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Raised Bed Gardening

Raised bed gardening has many benefits including limiting bending and kneeling while tending to plants, adding fresh food to the family table, fresh air and social engagement. Social connection helps combat the isolation many older adults experience. When planning a raised garden, consider client mobility and use cases, as well as the depth and width requirements for any specific plants. Beyond the health and social benefits, garden elements are also a great way to add vibrancy and color, especially in designs with minimalist material palettes.

Cost
$$ $$
Difficulty
Low

Cost and difficulty are highly dependent on material choices and garden height.

How-to tip

Raised bed gardening can be accomplished with landscaping timbers (be careful about using treated wood, which may leach into the soil), or many types of masonry: bricks, concrete blocks and stone. Incorporating reclaimed lumber or masonry adds visual character while also providing a sustainable (and potentially more affordable) solution. Raising the bed height will generally require more structural considerations and / or stronger materials due to increased pressure from retaining the soil.

Principles Equitable Use The design is useful and marketable to people with diverse abilities. Flexibility in Use The design accommodates a wide range of individual preferences and abilities. Low Physical Effort The design can be used efficiently and comfortably and with a minimum of fatigue. Size and Space for Approach and Use Appropriate size and space is provided for approach, reach, manipulation, and use regardless of user’s body size, posture, or mobility.

Analytics Affordability Home features that can’t be afforded might as well not exist. And home features that require infrequent replacement and low maintenance over time save a family’s energy and money. Renovation costs of these homes can be far lower than standard homes due to minimized construction over time. Interaction We now recognize how beneficial interaction with neighbors is for everyone. Gone are the days when retreating behind closed doors is a good idea. Home and landscape designs that bring household members outside create the positive informal interactions that are so important in our daily lives. Sustainability This is often considered environmental ecology or the preservations and enhancement of the natural world as much as possible. Universal design provides a matching set of values: social ecology, which allows the full integration of al individuals with family and community life. A sustainable approach uses less building materials and less waste because of a diminished amount of removed and demolished sections of the home. Projects also enhance sustainability because potential renovations are eliminated or reduced such as by adding or subtracting interior wall panels and modules instead of needing major rebuilding and renovations.