Stressed? Take a P.I.L.L. Part 2

As we learned in Part 1, horticulture has provided a calming effect for many years to many people. This has given rise to the concept of horticultural therapy (aka P.I.L.L. or Positive Influenced Landscape Living). Now in Part 2 we will discuss the benefits and delivery of Therapeutic Horticulture.

### Benefits:

Therapeutic Horticulture benefits people emotionally, physically, socially and spiritually. Just walking into a garden has been shown to reduce people’s stress, calms them and recharges their minds. A local psychiatric hospital in Guelph, Ontario – [Homewood Health Centre](http://homewood.org/) – utilizes many horticultural techniques. Its 47-acre property has various forested ares with walking paths, gardens, a labyrinth and many open areas.

Therapeutic Horticulture also can challenge your strength and balance, promote hand-eye coordination, improve a person’s range of movement and endurance when active in the garden.

Gardens invite socialization by creating interaction with others performing similar activities, promoting cooperation within communities. Condominiums and retirement homes can create garden groups and provide an opportunity to connect with others within their community, reducing feelings of isolation or exclusion.

Benefits also include just feeling better for being outside, being in touch with nature and in the great outdoors.

### Delivery:

Therapeutic benefits occur when people are exposed to plants and when they take part in planning, planting, growing and caring for plants. For those that live in complexes that do not have outdoor space, there are still exciting ways of creating areas of tranquility and creating a community of health and wellness. Imagine a wall in your highrise foyer filled with cascading plants purifying the air and filling the room with botanical energy. Living walls have long been a popular feature in indoor landscape installations. (See previous blog post on living walls [here](http://gelderman.wwwwww.ca/blog/21/living-walls-inspire-learning).)

Community gardens vary widely throughout the world and are developed to provide a place for unit owners or residents to grow food and ornamental crops and to enjoy the relaxation and educational benefits. These gardens also include ‘healing gardens’ which are designed as a retreat or help the user gain a sense of well being. Many are accessible to everyone whatever their ability.

### Conclusion:

The setting for horticultural therapy (aka P.I.L.L.) does not have to be elaborate or complex; a simple garden in your backyard or even plant boxes can be therapeutic. A garden is a great place to share the beautiful outdoors with your family and friends while reaping the many health benefits ti has to offer.

Part I of Stressed? Take a P.I.L.L. can be found [here.](http://gelderman.wwwwww.ca/blog/22/stressed-take-a-p-i-l-l-part-1)