Journal of Therapeutic Horticulture 12 - 2001


A Horticultural Therapy Program for Brain Injury Patients with Neurobehavioral Disorders
Gregory J. Murrey, Ann Wedel and Jeff Dirks

Persons who have sustained severe traumatic brain injury (TBI) often present with significant deficits in executive functioning with resulting neurobehavioral disorders. To address the special neurobehavioral needs of this unique population, staff at the Minnesota Neurorehabilitation Hospital have developed a comprehensive horticultural therapy program as part of their holistic therapeutic milieu. The primary horticultural therapy goals for the TBI patient include: 1) reduction of agitation levels and aggressive behaviors: 2) increase in self-initiation of meaningful activities: 3) facilitation of multidisciplinary rehabilitation therapies within a natural therapeutic setting, and: 4) development of prevocational and vocational skills. This article outlines various aspects of the hospital inpatient. Rehabilitation Service's horticultural therapy program and how neurobehavioral goals and issues are addressed by all rehabilitation staff within the horticultural therapy program.

Effectiveness of Horticultural Therapy Activities in a Psychiatric Hospital
Karen Denise Sellers

Given that participation in a horticultural thearpy program provides various therapeutic benefits in the treatment of clients, the effectiveness of different types of activities must also be considered. This study focuses on four distinct adult horticultural therapy programs at Larned State Hospital, a state psychiatric facility in Kansas. This investigation presents and evaluates data summaries to determine the individual and composite effectiveness of these four kinds of activities in meeting treatment objectives.

The Basic Instruction in Gardening Skills Program: Horticultural Therapy and Adult Special Education
David Greig

Centered in a heated greenhouse and nestled in a garden setting with mature Douglas Fir and Garry Oak trees, the Basic Instruction Gardening Skills (BIGS) Program began six years ago as the second vocational program of the Adult Special Education Department at Camosun College in Victoria, British Columbia. The program's goal is to train adults with cognitive disabilities for entry-level employment in the horticultural industry. The program uses the principles of adult education as its tenets and is situated under the vocational training model in horticultural therapy. The BIGS program provides an opportunity for adults with special needs to pursue vocational training in horticultural skills in a post-secondary educational environment. The intent of this article is to present and promote discussion about some of the variable required to run a horticulture program for adult students with special needs in a college setting.

A Review: Theories of Restorative Environments
Ke-Tsung Han, Ph.D.

There are two major theories explaining the healing influences of environments on human beings. One theory is developed by the Kaplans and the other is developed by Ulrich. Both of the hypothesize that restorative environments are settings where recovery is associated with reduction of stress and that the benefits of contact with landscapes include a wide range of positive responses, such as preference, and/or reactions related to functioning and well-being. Both theories are based on an evolutionary perspective and share some similarities and differences. This article provides a summary of these two theories of restorative environments, their common and differing points, and a framework of integrating both the Kaplan and Ulrich's theories.

Horticultural Therapy and Post Traumatic Stress Recovery
Mitchell Hewson, HTM

This paper explores the use of horticulture as a therapeutic medium for traumatic stress. The horticultural therapy program at Homewood Health Centre is the only inpatient program in Canada that offers psychotherapy, education, and skill development for trauma survivors so that they may increase constructive coping methods in their daily lives. The therapeutic environment of the conservatory and gardens provides a safe sanctuary to assist clients in their therapeutic journey.

Books of Interest for Horticultural Therapy
Laurel Haycock, Ph.D.

A rich variety of books are available to guide and support work in horticultural therapy. Two quite different and intriguing books are reviewed here, both of which are likely to be of value to horticultural therapists and others in the field.