Residents at Yew Tree Lodge have been busy setting up their own vegetable patch as part of their wellbeing initiatives during the summer months. The home benefits from a large private garden, ideal for running outdoor activities such as gardening. Over the past eight weeks, the staff team have worked with residents to transform the space into a horticultural paradise. They’re delighted with the success of their produce and have grown a number of crops, including courgettes, spring onions, chives, green beans, carrots, and sunflowers.
The service is one of Priory Adult Care’s Specialist Residential Services, supporting individuals with mental health needs in a residential setting. Located in Reading, Yew Tree Lodge supports individuals to achieve greater wellbeing, using the Recovery Star approach to set personal and measurable goals for their rehabilitation.
Yew Tree Lodge promotes Priory Adult Care’s communication strategy, "Our Voice." This scheme encourages individuals to voice their views about the support they receive, within an informal meeting setting. During these meetings, residents and staff discussed and jointly agreed on a plan to use the spacious and calming garden to start to grow their own vegetables.
The enthusiastic amateur gardeners have helped with planting and sourcing sticks to build support systems for the climbing plants. They’ve also worked hard to tend to the vegetable patch on a daily basis, ensuring the crops are well watered during these balmy days.
In response to the success of their crops, the team plan to work with residents to plant more herbs in the coming weeks. Registered Manager Lekh Limbu notes that the residents will be making good use of their harvest, saying: “We are planning to use the vegetables during joint healthy cooking activities with everybody here in the near future.”
In addition, residents at Yew Tree Lodge can gain rewards for participating in tasks such as watering plants in the garden. Staff have set up a weekly reward board for those involved in activities, where they can gain prizes ranging from small treats at home to day trips of their choice, such as to the zoo or theatre.
One resident commented, “I don’t mind watering the plants, it’s good to volunteer and help out.” Other residents are also keen to become more involved in the scheme, with one stating that “I like the plants growing in the garden, I will start watering the plants.”
With the vegetable patch and flower pots all in full bloom, residents will be celebrating the fruits of their labour with a summer barbecue next week.
For more information on the specialist services Priory Adult Care can offer, please call the enquiries and referrals team on 0808 159 3137 or click here to make an enquiry.