Designing for Alzheimer's
I'd been commissioned to design and implement a garden for a gentleman with Alzheimer's, by his son and carer.
It's been a fulfilling journey with the gentleman helping as much as he was able, thereby using the garden and gaining more fresh air, vitamin D and exercise than he would otherwise have done.
He seems to enjoy my company and is often with me as I work. I reassure him when he becomes frustrated with his memory loss and he in turn makes some very quick observational jokes!
I wanted to retain some of the few plants his late wife put in and enhance those areas at the same time, so what was once the rose bed now also has chrysanthemums between them for added colour.
For the first time ever they are growing their own fruit and vegetables and they're loving the results! The father loves his bright colours and he now has colour throughout the year and he's enjoying watching all the new colours that keep emerging.
We've kept the large pond the gentleman built and added a rockery with a waterfall for a different height in the garden. For those who've not yet guessed, it is also a sensory garden.
I don't normally do full design work, merely suggesting okay for places or a better use for a piece of garden, but this has been a worthwhile project in every way.
It was summed up for me by the son putting an arm around my shoulders while liking at the garden, taking a relaxing breath and thanking me from the bottom of his heart.