By Adal Meier. Home Decoration. Published at Sunday, April 21st, 2019 - 10:57:36 AM.
Plants and herbs. In most gardens, its best to seek out a variety of heights, textures, and colors. If privacy and quiet are desired, evergreens like spruces or a “wall” of noninvasive bamboo may be a good choice. Landscape designer Donna Christensen of Christensen Landscape Services in Northford, Conn., uses lilacs not just for their fragrance but because she can also group them to create a privacy hedge. But be aware that too many plant walls can create a dark, claustrophobic space. Color may contribute to healing, too. Blue is a good universal choice because most find it calming, Langrall says. Those with cataracts find it easier to see bolder rather than pastel hues. Butterfly bushes do double duty by displaying colorful flowers and attracting butterflies to add vibrancy, but be sure to choose a seedless or low-fertility variety, as the plants are considered invasive in some areas. Other plants that attract pollinators include cosmos, foxgloves, and cone varieties. Certain herbs have a symbolic connection and can offer freshness in favorite recipes and a medicinal effect. Chamomile is one standout example of this archetype as its equated with comforting, but is also thought to work as an antioxidant, anti-inflammatory agent, and tissue regenerator. Tomatoes and leafy greens also help fight inflammation, and herbs can be seeped in water to flavor what can be a healthy alternative to soda, says Lisa Schwartz, a physical therapist and coordinator at the Marianjoy Center. “Planting in raised beds or along walls also is smart, so people dont have to bend and reach as much,” Schwartz says. And for those wanting something tactile, many therapy gardens, especially those designed for children, feature fuzzy, soft lambs ear, which has the additional benefit of bearing a cute name, Sachs says.
Many cat walks are readily available through online resources or at pet stores at minimal cost, says Peter Cohen, who owns the custom homebuilding company Trillium Enterprises in Santa Barbara, Calif. To build multiple custom walks can be far pricier. Cohen says that one job he handled cost $35,000. In his own home, he has multiple tunnels, bridges, scratching posts, and 300 feet of walkways for the 24 cats hes rescued. For owners wary about resale, Stan Williams, CEO and owner of Stanton Homes in Raleigh, N.C., says cat walks can often be used by catless buyers as bookshelves or an area for displaying collectibles. Some also like to include a “catio,” a small enclosed screened porch that often juts out from the home above the ground, so a cat can enjoy fresh air but remain safe indoors, says Peggy Lynch, vice president of professional development and compliance for the Richmond Association of REALTORS® in Richmond, Va.
These therapy gardens arent just for those seeking relief, however, says Langrall, who also writes the “Santa Fe in Bloom” column for the Santa Fe New Mexican. “Caregivers may find it helpful to escape outside for a few minutes to relieve their stress,” she adds. With interest in therapy gardens growing, its important that youre able to help clients understand what elements they might want to incorporate, including plants, hardscape, and architectural features. And if you land a listing that already has this kind of garden, make sure you understand how it can help a home stand out amid less nurturing inventory.
Another builder that focuses on large luxury homes takes the concept a step further by giving the pajama lounge some of the best views in the house. Architect Paul Fischman of Miami-based Choeff Levy Fischman puts the spaces near bedrooms on the second level so they overlook water views, as most of their houses face the ocean or intracoastal waterways. And even when a site seems impossibly tight, Lexington Homes has found a way to squeeze in these spaces. The Chicago builder is adding pajama lounges to the three-story townhomes its constructing in the citys Avondale neighborhood, on the third floor near the master bedroom suite. “The idea,” says co-principal Jeff Benach, “is that children whose rooms and bedroom are on the second floor will come up to the parents level so all can hang out together.” For those parents who dont want to climb an extra flight of stairs, the master suite and flex room might be switched with the second-floor childrens bedrooms. The floor on which the flex space is placed is less important than ensuring that theres a bathroom close by, Benach says.
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