Gardening is my happy place. Give me a plot of dirt, my trowel, and some little seedlings, and I am as happy as a tick on a blue hound! And though working in the garden is emotionally uplifting, as I age it’s getting a little harder physically. My back gets cramped up. My knees creak. My hands don’t grip the rake quite as firmly, and the sun seems to heat me a lot faster. I refuse to give up my passion, so I’ve learned just to adjust!
There are, thankfully, a plethora of adaptive ideas to embrace that make gardening easier for those of us in the advancing age brackets. Adaptive tools and equipment, with larger grips, lighter weight materials, and easier designs, can be found in every garden center and through online sources such as Amazon. If purchasing new tools is not in your budget, use foam, tape and plastic tubing to modify your existing tools for a better grip. A gardening stool, or a gardening table and chair, are mandatory if the days of kneeling are behind you.
Experimenting with vertical gardens or elevated garden beds is a great way to expand your gardening fun. Wall and trellis spaces are just waiting for your green thumb to create a living wall. Raised beds are a perfect place to garden while avoiding the bending and stooping stress on your back and knees.
A huge gardening umbrella, beach umbrella or awning are useful for keeping the sun off your back. Find one with a built-in fan to help even more in the summer’s heat.
Gardening is one of the greatest pleasures in life. And one, with a few adjustments we will continue to enjoy for many years to come!