CSPH 5522 - Intro to Therapeutic Horticulture: Gardening is cheaper than therapy and you get tomatoes

This course is offered completely online. 


Course Description:

An introduction into the purposeful delivery of plants and plant related activities for therapeutic benefits. This course is designed to provide a basic understanding of the central elements of therapeutic horticulture in the context of multiple health care settings.  Students will learn the evidence-based history, principles, precepts, and practical application of therapeutic horticulture.  A variety of plant and plant related modalities from current research findings will be discussed related to various populations using therapeutic horticulture as a treatment intervention.

Course Objectives:

At the conclusion of the course the student will be able to:

  • Define therapeutic horticulture and its origin as a therapeutic modality.Apply the most current evidence-based research findings to support the delivery and treatment of therapeutic horticulture.
  • Understand the history and development of horticulture as a therapeutic modality.
  • Develop understanding of and the ability to use basic medical and psychiatric terminology in terms of the characteristics of illness and disability and their effects on an individuals functioning/treatment.
  • Describe the three levels of therapeutic horticulture using the Therapeutic Recreation model of service delivery.
  • Understand the diagnosis, etiology, symptomaology, and treatment for people with Parkinson’s disease and/or Alzheimer’s Disease using a therapeutic horticulture service delivery model.
  • Demonstrate the use of plants and plant related activities as a therapeutic delivery model using art, floriculture, accessible garden design, and/or nutrition.
  • Demonstrate how a therapeutic horticulture program garden can improve a person’s well-being through designed and prescribed encounters with plants that stimulate and engage their five senses.
  • Discuss and apply physical, social, psychological, cognitive and spiritual dimensions as outcome indicators of therapeutic horticulture and how these can benefit specific groups of people with purposeful service delivery.
  • Synthesize the semester course with the practical application of therapeutic horticulture to at least one individual and/or disability group.  Includes the discussion and application of scientific research supporting therapeutic horticulture use into a final program plan.

Course Details

Course ID: 
CSPH 5522
Graduate Students, Undergraduate students with junior status or above, or instructor consent.
Semesters Course Offered: 
Course Flyer: 
PDF icon Course Flyer (5.1 MB)