How Senior Living Facilities Benefit From Biophilic Design

Written By Jackie Greene

Vice President of Business Development

How Senior Living Facilities Benefit From Biophilic Design

The natural amenity that takes senior residences from drab to therapeutic

Vickery Rose is not your average retirement home. The Roswell-based community provides residents with a resort lifestyle, complete with turn-key service, fine dining, and a full calendar of activities. But what really sets Vickery Rose apart is its attention to biophilic design and its Copiana farm.

Vickery Rose’s partnership with Copiana means that a natural environment is accessible to all residents. Our aeroponic towers can produce fresh herbs and vegetables indoors, year-round.

“Prospective residents are excited to see [the towers], and it’s a big selling point for us,” says Leo Jewell, a community manager at Vickery Rose. The success of the farm is one example of how biophilic design can drastically improve the senior living experience and quality of life.

What is biophilic design?

Biophilia means love of nature. If a process is biophilic, it helps humans align more closely with nature. This approach focuses on human health and well-being and emphasizes outdoor areas. Biophilic spaces can include large, functional windows and natural building materials.

Biophilic elements in senior living communities provide less mobile residents access to nature. Outdoor areas should be plentiful and easy to reach, but can still exclude some residents. Bringing nature indoors can be more challenging.

Why does biophilic design matter?

Residents are more interested than ever before in spaces that promote well-being and health.

Architect for senior residences Jami Mohlenkamp stresses the importance for “residents, staff, and visitors to continue to experience the living, healing power of the outdoors as much as possible.”

One way to ensure all residents have access to nature is through vertical agriculture. This two-pronged solution provides farm-to-table nutritious produce for residents and allows them to witness the growing process. While farming on a large scale may not be feasible for your property, Copiana makes incorporating an aeroponic farm easy and maintenance-free — a few feet of space is all you need!

biophilic environment

How Copiana can provide a biophilic environment for existing communities

At Vickery Rose, two small aeroponic tower farms have made a world of difference for senior residents. “It’s really been a showstopper here for our community. I’m a believer now,” says Anthony Washington, Vickery Rose community manager.

Annice, a resident at Vickery Rose, loves how accessible the towers are. “You just come downstairs — you don’t have to get in your car — and it’s right here for you,” she says. “It’s wonderful.”

Our team of farmers delivers, installs, maintains, and harvests the towers. Once a month, residents gather for a harvest event in which our farmers demonstrate how to use the just-picked produce.

“I love the harvest events,” says Lewis Reynolds, another resident. We can see how much the garden’s produced, and then we can take home some things. My favorite is lavender.” Residents enjoy taking home herbs from the towers, like lavender and sage, to put in vases in their rooms. Take-home plants are one of the ways in which Copiana helps senior residents bring nature into their personal spaces.

Growing produce on property is a great way to get residents excited about eating healthy. Aerponically-grown produce is more nutrient-dense than conventional agriculture, providing essential vitamins and minerals in every bite. Our fresh herbs can introduce new and brighter flavors to favorite recipes, which helps stimulate seniors' appetites.

Harvest events typically include a recipe demonstration, like lavender lemonade or wheatgrass shots. Excess produce goes to Vickery Rose’s luxury dining service to become fresh salads or herb garnishes. Residents say they are delighted with the new source of fresh food.

biophilic design

How to apply biophilic design principles to your senior living facility

If you want to improve your residents’ access to natural spaces without a major building renovation or a large-scale farm, Copiana may be the perfect solution.

Our towers can go just about anywhere, indoor or outdoor, lobby or patio. Our team will consider light, temperature, and available space when determining the best place for a tower farm on your property.

Ready for your community to reap the benefits of fresh produce? Contact us to learn more about how a customized aeroponic tower farm can bring the health and wellness benefits of biophilic design to your property.

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