In addition to technological, medical, and psychological advances in research, there has been a resurgence in natural therapies and treatments. Treating the body and mind holistically provides a connectedness with the self, but a major component for many in healing is a connectedness with the environment and creating an environment that facilitates the healing process. Gardening is one way of connecting the mind and body to the environment and the spirit, and including the five senses into the garden provides a bridge for these connections.
A multisensory garden incorporates sight, sound, smell, taste, and touch. Sight is the most obvious sensory experience of a garden, but there are many other senses engaged in the experience of a garden. Enriching a garden to engage each sense removes sterility in life and creates a connection between the brain and the body.
This Instructable describes ways of incorporating the senses into the garden for a holistic experience that goes beyond landscape design. This Instructable does not presume to show how the garden should be used for specific psychological or spiritual healing. The gardener should tailor the garden to meet individual and personal needs and create a conscientious space filled with meaning and life experience.
This Instructable also includes a few tips and tricks to make gardening easier. While the labor of gardening certainly adds to the experience of a garden and is frequently gratifying, gardening is not always easy. It can be tiring, painful, and difficult, but there are places to make the work easier. When you can catch a few breaks and work smarter, not harder, you have more time to spend enjoying what you've created. Hopefully, there's at least one tip that you didn't know already.
Remember Wildlife in the Garden
Gardening Tips and Tricks (Steps 7-22)
Tip 1: Overwinter in Jars
Tip 2: Paint Garden Tools
Tip 3: Take Cuttings for Overwintering
Tip 4: Prevent Plant Tag Fading
Tip 5: Stake Graptopetalum and Other Succulents
Tip 6: Clean Tools with Sand and Oil
Tip 7: Mulch Potted Plants
Tip 8: Make Custom Tree Hangers
Tip 9: Create a Landscaping Cheat Sheet
Tip 10: Share Cuttings with Neighbors, Friends, and Family
Tip 11: Plant after Putting down Weed Barrier and Mulching
Tip 12: Increase Drainage if Water Is Love
Tip 13: Create a Hose Guide with Rebar and Wine Bottles
Tip 14: Prevent Potting Soil from Falling Out
Tip 15: Scorch Weeds
Tip 16: Fertilize in a Tub
As sight is the most obvious sensory experience of a garden, it is an appropriate beginning. Sights within a garden range from plants to ornamentation to architectural structure, and each component should be considered for the overall visual experience.
With varied plants, there are varied sights. Plants can be green, blue, red, white, purple, etc. They can be small or large. They can be deciduous or evergreen. Consider what you will see through each season of the year when selecting plants. Bulbs might be great for spring through fall, but a yaupon with berries won't disappoint during the winter months. Additionally consider foliage in addition to the blooms and vice versa. There are many colorful leaves that can be enjoyed throughout the year, and there are a great many varieties of blooms, berries, and seeds that are beautiful in each stage. The seeds of a canna are just as intriguing as the blooms. Select colors that are special to you.
Ranging from the fantastic to the understated, garden ornaments add focus, personality, and charm. You can select gazing balls, beautiful boulders, pots, and even the much maligned garden gnome. This is the easiest place to add instant personalization to a garden and provide reminders of the healing process. You can add signs with special meanings or reminders of positive experiences. You can keep it serene and minimalist to eliminate distractions and provide a space for meditation and personal reflection.
You can build a retaining wall out of stone or metal. Your pathways can be hardwood mulch or flagstone. You can fence with split rails or glass bottles. These largely functional structures still add to the visual impact of a garden and will last for months or centuries with proper maintenance. Make conscientious choices when selecting materials and placement, and imagine their functionality and aesthetic for garden experiences.