The understanding of holistic health (Def.: characterized by comprehension of the parts of something as intimately interconnected and explicable only by reference to the whole), led to my idea of integrating three different, usually disconnected systems into one garden design.
This project focuses on education (resiliency, communication, nutrition, integrated health techniques, medicinal herbs), skill-based learning (self-care, physical activity, cooking, farming, animal husbandry), and community building (relationships, social relationships/integration).
The term “Care-Farming” was born in England and is explained on the care-farming website as the therapeutic use of farming practices. Exactly what I have in mind – although, I would like to take it several steps further. For this idea, I integrated three areas of importance:
- Community Space: social gatherings, formal & informal functions, educational workshops/seminars, return sense of belonging
- Production Area: grow vegetables/herbs/flowers, explore farming techniques, crop/pest-management, communal garden management
- Sanctuary Garden: secluded, sense of security & control, designed for restoration & relaxation, alternative movement courses (Yoga, Tai Chi, or Qigong), solitude practices, meditative walking, medicinal herb spiral
Alexandra presented on this topic at the 23. Statewide Undergrad Research Conference at the University of Massachusetts in April 2017. Her problem-solving approach & design of an integrative healing garden is visible on her poster presentation below:
My research regarding this project is currently ongoing. I am writing a proposal to have such gardens implemented. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact me.