To celebrate National Tree Day on September 25, 2019, Otonabee Conservation and Peterborough Regional Healthcare Centre (PRHC) will be planting four trees and a pollinator garden in the new mental health courtyard at PRHC. These features will provide opportunities for patients and staff to benefit from the proven positive effects of trees and proximity to nature.
The four tree species selected are representative of the four seasons. In fall, the Autumn Blaze Maple will feature prominent red foliage; the White Spruce will provide greenery all winter long; a Crabapple tree represents spring, when its blooms are fragrant and showy; a Gingko tree is a hearty, drought-tolerant tree for summer.
“The health benefits of being close to nature are widely known,” Explains a representative from PRHC, “There is a strong connection between seeing, hearing, and experiencing nature and reduced negative emotions. Many studies have shown that nature can help relieve stress, anxiety, and depression and we are looking forward to bringing nature closer to our staff and patients at PRHC.”
In addition, a pollinator garden planted in the courtyard further enhances habitat and opportunities for patient engagement with nature. Native wildflower species will help attract butterflies, native bees, and birds to the courtyard.
The trees will provide habitat for wildlife as well, and complement the extensive naturalization projects previously undertaken by the hospital, in partnership with Otonabee Conservation.