Horticultural Therapy vs Therapeutic Horticulture
A growing body of research shows that gardening , working with plants, and spending time in nature offers myriad benefits for body and soul.
The American Horticultural Therapy Association has two definitions of practice that support the role of a horticultural therapist. Whatever type of nature based therapy practiced, CHTN encourages everyone to join, support, and share knowledge and ideas.
Horticultural therapy is the participation in horticultural activities facilitated by a registered horticultural therapist to achieve specific goals within an established treatment, rehabilitation, or vocational plan. Horticultural therapy is an active process which occurs in the context of an established treatment plan where the process itself is considered the therapeutic activity rather than the end product.
Therapeutic horticulture is the participation in horticultural activities facilitated by a registered horticultural therapist or other professionals with training in the use of horticulture as a therapeutic modality to support program goals. Therapeutic horticulture is the process through which participants enhance their well-being through active or passive involvement in plant and plant-related activities
CHTN Member Emilee Weaver of the UNC Botanical Gardens uses the chart below to discuss the differences with her students.
Participants actively engage in plant or nature-based activities with the intention of achieving specific personal treatment goals
Short and long term treatment goals are created to support an established treatment, rehabilitation, or vocational plan
Most commonly used in clinical sites, but can be used at any site
Conducted exclusively by a registered horticultural therapist (HTR)
Participants actively OR passively engage in plant or nature-based activities to achieve personal goals OR to enhance general health and wellness
Program and/or personal goals may or may not function within an established treatment plan and are most commonly designed to enhance general health and wellness
Most commonly used in non-clinical, community-based sites, but can be used in clinical settings (especially by professionals who have training in allied fields)
Conducted by a registered horticultural therapist (HTR) or other professionals with training in the use of horticulture as a therapeutic modality