Gardening is good for you — and plant a little lavender, too

Lavender is a known healing plant dating back thousands of years.
(Photo: ~Courtesy of Laura DePrado)

Laura Deprado uses Gardening for Therapy to help people across New Jersey. Laura is a Horticultural Therapist, and her article “Gardening is good for you — and plant a little lavender, too” was recently featured in

Gardening is an essential part of life. People realized from the dawn of modern man thousands of years ago that plants and gardens and gardening and growing have countless benefits to medicinal application. 


Aromatherapy in ancient Egypt has linked to today’s booming alternative medicine practices

World-renowned Therapist Mahmoud Saied of Essence of Life Al Fayed showing Horticultural Therapist Laura DePrado, President of Final Touch Plantscaping, LLC, some of many essential oils used for Aromatherapy. The great Manufacturer of perfumes, Oil of Flowers and Blends, exports 80 percent of its pure oil worldwide.
(Photo: ~Courtesy of Laura DePrado)

Laura Deprado uses Horticulture for Therapy to help people across New Jersey. Her article “Aromatherapy in ancient Egypt has linked to today’s booming alternative medicine practices” was recently featured in  

In 2016, the global aromatherapy market size was valued at $1.07 billion, according to an industry analysis report for 2014 to 2025 published by Grand View Research. And this lucrative growth shows no sign of stopping.  (more…)

Congratulations letter from Thomas H. Kean, Jr – New Jersey Senate

Dear Ms, DePrado

Congratulations on being recognized as a Top 25 Leading Women Brand Builder by the Leading Women Entrepreneurs and Business Owners, This is extraordinary honor which acknowledges the excellence that each one of you demonstrates within your respective industries.

Being selected out of many nominations truly demonstrates how much of an inspiration you are to enterprising women both within and outside your industry. Your accomplishments reflect the enormous impact women leaders are making on New Jersey. It is an honor for me to recognize role models like you for all that you have done for both women and your communities.

Once again, congratulations on this great honor, I wish you all the best of luck in whatever your future holds.

Thomas H. Kean, Jr 
New Jersey Senate 

Where A Flower Blooms, Hope Lives For Senior

Oldwick senior Lorraine Galbraith and Horticultural Therapist, Laura DePrado, have planted together since May 2013.
(Photo: ~Courtesy of Laura DePrado)

Five years ago this month, I was connected to an isolated senior, Lorraine Galbraith, in a wheelchair, frail, living at home in Hunterdon County, and living day to day with no family in New Jersey, or friends. 

Blinds were closed. Her plants (which once thrived through the hands of her care), were all dead due to overwatering by caregivers and lack of sun. She trusted no one. She did not go outside. She did not speak and she suffered with depression.  (more…)

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.


Horticultural Therapy Week in NJ Celebrated at Alstede Farms​

Media Release
March 22, 2018

Contact Laura DePrado

( 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.