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Gardening in the Workplace: Gardens Can Boost Morale

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Five Steps to Create a Company Community Garden

  • Send out questionnaire to employees to see if there is an interest in creating a company garden.
  • Create a garden committee to oversee installation and maintenance of garden.
  • Find a location on the property that is sunny most of the day with access to water.

  Receive approval to use that space for a garden.

  • If you are located in Mecklenburg County, contact your Working Toward Wellness Representative to find resources for discounted compost soil, seeds, planting tips and tilling.
  • Blood pressure class. Teach employees the meaning of blood pressure, how to lower their blood pressure and how to measure their blood pressure. Supply blood pressure cuffs so they can practice their new skill on a partner.

Five Steps to Creating a Container Garden

  • Designate specific outdoor planters as Container Gardens.
  • Find employees that have an interest in gardening.
  • Each interested employee should be assigned their own container or designated section to plant, maintain and harvest.
  • Ask employees to bring in soil, seeds or plants to put into containers or Company may want to provide potting soil.
  • Participants should be aware that if their container is not maintained it will be forfeited.

Gardening in the Workplace: Adopt-a-Spot
Create competition between employees or departments by creating “Adopt-a-spot” areas. These areas may include flowers as well as produce and herbs to beautify the outdoor environment. Gardening is a wonderful team building exercise and helps improve employee moral by giving them a place of expression and ownership in their work environment. This is a great place to utilize edible landscaping.

Consider Edible Landscaping You can easily improve the outdoor environment by adding alternative landscaping to create access to fresh herbs and produce for your employees as well as a habitat for birds and animals. 

Ideas for Edible Landscapes

  • Use basil with coleus as a soft accent. 
  • Use oregano or strawberries as a ground cover. 
  • Use rosemary as a shrub instead of boxwoods. 
  • Use a Red Current plant as a colorful accent. 
  • Plant a fruit tree in the corner of your property. 
  • Grow Red-jewel Cabbage or yellow or “rainbow” chard. 
  • Plant colorful pepper varieties (e.g., Lipstick, Habanero) alongside flowers. 
  • Tuck lettuce, radishes, or other short-lived greens into a flower bed. 
  • Grow chives. 
  • Train raspberries up your fence.

Encourage employees to get involved in the process, they will probably enjoy an opportunity to get their hands dirty at lunch or after work. If you are concerned about being overwhelmed, just start small, begin with container gardens on the patio and go from there.

Adapted from Ohio State University Extension Fact Sheet, Horticulture and Crop Science, Edible Landscaping.

Material posted on this website is for informational purposes only and does not constitute a legal opinion or medical advice. Contact your legal representative or medical professional for information specific to your legal or medical needs.

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