Gardening therapy via provider-vendor partnership

Share this content:
Eldergrow Garden Program
Eldergrow Garden Program

A Long Island nursing home is partnering with a Seattle startup to use gardening as therapy for its residents.

Parker Jewish Institute of New Hyde Park, NY, announced last week that it's teaming up with the company Eldergrow to launch its new horticultural therapy offering. Dubbed as the “Eldergrow Garden Program,” it hopes to bring the benefits of the outdoors into senior care facilities.

Eldergrow's services include mobile gardens for long-term care facilities, along with educators to teach seniors about gardening, as well as subscription-based products and programming, according to a press release. The for-profit company now provides its services in 50 different communities in eight states. Horticultural therapy, it claims, can help to reduce depression while enhancing mood and sleep, improving coordination and self-esteem, and lowering the risk factors for dementia.

Parker Jewish's mobile garden, which debuted on Tuesday (April 24), will be available year-round, with Eldergrow educators teaching classes to its residents, and building relationships through ongoing “enrichment classes” tied to horticulture, culinary learning and gardening art, according to the release.

“Our indoor garden will provide opportunities for sensory stimulation and creative expression while giving our residents a renewed sense of purpose as they care for their garden,” said Kathleen Keegan, Parker's director of therapeutic recreation.