Gardening App Provides Caregiver Stress Relief in Time for Earth Day

With spring upon us and Earth Day this weekend, caregivers and their senior clients might be wondering what they can do to be environmentally friendly and get outdoors a little more. As a hobby, gardening offers a way to help the earth, grow your own healthy foods and relieve some stress. The Garden Compass app provides gardening assistance to caregivers and their senior clients.

Caregivers and their senior clients can spend some time discussing what they'd like to plant in their garden before purchasing seeds. Seeds can be purchased online or at a retailer such as Home Depot. Once caregivers and their senior clients have decided what they'd like to plant and selected a location for their garden, then they can begin using the app. 

Users need to create an account upon initially opening the app. This can be done using a Facebook profile or email address. Then, caregivers can begin building their garden virtually. The app allows users to quickly scan the barcode on a plant to accurately add it to their garden. Alternatively, caregivers can search by the exact scientific name of their plant to add it to the list, or they can add a more generic category to the garden list. The generic categories include Annuals, Bulbs, Citrus and Avocado, Vegetables and Herbs, etc.

In the free version of the app, users can add up to three different plants to their garden. This gives caregivers a chance to try the app and see if they like it, and then if they do they can upgrade to the paid version. The different garden selections are then used to populate the Care Calendar on a month-by-month basis.

The Care Calendar gives caregivers specific advice on how to take care of each plant during that month. For example, during April it indicates which garden items can be planted during cold weather, and then it May it will detail which vegetables can be harvested. This will be particularly useful for senior caregivers and their clients who are new to gardening. 

If caregivers run into unexpected issues while tending to their garden, such as bugs eating their plants or the plants not growing as expected, the app also offers a pest identification service. Using this section of the app requires a credit, which users are given a few of for free upon signing up or can purchase. They then can snap a photo of their garden and upload it to the app. They can also include a comment, and then the experts will examine the photo and offer specific identification of the pest. 

The Garden Compass app is available for Apple and Android platforms. 

Senior caregivers, let us know your feedback on this app and keep us posted if you discover additional apps that assist with caregiving duties and help relieve caregiver stress. You may also refer-a-friend to a senior caregiving job and win prizes weekly and monthly on Caregiverlist. 

-Paige Krzysko

Celebrate Arbor Day and Get Outdoors with Park Finder App

Arbor Day is next Friday, April 29. While the natural first inclination as a way to celebrate Arbor Day might be to plant a tree in your yard, caregivers and their senior clients don't have to go through quite so much physical labor to appreciate nature. Using the Oh, Ranger! ParkFinder app, caregivers can search local parks to enjoy with their senior clients as a way to get some fresh air, or on their own for hiking, biking or running as a form of exercise. 

After users first open the app and authorize it to use their location, they then have the option to search for parks based strictly on location, or instead select Things to Do at the parks prior to searching. Options on the Things to Do list include birdwatching, picnicking, hiking, fishing, boating, etc. Once caregivers select specific activities and initiate the search, a list comes back of all the parks in the area that meet that criteria. 

The app displays parks in a list, starting with the one closest to the user's current location and moving farther away as the list continues. There's also a map feature which allows users to see all the results plotted out, in case they'd like to find a park that way instead. 

Once users identify a park they might like to visit, they can click on it for a one or two paragraph description of the park in addition to a list of all the Things to Do there. The description tries to provide all pertinent information, such as the type of equipment at the park and the layout. One even shares information on whether the park is considered ADA accessible, which is helpful for senior caregivers whose clients might be in wheelchairs. 

The app only offers photos uploaded by other users who visited the park previously, so some of the parks have no photos at all. Caregivers can also read reviews left by other visitors to get an idea of what to expect when they visit, and leave their own review after they spend time in the park themselves. 

The last part of the park profile provides contact information for the park, including the organization who owns it (i.e. Chicago Park District) and the main phone number. Caregivers can check in when they visit the park to keep track of where they've been and save their favorite parks to the My Parks area of the app. 

Senior caregivers might find that spending just half an hour at a park with their senior client on the way home from an errand provides a nice way to stop and connect with nature. Running or biking outdoors at a park also offers a change of pace from regular gym equipment and some nice local greenery for added views. 

The Oh, Ranger! Park Finder app is available for Apple and Android platforms. 

Senior caregivers, let us know your feedback on this app and keep us posted if you discovers additional apps that assist with caregiving duties and help relieve caregiver stress. You may also refer-a-friend to a senior caregiving job and win prizes weekly and monthly on Caregiverlist. 

-Paige Krzysko

Caregiver Stress Relief Photo of the Week

Caregivers employed with senior care companies know the realities of caregiver stress. Caregiverlist invites all family caregivers and professional caregivers to take a moment for relaxation with our photo of the week and inspirational quote. This week's photo features field full of wild and colorful flowers for caregivers to mentally walk through. Thank you caregivers for caring for our seniors and please refer your friends to apply for part-time and full-time job positions on and visit our career center for additional career tools.

Stress Relief Photo of the Week Wild Flowers Field

"Feelings are everywhere, be gentle."

J. Masai

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