MALDEN, MA – Like many of us who are spending a bit more time at home these days, residents of Forestdale Park Senior Living in Malden are enjoying time in their community’s garden, taking advantage of the warm spring weather.
The community’s garden, which consists of four large raised beds and a couple of potted plants, was the go-to spot for residents to meet and mingle in the summer and fall months, and with spring planting season just around the corner, the programming team at Forestdale didn’t want to see residents miss out on one of their favorite activities. Instead, staff have worked with the community’s resident-run Garden Club to create new ways for residents to participate in spring gardening activities while maintaining safe physical distancing. These measures include having residents work on garden beds one person at a time and sanitizing equipment after each use.
Earlier this month, residents cleaned out the raised garden beds to prepare them for the warmer weather. The community has also started growing small plants from seeds in homemade indoor greenhouses, to keep them warm and healthy until they can be transplanted outside.
Watching their newest crop of beans, cucumbers, and three varieties of tomatoes sprout has been a source of pride for members of the Garden Club, and they are looking forward to planting them outside as soon as it’s warm enough. Any vegetables or herbs that grow in the garden are used by residents in their kitchens or by the community’s chef as part of the community’s Brain Healthy Cooking Program. Additionally, the community’s Culinary Club uses the harvest to create healthy recipes. For Forestdale Park, it’s a fun way for the community to experience the joys of gardening, cooking and togetherness.