Benefits of Nature in Memory Care

By 2050, it is projected that 16 million people will be living with dementia (Alzheimer’s Association, 2016), with nearly 90% of these individuals experiencing emotional and behavioral disturbances during the disease process (Cohen-Mansfield, 2008; Kales, Gitlin, & Lyketsos, 2014). These emotions and associated behaviors create great stress for individuals experiencing them and their caregivers (Kales, Gitlin, & Lyketsos, 2014). 

Mistake #1 - Shear Madness

Why Plants Should Fear the Shear

So, here we are!  The #1 most notorious and costly mistake in landscape maintenance is shearing plants in the landscape.  The overuse and misuse of shearing is arguably one of the most common forms of landscape “mismanagement.”  While there are a few plants that tolerate shearing (small leaf Boxwoods, Japanese Yew, etc.) most species that are sheared have received premature death sentences.   By far shearing is the most prevalent maintenance mistake and is usually the sign of an un-trained and un-knowledgeable maintenance staff.  Not only are gas shears bad for plants, their pollution-generating two-cycle engines are bad for the environment.

Mistake #2 – Right Plant Wrong Place

The Real Story About Jack’s Magic Beans and Why You Don’t Plant Them in a Window Box

No plant is a bad plant.  Some plants are simply the wrong plant in the wrong place.  So, unless you want a plant next to your house that will grow up to the sky the way Jack’s Magic Beans did, you’ll want to avoid Mistake #2 – “Wrong/Plant Wrong Place.”  We see it all the time when we audit a corporate campus or senior living community.  Plants that are genetically pre-disposed to grow 20-feet tall and 15-feet wide growing in a small planting area next to a building or adjacent to a busy sidewalk.  It always comes down to one of two options: 1) trim it, or 2) move it. 

Mistake #3 – Chlorosis Diagnosis

 Why Isn't My Garden Green?

Close your eyes and imagine that you’re sitting in your lush green garden.  It’s a shady place for respite and refreshment that is cool, inviting and a relaxing escape.  As you sit in this little slice of Eden, you hear the birds in the trees and see butterflies flutter across blossoms of various flowering shrubs and groundcovers.  The many foliar textures in the garden have only one thing in common – they’re all various shades of green. 

Mistake #4 – What Kind of Tree is That?

Think Twice, Prune Once 

Mistake #5 – No, Plant Foliage is Not Supposed to Look Like Swiss Cheese

Those Pesky Pests

As a boy I grew up in the orange groves of Southern California (yes indeed, a long time ago there were actually orange trees in Orange County, California).  Back then my buddies and I would spend every waking hour outside engaged in many wonderful adventures…and I loved bugs.  I loved them all.  Wooley looking bugs, colorful caterpillars, funny little ‘Pill Bugs’ (aka Rollie Pollie) that would roll into a ball at the slightest touch, ‘June Bugs’ in the summer, stink bugs, lady bugs.  You name it, I loved it.

Mistake # 6 –The Grass Isn't Always Greener

Don’t Look Now but Your Grass is Stressed Out 

What’s not to like about a lush green lawn?  While lawns help create a serene and beautiful landscape, turf grass provides a great deal more than a lush outdoor carpet for your property.  According to Landscape Ontario, turf grass is North America's largest agricultural crop.  Because it is so commonplace in the landscape, it is easy to overlook the many benefits of turf.  

Mistake # 7 – Baby, It's Cold Outside!

Why We Shouldn’t Waste Money on Fertilizer in the Winter Months 

As most seniors know, living in Florida is certainly pleasant; especially during the winter months.  The temperatures are mild and the humidity is low…a wonderful respite from the hot humid months of summer.  That being said however, I hear my friends from the north lament there simply aren’t perceptible seasonal changes in

The Shameful 7 – Notorious & Costly Mistakes in Landscape Maintenance

Controlling Costs for your Senior Living Campus Landscapes

In the early 1970’s, the Fram Corporation became known for its marketing slogan, "You can pay me now, or pay me later", which was uttered in its television commercials by an auto mechanic, who explains to his customer that he can either pay a small sum now for the replacement of oil and filter or a far larger sum later for the replacement of the vehicle's engine. 

Beauty Matters

For Senior Living (and College Campuses) – Beauty Matters! 

Our friends at CCRC LIfeCast delved into the matter of Predicting Happiness in a senior living community.  In the article, they draw what I believe to be an accurate parallel between the experience of moving into a senior living community and the initial adjustment that college freshmen face when transitioning from high school.  Both involve:

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