Adaptive Garderning After a Stroke

Rebecca Dutton

All anti-depressants do not just come in a pill so I am glad I found a way to garden after my stroke.  However, each year I forget the tricks I discovered so I took photos and described them.

At first I pulled plants out of their containers one-handed.  The moist dirt balls broke apart.  I learned to let the plants dry out a little.  The photo shows a child size spade I slide down the sides of each container to loosen the roots.  

I use a big plastic pot that is lighter than clay.  After I partially fill the pot, I put a ring on top of the dirt.  I made this ring out of a disposable plastic cutting board.  The ring keeps plants away from the rim and gives me something to lean the 1st row of plants against.  A small cup helps me fill the narrow space between the ring and the edge of the pot.  I make sure the plants are touching each other so they grow into a thick ball that prevents water evaporation.  I drop fistfuls of dirt in the small spaces between the plants.  Then I pull out the ring.

I use my hemiplegic (paralyzed) hand to hold the watering can still so it will not tip over as I fill it with the hose.  I use the garden hose to wash off the dirt I have spilled on my concrete patio. 
I lower the pot onto a bench and carefully slide it next to the chair I sit in to watch the sunset and drink a cup of coffee.  I also get to enjoy these beautiful flowers every time I come home.                                                                                                                      P.S. Rebecca you only need four 4-packs.