laura2736

Landscape design for aging in place

I thought it might be nice to have a discussion about multigenerational families and aging in place.
Over the years I have learned aspects in landscape design that one might want to consider if you have aging parents or grandparents at home. These days we are all spending more time at home and most are wanting to maximize their outdoor space. Below are some design tips. I'd love to hear either problems or solutions you're encountered using landscapes for seniors. I'm also including a link to an infographic. https://bit.ly/3t0GEh2


Use bright colors. As people age their eyesight deteriorates, generally bright colors like red and orange are easier for them to see.


Use old fashioned plants. Older people enjoy seeing plants that are reminiscent of their past. Consider favorites such as rose, peonies, black-eyed susans, and hollyhocks.


Engage the senses. Engaging the senses allows a person to more fully enjoy the present experience and reduces outside stress and anxiety. Smell is a powerful sense that will invoke memories. Using the elements is another way to engage the senses. Wind often is an overlooked element in the landscape. Consider adding wind chimes, wind spinners, or ornamental grasses that rustle to bring awareness to the element of wind.


Encourage wildlife. Bird watching is a gratifying activity for seniors. Design the landscape to attract wildlife such as birds, butterflies, and the very entertaining squirrels.


Shade is often more important with seniors.


Smooth paths with no steps and a 2% or less slope is ideal.


Creating an edge or curb is helpful for those using wheelchairs or walkers.


Curved paths are often more soothing and easier to navigate with wheelchairs and walkers.


Seating. Provide sturdy seating with backs and arms, wood is usually an ideal material. Seating placed at intervals of no more than 25' apart will provide important resting areas for seniors.


Passive garden. Don't underestimate the views from windows into the garden for those who are not able to go outside.

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