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    I have a wonderful core group around me. My wife, kids, brothers and personal care attendants. I learned at the CAN DO Program that support partners also need their own moments in life. I appreciate all that they do.

    Robie P., CAN DO Program Participant

    by Gail Hartley, NP, MSN, MSCN

    Spring has sprung and it is time to look forward to a new season of growth. Growing a garden—whether flowers or vegetables—is a wonderful, relaxing and therapeutic way to get you in touch with Mother Nature.

    Here are some simple suggestions for digging into this enjoyable activity.

    • First, choose a garden type that is suited to your ability, lifestyle and space.  Keep it small if you are a beginner. Try planting flowers or vegetables in pots, window boxes or hanging baskets on your patio. Planters raised to the necessary height to allow a chair to slip underneath are ideal for person who cannot stand or bend down. Keep plants within reach for watering and pruning. Vertical frames for climbing varieties can also be used.

    • Use tools to make gardening easy. Foam pads for kneeling and small stools for sitting can make working close to the ground more comfortable. Use long-handled garden tools to avoid bending over and short-handled tools when sitting. Use a small lightweight cart or wagon for moving your tools and supplies. Keep a portable phone with you in the garden so you don’t miss calls or need to call for help.

    • Consider growing a shade garden. With MS, you may find that you have lots in common with plants that wilt in the hot sun. There are many varieties of plants that thrive in the shade or grow well indoors, providing you with color and fragrance. Consider small pots of herbs or succulents that can be kept on a counter near a sunny window. These may also allow you to extend your gardening experience all year long.

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    PO Box 5860 Avon, CO 81620 Phone: 970-926-1290 or 800-367-3101 Fax: 970-926-1295 Email:
    MS Coalition Charity Navigator Consortium of Multiple Sclerosis Centers Independent Charities of America Humane Charity

    Can Do Multiple Sclerosis™ is a 501 (c)(3) nonprofit organization.
    Charitable Organization Number: 74-2337853

    Formerly The Heuga Center for Multiple Sclerosis | Founded by Jimmie Heuga

    A national nonprofit organization, Can Do MS is a leading provider of innovative lifestyle empowerment programs
    that empower people with MS and their support partners to transform and improve their quality of life.

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