Horticulture is Therapy Mike MaddoxHorticulture Educator, Rock Co. UW-ExtensionDirector of Education, Rotary Botanical Gardens
Horticulture The art and science of growing fruits, vegetables, flowers, and ornamental plants
Benefits of Plants Environmental Economic Social / personal wellness
Benefits of Plants: Wellness Surgery Recovery Shorter post-operative stays Less use of potent drugs and better attitudes Roger Ulrich. Texas A &M. Studies on nature and medical recovery
The Neese Memorial Rooftop Garden, Beloit Hospital
Benefits of Plants: Wellness Lifestyle Recovery Attention fatigue restored Improved relationships and career coping Cimprich, B. 1992. Attentional Fatigue Following Breast Cancer Surgery. Research in Nursing and Health 15, 199-207
Benefits of Plants: Wellness In laboratory research, visual exposure to settings with trees has produced significant recovery from stress within five minutes, as indicated by changes in blood pressure and muscle tension. Dr. Roger S. Ulrich Texas A&M University
Horticultural Therapy Horticultural therapy (HT) is not only an emerging profession, it is a time-proven practice. The therapeutic benefits of peaceful garden environments have been understood since ancient times. In the 19th century, Dr. Benjamin Rush, a signer of the Declaration of Independence and considered to be the "Father of American Psychiatry," reported that garden settings held curative effects for people with mental illness. Rehabilitative care of hospitalized war veterans in the 1940’s and 1950’s greatly expanded the practice of HT. Today, HT is recognized as a practical and viable treatment with wide-ranging benefits for people in therapeutic, vocational, and wellness programs. American Horticulture Therapy Association
Horticultural Therapy The use of plants by a trained professional as a medically prescribed procedure through which certain clinically defined goals of a client may be met. American Horticultural Therapy Association http://www.ahta.org/ Active process
Therapeutic Horticulture Nearby-by nature Increased Property values Residential neighborhood satisfaction Life satisfaction Tourism Social interaction Decreased Crime
Therapeutic Horticulture Healing landscapes Found in treatment settings A space to look out at A space for passive or quasi-passive activities Can be used by patients, visitors, and staff Have therapeutic effects Not for organized treatment
Initial Program Ideas Teach gardening to jail inmates MGV selected and hired to be garden educators Nutrition education segment added later In response to need to feed participants Utilize harvest in kitchen to offset meal preparation costs County went to caterer that year; produce not wanted by subcontractor
What Really Happened Program evolved into reinforcing life-skills development taught in RECAP. Communication, following directions, team work, responsibility, success, etc. Preparation for vocational placement. Outside of green industry Diversionary activity for when released. Reduce recidivism Produce donated to area food pantries (80%) and other county institutions (20%)
Impact "Getting out of unit and away from same four walls - keeps my mind occupied and not think of bad stuff." Steven. “My wife and kids go to Echo [food pantry]. Even though I’m in here, I still feel like I’m providing for them.” Chip.
Impact “I need to be a good role model for my kids… I like that the garden gives back to the community…” Chris. “I already know how to rototill… it’s now learning how to work with others.” Gary.
Impact “… vegetable soup really ain’t all that bad! I did not pick anything out of it and I ate it all. I would NEVER even try it had I been on the outside.” Tammy. “There was noticeable improvement in attitude after the inmates ate the vegetable soup for lunch in the unit.” Lyle Yaun, RECAP Community Service Coordinator.
Impact “…before this, my idea of cooking was going through the drive thru at McDonalds." John. “…I never knew where food came from. When I get out, I want to go to culinary school at [the tech-college]." Ebert.
Impact "I learned how to enjoy life's simple pleasures." Carlos. “…I never had a garden before but would like to have one now that I know more.” Carl.