The Giving Garden LTC Program

Nourishing lives by making food gardens accessible for everyone.

Our Story

The Giving Garden LTC Program works to provide long term care residents an opportunity to nurture their community, their home, and their life by growing food of their own and through sharing with others by donating nutritiously dense food to their local community.

This project was founded by Maria Biasutti, RD in 2018 and piloted in a long term care home (LTC) in Burlington, Onatario. The pilot is a sustained program in the home and is approaching Year 3. Maria wanted to change the conventional image of what LTC homes are portrayed as. Through The Giving Garden LTC Program, Maria advocates for residents to have a place where they can continue growing their full life.

Hand holding seeds

Potential Outcomes For Your Garden

  • Grow as much as 45 plant varieties (vegetables and flowers) or more
  • Harvest enough produce to provide residents with fresh vegetables in meals
  • Donate homegrown seasonal produce to support your community
  • Utilize organic and environmentally sustainable growing practices
  • Provide outdoor activity for LTC residents and a place of well-being for everyone
Based on our pilot home.

Sow Seeds

Grow Food

Harvest

Share

Our Goals

  • Enhance the quality of life of LTC residents by cultivating purpose, dignity and pride in what they grow and share from the garden
  • Improve the nutritional status and food security of LTC residents
  • Promote positive culture change in LTC homes amongst staff
  • Offer equitable access to nutritionally dense food for all
  • Be an initiative leader in environmental accountability in the midst of climate change

Garden Therapy

The Giving Garden LTC Program is a form of Horticulture therapy that can potentially reduce the occurrence of depression that is associated with social isolation and dementia, and positively affect nutritional status and food security.

Delicious Food

It can’t get more local than the residents’ own backyard! With this in mind, residents have more access to different and new varieties of fresh produce. The residents are are given an opportunity to try new items – whether that is through their activities in their garden or enhancing the quality of their meals!

 

Design Philosophy

Permaculture

Permaculture promotes sustainable growing practices that require the least amount of labour with the most wonderful, purposeful results. Using this philosophy, we can design a beautiful low-maintenance food garden that works with nature and your schedule.

Sustainability Through Education

Caring for a garden can be rewarding and therapeutic. Having the knowledge to properly care for a garden can make the experience even better. A large part of the service we offer is the education of a home’s staff and volunteers. This ensures prolonged sustainability for your garden by creating a positive gardening environment built on knowledge.

Accessible Garden Beds

Our custom made garden beds are adaptable to your environment and accessible to residents with low mobility. Each bed is designed and are offered at a competitive price compared to other commercial offerings.

If these specific garden beds aren’t a good fit for your home or budget then we will work with you to find a solution that fits your LTC home’s gardening needs. Our main goal is always to give you and your LTC home the opportunity to achieve The Giving Garden the way you envision it.

How The Giving Garden Program Works

 

Initial Setup

  • Create a home-specific layout and design to meet your home’s needs
  • Create customized accessible garden beds suitable for your residents

Monthly Subscription Service

  • Provide weekly garden maintenance (ie. seeds inventory, soil health, seed starting, composting, raised bed maintenance, pest control etc)
  • Collaborate with home to build sustainability and accomplish the five goals of the program
  • Help build the home’s return on investment

Additional Support

  • Recruit and train volunteers
  • Plan, budget and schedule for the annual garden
  • Collaborate with community stakeholders
  • Develop staff and volunteer training
  • Source & procure garden equipment and supplies
Happy person in garden

Pricing Information

For pricing and more information, please reach out to us.