6 Ways to Celebrate Earth Day, Arbor Day, and National Garden Month
April is here! With sunnier days, warmer temperatures, and fragrant blooms popping up, we think it’s safe to say that Spring is officially in the air. You might know that we celebrate Earth Day and Arbor Day in April, but did you know April is also National Garden Month? Here are six ways to embrace that Spring fever all month long, from our Benchmark communities to your backyard, and beyond.
- Plant your own garden plot.
Gardening has specifically been linked to improved cognitive function, reduced stress and anxiety, and increased physical activity. So try your hand at indoor or outdoor gardening this spring. Most of our communities have raised garden beds to grow flowers and vegetables––the same vegetables that our chefs use to cook meals! You can even grow cooking herbs and small vegetables from your windowsill indoors.
- Get your daily step counts in while getting a dose of fresh air.
Grab a friend, go on your own, or consider starting or joining a daily walking club in your neighborhood or at a Benchmark community. In fact, a number of our communities already have walking clubs. Not big on walking? Simply spending any amount of time outside can have a positive impact on your health. Studies have shown that seniors who connect with nature have decreased stress levels, reduced blood pressure, and improved their mood.
- Take a mindful moment surrounded by the natural beauty right in your backyard.
Whether your home has a patio, a yard, a porch, or there’s a park nearby, be sure to get outside. Natural light exposure also helps regulate circadian rhythms and support healthy sleep patterns, which can be especially beneficial for seniors who may struggle with insomnia or other sleep-related issues. A number of our Benchmark communities are built with outdoor patios, gardens, sun rooms, and walking paths to make it easier to take advantage of nice weather without venturing too far from home.
- Practice sustainability.
Celebrate Earth Day on April 22nd by supporting sustainable practices like reusing bags, water bottles, and other containers. We also encourage you to spread the word to family and friends about reducing their carbon footprint. At Benchmark, a number of our communities are also doing a number of benefit events to recycle clothing, clean up the beach at the Seacoast Science Center, and raise money for a great cause.
- Take to the trees.
Arbor Day focuses on the importance of trees and their role in the environment. To observe this holiday on April 28, consider planting a tree, visiting a local arboretum or botanical garden, or simply strolling through a park. At Benchmark, we provide a number of off-site trips to various local parks and gardens where residents can take a nice stroll and enjoy nature’s beauty. A number of our communities have also planted trees to honor and commemorate residents who have passed on.
- Choose your own adventure!
There’s so much more you can do outside, wherever you are. Try a game of bocce, work on your swing at your local driving range, or simply read the paper at your favorite park bench. At Benchmark, we have a wide range of activities, programs, and opportunities to spend time in nature on a daily basis. In addition to gardening and walking clubs, many of our communities have bird watching clubs, outdoor fitness classes, as well as organized outings to nearby parks, beaches, and other outdoor destinations. As the weather warms up, keep an eye out for our outdoor events at our communities including concerts, picnics, and barbecues, all spring and summer long too.
As the days grow longer and Spring continues to unfold in the coming weeks, be sure to branch out and embrace the great outdoors this Earth Day, Arbor Day, throughout National Garden Month, and the warmer days ahead. And at Benchmark, there are even more ways to get outside, appreciate the beauty of nature, and do our part for the planet. To discover the other opportunities and ways we help encourage residents to get outside, visit one of our communities by scheduling a tour.