Gardening and Horticulture in British Columbia

Therapeutic Horticulture & Horticultural Therapy

The following organizations are good places to start research on Therapeutic Horticulture, Horticultural Therapy, restorative garden design, or therapeutic garden design. They provide comprehensive answers to questions such as, "What is horticultural therapy?", "What is enabling garden design?", or "What are the benefits of access to nature?". They also provide access to educational programs and resources.

CHTA  Canadian Horticultural Therapy Association

AHTA  American Horticultural Therapy Association

Thrive  Social & Therapeutic Horticulture in the United Kingdom

Trellis Scotland's network for therapeutic gardening

The Sensory Trust A UK national charity focused on health and well-being through access to nature and the natural world.

Gardens That Heal on Facebook
A public Facebook page managed by a collective of people whose work focuses on gardening, farming, or exploring the natural landscape to support health and wellness.

Gardens That Heal - Vancouver Island
A Vancouver Island gardening group, affiliated with the BC Council of Garden Clubs, that hosts meetings and workshops focused on therapeutic gardening.

Horticultural Therapy Professional Development Program on Facebook
A public Facebook page managed by Ann Kent HTM that provides information about education programs, job and volunteer opportunities, and links to contemporary research in garden and nature-based therapies.

Therapeutic Landscapes Network
Extensive evidence-based resources focus on how therapeutic gardens and landscapes promote health and well-being. You can explore this wonderful on-line library for hours.

Therapeutic Horticulture Activities Database
A free, comprehensive database published through the University of Florida and presented in compliance with the standards and practices of the AHTA.

Sources for information about plant toxicity, allergens, and dermatitis

Check at least three sources when researching a specific plant as cautionary information varies widely. Many poisonous plant information sites provide only a list of plant names, sometimes with a photo. Search for sites with comprehensive information for each plant and specify whether you are looking for toxicity information, for example, for humans, dogs, cats, livestock, wild birds, or bees.

Colorado State University - Guide to Poisonous Plants

New York Botanical Garden - Common Poisonous House Plants

North Carolina State University - Extension Gardener Plant Toolbox

Wikipedia - List of poisonous plants

University of California - Toxic Plants

Allergy-Free Gardening

More for gardeners, naturalists, educators, and those working in TH or HT

Nature heals. A growing evidence base supports the importance of access to nature for human health and well-being. Here are a few links to help you explore nature-based activities for various populations and communities:

Habitat Conservation Trust Foundation - Wild BC
Environmental programs focused on the study of nature and local ecology in BC. Many free activity resources as well as workshops and publications of interest to schoolteachers and educators

Sierra Club - British Columbia
Instructional kits and evaluation models for nature activity programs.

BC Nature - Federation of Naturalists
A wealth of information about local nature clubs in BC, accessible nature trails and sites, conservation and education programs, and bird and plant checklists.

Nanaimo Community Gardens Society
Volunteer and learning opportunities. Links to local, provincial, and national organizations provide information about community gardens and sustainable food systems.

Farm to School BC

BC Agriculture in the Classroom Foundation

Sustainable communities and sustainable horticulture

People look to gardening, where they live and work, as an important way of contributing to sustainability in their communities, now and for the future.

Through nature walks and garden-based activities, students in the Horticultural Therapy Professional Development program consider gardens and habitat in the context of healthy, sustainable communities.