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Saturday, January 10, 2009

Thinking of Roses and other ramblings

The next floral holiday is almost a month away... and the Flowershop (run by yours truly, a therapy assistant, and 4 other horticulture therapy patients) is gearing up. Flowers have been ordered. I think we are going to scale down to 800 roses this year. Half of that total will be red roses, and the remaining roses will be 100 yellow, pink, peach, and white. Last year the total was 900 roses but I think I had about 100+ to give away. I am also going to buy a bunch of different colored carnations, some snap dragons, some funky florida greens, filler, alstromerium, and pom pom daisies.

My patient load has gotten really low this time of year because I just came back from vacation and have to build my caseload back up. While I was away, the load was allowed to dwindle as that the assistant had less to manage. That is both a blessing and a curse. When I returned from vacation on January 5, I did not have to worry how to keep the one veteran on the caseload busy since there is enough work just in the flowershop alone for one patient. However, the flip side of that blessing is the fact that the bean counters will see that my efficiency is below standard. That always bothers me...probably because in times when budgets get strained, productivity is looked at as a means to give forth discipline. *sigh*

The influx of GWOT (global war on terror) veterans are starting to infiltrate the Medical Center and I have had 2 veterans to date. I am not surprised because on the flights to and from Texas, the numbers of enlisted personnel in uniform was staggering. These young men (and women) are proud but suffer with stories full on angst. Comparing the young guys to the older Vietnam and Vietnam Era veterans is inescapable. Beyond the age, the next difference that one sees is the expression of body modification/beautification to their bodies. For example, tatoos are everywhere and in great quantity. Piercings are in places that are inexplainable. Ears, eyebrows, lips, tongue, and the rest you don't want to know.

Soon, we will start potting up thousands of baby annuals and periennals. Until then, stay warm!


  1. It's so interesting to hear about your work. Have you done a post specifically explaining your techniques? I am a mentor for Children in the custody of the state, and meet with a lot of their therapists. I have not heard much about horticultural therapy, but it sounds wonderful!

  2. I haven't done a specific post... that is a wonderful idea! I tried working with kids in addition to my vets. It was okay with the veterans because they like having someone to teach but I needed the kids to be more independent than they were. Horticulture therapy is incorporated by many disciplines, but it is trying to become its own specific discipline. Stay tuned! Thanks!