Dementia Friendly Garden Activities

    Gardening the Dementia Friendly Way Workshop

    May 2018


    More info coming soon!

    Bloom Dementia Friendly Garden 2017

    Newtown Saunders, TrinityHaus and Sonas apc are the dynamic team behind the Bloom Dementia Friendly Garden (DFG).  The design is led by Tom Grey, a Research Fellow at TrinityHaus, Trinity College Dublin, who with his architectural background, has undertaken many age-friendly and dementia-friendly design projects.

    Dementia can bring difficulties with short-term memory, comprehension, orientation, spatial awareness, visual perception and mobility. These difficulties are gently accommodated in the Bloom Dementia Friendly Garden, where a clever use of layout, colour, planting and customised garden fittings creates an attractive, safe and therapeutic outdoor space. It is designed to tap into a person’s retained skills, abilities, interests and memories.

    • Plants from the person’s youth – here daisies, lupins, lavender and dianthus – trigger memories and facilitate reminiscence
    • Scented flowers, flowing water and birdsong stimulate the senses
    • Zoning and colours provide visual cues, helping with orientation and way-finding
    • The accessible raised planter, mini glasshouse & tool shed, and vertical planter give easy access to gardening activities and engagement with nature

    The journey to Bloom began in 2013 when Clive Jones of Newtown Saunders Ltd (landscaping company), supported by Enterprise Ireland (EI), funded TrinityHaus to undertake a research project into dementia friendly gardens. Sinead Grennan and Noreen Keane, representing Sonas apc, came on board in 2015, and the research results were piloted. Newtown Saunders Ltd, again supported by EI, funded a DFG design service for four centres, and was inundated with applications. A road trip around Ireland ensued as the team worked with the winning centres in Leitrim, Limerick, Cork and Dublin to collaboratively design therapeutic gardens for residents, relatives and staff to enjoy.

    The Bloom Dementia Friendly Garden is proudly sponsored by TLC Nursing Home Group

    Also supported by Understand Together, the national dementia support, awareness and information campaign, led by the HSE, with the Alzheimer’s Society of Ireland and Genio