply have a bad back, you can use raised beds to bring the plants to your level. Make sure you choose a comfortable height – constructing the beds at twenty-eight to thirty inches high works well for most people. In addition, you’ll need to think about width. It can be hard to reach the center of the bed from a seated position if the bed is too deep. Length can be as much as you like, however, and you can include multiple beds in one space.

Lumber consisting of two by eights supported by four by fours at each corner is one popular way to create a raised bed. Make sure the sides are tight and strong, and fill the bed with the desired mix of topsoil, compost, and other soil improvers, then start planting. Large pots are worthwhile, too, and you can grow nearly anything in them, from vines to small trees! Put pots on a wheeled stand to make them easy to move, too.

Be sure that the paths between your raised beds are easy to navigate – mowing them can be tricky, so some people use mulch. However, if you use a wheelchair or scooter, mulch can be hard to move over. Pea gravel or paved paths are a popular choice that has relatively low maintenance, but they take a little extra effort. Some people use wood decking as well.

Remember to plan your beds to make the best use of the space. Tall plants go in the back or middle of the bed, and shorter ones go toward the fronts or edges. Draping plants are also appropriate for the edge of a bed. Perennials take longer to get started than annuals, but require little care and don’t need yearly replacement.

Raised beds generally require less care than pots, since they have contact with the ground. However, morning watering is still important, since raised beds will retain less water than plants directly in the ground. Don’t water during the hottest part of the day. If you can’t make it out in the morning, try an evening watering instead. Mulch around plants, or weed them regularly – something that’s much easier in a bed you can easily reach. Anyone should be able to garden, and with a simple raised bed, it’s not hard to do.

Leave a Reply