PUBLISHED ARTICLES

Horticultural Therapy Week Celebrated at Adult Day Center

Somerset County Freeholder Patricia Walsh, left, joins Laura DePrado, Sen. Kip Bateman and clients of the Adult Day Center of Somerset County in Bridgewater for a Horticultural Therapy Week celebration. The ADC has been working with Laura DePrado and Final Touch Plantscaping for the past four years. Horticulture therapy benefits the physical, emotional and social welfare of ADC clients. According to the American Horticultural Therapy Association, “HT techniques are employed to assist participants to learn new skills or regain those that are lost. HT helps improve memory, cognitive abilities, task initiation, language skills, and socialization. In physical rehabilitation, HT can help strengthen muscles and improve coordination, balance, and endurance. In vocational HT settings, people learn to work independently, problem solve, and follow directions.” The Board of Freeholders issued a Horticultural Therapy Week proclamation for March 18-24.

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Horticultural Therapy Week in NJ Celebrated at Alstede Farms​

Media Release
March 22, 2018

 
Contact Laura DePrado
908-872-8387
 

( Chester NJ) – Horticultural Therapy Week in New Jersey celebrated at Alstede Farms in Morris County on Tuesday March 20. Recognizing the benefits of the people-plant connection were New Jersey Secretary of Agriculture Douglas Fisher, Horticultural Therapist Laura DePrado, Barbara Alstede of Alstede Farms and team members, along with community leaders. 

Secretary Fisher presented Proclamation from Governor Phil ip Murphy noting “The therapeutic benefits of a garden environment to improve the quality of life of program participants, and the social, vocational and therapeutic programs that enable individuals to experience independence and achievement, increasing their sense of dignity as they increase their ability to function in various settings, such as hospitals, rehabilitation facilities, and senior centers.” (more…)

Horticultural Therapy Week Blooming March 18 to 24

Horticultural therapy is a vehicle to meet wide-ranging goals, and it successfully enables and empowers individuals to achieve their maximum independence in settings such as mental health, rehabilitation facilities, hospitals including veterans, adult daycare, vocational schools, nursing homes, substance abuse rehabilitation, developmentally disabled day programs and group homes, day and residential housing for adults with autism, community and county parks, gardens and arboreta. (Photo: ~Courtesy of Laura DePrado)

It’s Horticultural Therapy Week in the Garden State to coincide with the Vernal Equinox and the beginning of spring. 

Since 2016, New Jersey has been the only state to designate the third full week in March as Horticultural Therapy Week to increase public awareness and the importance of horticultural therapy in improving the quality of life for all and increasing opportunities for each individual to experience the endless benefits of the people-plant connection.   (more…)

Freeholders Recognize Horticultural Therapy Week

Evan Wadle, representing NJ Rep. Leonard Lance (R-7th) presented a Congressional Citation to Laura DePrado for an article she wrote published in the Journal of Therapeutic Horticulture. Credits: Courtesy Somerset County Freeholders

SOMERVILLE, NJ – The Somerset County Freeholders recognized New Jersey Horticultural Therapy Week at its March 13th meeting, presenting a proclamation to Branchburg resident and horticultural therapist Laura DePrado.

A proclamation in recognition of a story she wrote that was published in the Journal of Therapeutic Horticulture was also presented by Eric Wadle, a representative of New Jersey Rep. Leonard Lance, R-7th. (more…)

Celebrating Horticultural Therapy Week March 18th to 24th

Brother International Corporation Bridgewater employees celebrated Horticultural Therapy Week early as they explored wellness alternatives in a Lunch-n-Learn Workshop February 28th as they learned about the use of plants for social, physical and psychological well-being through Horticultural Therapy.  Participants connected and engaged with plant materials while creating hands on projects in purpose and meaning.  The workshop was guided by Horticultural Therapist Laura DePrado of Final Touch Plantscaping, LLC

“What a great event for our Employees!  It was uniquely different yet so inspiring, calming and joyful!”

– Doriana Allyn, Sr. Manager Employee Events and Initiatives –

Put a little love in your heart with horticulture therapy

This month’s Horticultural Therapy activity theme is “Put a Little Love in Your Heart,” bouquets and heart containers designed for all ages and abilities.
(Photo: ~Courtesy of Laura DePrado)

February offers fun in anticipation of the groundhog and whether he will see his shadow, and whether winter will continue for six more weeks, or spring will arrive early. Next, Valentine’s Day takes over where the groundhog left off, and hearts and flowers arrive. 

Monthly calendar events, celebrations and holidays, along with plant materials associated with the seasons, are used in horticultural therapy activities and programs.  

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National Gardening Bureau Offers Grants For 2018

Monarch School of New England in New Hampshire (MSNE) is a first-place grant winner of the National Gardening Bureau Therapeutic Garden Grant. MSNE is a unique, comprehensive, private, nonprofit, year-round, specialized, day school for students, ages 5 to 21, with severe physical, intellectual, emotional, medical and developmental disabilities.
(Photo: ~Courtesy of National Gardening Bureau)

In its commitment to promote gardening to gardeners and non-gardeners alike, the National Gardening Bureau (NGB) has grant awards available in 2018. A nonprofit organization, the NGB exists to educate, inspire and motivate people to increase the use of plants in homes, gardens and workplaces by being the marketing arm of the gardening industry.

NGB members are experts in the field of horticulture and information comes directly from these sources.

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Winter plants a warm holiday welcome in horticultural therapy


(Photo: ~Courtesy of Laura DePrado)

The landscape is frozen in time as winter blankets trees, shrubs, perennials asleep until next spring. The garden is all but forgotten, but some plants are truly at their best this time of year with colorful foliage, and stems that make great materials for horticultural activities and learning in programs of horticultural therapy in the Garden State.

Horticultural therapy is the process of using plants as tools for rehabilitation of an individual or group through activities and projects that are guided by a horticultural therapist in purpose and meaning for the participants.

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After-School Garden Club is Growing Success

In The Garden Club, children engage in hands-on activities with purpose and meaning, learn about cycles of nature, seasonal rhythms, and feel safe to respond to an abundant supply of plant materials and life stages from seed to harvest, and from birth to maturity. (Photo: ~Courtesy of Laura DePrado)

Horticultural Therapy provides an opportunity for children to work cooperatively with other children while learning new skills and new information. Horticulture, the growing of plants, is also an activity where children can learn and grow. 

Specifically designed horticultural activities promote healthy interactions and developmental growth in a child and creates a fun, engaging, nonjudgmental environment where both children and plants thrive and bloom.  (more…)

Freeholders Congratulate Horticultural Therapist on Published Article

Laura DePrado, right, accepts a 2016 Horticultural Therapy Week proclamation from then-Freeholder Director Pat Walsh.

The Somerset County Board of Chosen Freeholders congratulates horticultural therapist Laura DePrado of Branchburg on her recent article in the American Horticultural Therapy Association’s Journal of Therapeutic Horticulture.

“Raising Awareness of Horticultural Therapy with the Seed of ‘National Horticultural Therapy Week’ and Roots of New Jersey Agriculture” appears in the journal’s fall issue.

The article recounts her successful efforts, with the help of state Sen. Kip Bateman and former Assemblywoman Donna Simon, to make New Jersey the first state in the nation to celebrate Horticultural Therapy Week during the third week in March, starting in 2016. Gov. Chris Christie signed the joint legislative resolution into law in May 2015.

The New Jersey Senate and Assembly resolutions, along with proclamations from Rep. Leonard Lance and from the Board of Freeholders, were presented at a freeholders’ meeting in February 2017. (more…)