The Leopoldo Urban Vegetable Garden becomes a Therapeutic Tool
Image by Leopoldo
For many years now (read our first article about Leopoldo in 2005), this Catalan design is appearing in more and more homes, restaurants, galleries and other spaces in need of green and locally grown food. It changed in size and colour, and another interesting aspect of the Leopoldo Urban Vegetable Garden is its use in hospitals. The flat-pack recyclable steel structure with its black recycled planters is good looking in any space and makes gardening easy and fun all year round.Over the last years, the people behind Leopoldo have done many workshops in hospitals and clinics, and they have archived quite a lot. Gardening, so they say, helped the patients build up self-esteem, team spirit and taught them a fair bit of horticulture. Social abilities improved in those people involved in the gardening workshops. The Leopoldo makes it easy to set up gardens in many spaces, since it can be used indoor and outdoors, and fits even in narrow corridors. A big advantage is that the structure can be wheeled around and the planters are hanging higher than the floor. Much less bending down results in much less backache.
Image by Leopoldo
Workshops are set up together with the clinic's teachers, mentors and residence in order to create a therapeutically horticultural experience for mentally ill patients. Once the workshop participants learn how to care for the gardens, they can be given more and more responsibilities over their vegetable patch. Over the months, new species are planted and the workshop participants learn to observe, memorise, ask questions, experiment with the plants and take reasonability. Plants need to be watered, and little by little, a daily routine is set up that gives patients confidence and a sense of belonging and participation. The result of the hard work is enjoyed through cooking and herbal medicine sessions, and of course, planting new herbs and vegetables.