When you picture a beautiful, lush, and thriving garden full of trees, flourishing plants, and colorful pops of flowers everywhere, we’re sure your mind drifts off into a state of peace, enjoyment, and relaxation. This thought, that beauty in the form of landscape can help create a positive sense of environment or alter the state of your thinking, is more than just an idea, in fact, it’s been proven in dozens of studies throughout the decades.
It might go without saying – but we’ll say it anyway – that landscape design can play an enormous role in therapeutic and physical healing for people who are staying in hospitals, doctor’s offices, or other kinds of healthcare facilities. People, especially people who are presently patients, appreciate green space, beautiful gardens, and lush grounds – they provide incentive to heal, positive mindsets, and promote an overall happy, easy-going feeling.
In fact, a growing body of research proves that by simply being around nature can help improve humans’ health and happiness. In 2016, a month-long study was conducted in the UK by the University of Derby and the Wildlife Trusts where it was found that even though plants and landscape can’t necessarily be a miracle healer for all disease, interacting with foliage and fauna, being around nature, and enjoying the sights, smells, and textures of plants can significantly improve the health and happiness of people.
So, how do you go about providing the most beautiful, therapeutic landscape possible for a hospital environment? We’re glad you asked. Check out our guide below to review the Landcrafters’ ultimate tips and tricks for creating a gorgeous space that promotes health, happiness, and healing.
The Greener Pasture Idea
We don’t mean this in a mocking way, we simply mean that keeping the hospital landscape green, lush, and vibrant will help to motivate patients to heal so they can step outside and enjoy the beauty that surrounds the hospital.
In Florida, this can be quite the challenge, so ensure that you’re including lots of watering into your landscaping schedule as well as implementing systems that can best help you harness the rain to keep your garden, lawn, or landscape flourishing.
We suggest that your hospital landscape be lush and layered, giving it almost a secret garden vibe. You want to provide a haven for your patients, even if they’re not yet able to explore the path leading through your lawn. Just a glance from a hospital window onto the thriving wilderness that lay before them can have therapeutic, healing effects on a patient. Consider shaded tree, flowers and shrubs of all heights and colors, and plenty of plants that provide privacy, beauty, and an atmosphere that promotes healing.
The More Life the Better
Your garden or landscape is certainly going to be a beautiful space filled with life, love, and lushness, but it only helps provide a more healing environment if you plant trees, flowers, and other fauna that will attract wildlife. Consider the native Florida plants that will bring in fluttering creatures that are guaranteed to lift spirits. We’re talking butterflies, hummingbirds, bees, and more – including plants that will attract these creatures will certainly do wonders for the mood of all the patients who walk the path, or even just glimpse down from a hospital window.
In Florida, attracting butterflies means including plants like Black-Eyed Susan, Bottlebrush, Butterfly Bush, Calico Flower, Cassia, Coral Bean and Coral Honeysuckle. For birds, we suggest native plants like American Beautyberry, Red Mulberry, and Holly – if you’re looking to specifically attract hummingbirds, nectar-producing plants like Firebush and Shrimp Plant are sure to attract them.
The Healing Power of Water
Never overlook the healing power of including water in your garden or landscape. Water is said to be soothing, not just the sound (though, the delicate flow of a fountain is sure to bring peace), but the sight of running water as well.
Choose water features that are easy to maintain and won’t annoy your visitors, meaning, stay away from the sound of dripping faucets and the smell of algae due to neglected cleaning – this is a surefire way to cancel out any peace of mind you were hoping to bring your patients.
Smells and Sights – Senses Matter
It’s not enough to just implement a garden that looks beautiful, although, we’re certainly not saying that a gorgeous-looking garden will have any detrimental effects. What we mean is, when designing your hospital landscape, consider all the senses. You want to engage your visitors. You want them to want to touch and smell and hear and see everything they can.
Consider healing plants that have therapeutic elements, like lavender, rosemary, catnip sage, and more. Implement Elephant Ears in your landscaping area, or fuzzy Lamb Ear Plants that beg to be touched. You want your patients to have a feast for their eyes, but you can’ stop there.
Think about adding in sounds, too. Consider soft chimes or ornamental glass pieces that rustle gently in the breeze as people explore your landscape. Imagine the peace that comes with seeing butterflies gently lift off of flowers or smelling the lavender plants as the scent wafts through the air or hearing the gently tinkling of glass beads as the breeze blows through. Sound calming? We thought so.
Consider Your Walkways
This is one of the most important elements when it comes to planning your hospital garden or lawn. You want to make sure you’re balancing the amount of walkway with the amount of landscape. For instance, you don’t’ want concrete pathways mucking up your gorgeous, lush, healing landscape, but you also don’t want to make your garden an experience that only a few people can enjoy.
Because you’re adding this garden to a hospital environment, it’s important to consider that you’ll be crafting it for people who either sick, in recovery, dealing with challenging health issues, or are plagued by bother physical issues – you don’t want to make your walkways too narrow or challenging.
Ensure that they’re smooth, accessible, and that there’s plenty of space between the sidewalk and the plants. The last thing you want is your garden making an experience with nature more stressful, so ensure that the paths are wide for wheelchairs, have enough space for multiple visitors, and won’t be impeded by your choice of plants.
Do you love our landscaping ideas? Are you interested in more tips and tricks to help boost the therapeutic levels of your lawn or landscape? We’re here to offer you all the advice, guidance, and services you might need. Check out our Landcrafters’ website at Landcraftersfl.com or reach out to us for a phone call at (727)-446-2598. We hope our guide was helpful and we can’t wait to hear from you!
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