Blooms of Joy Project

What is Therapeutic Horticulture?

The ability of nature to heal and soothe is nothing new. For centuries, people have been positively affected by being in the presence of nature and gardens. Today, using horticulture as a therapeutic tool is an internationally recognized practice and research indicates that simply being present in the garden can positively affect levels of blood pressure, heart rate and stress. Small amounts of consistent, gentle gardening activities can improve physical strength and flexibility, and the sounds and smells in a garden can encourage memory and thought, as well as provide opportunities for social interaction.
Simply put, Therapeutic Horticulture involves the use of flowers, plants and gardening activities to help stimulate thought and memories, exercise the body, nurture the spirit, and provide opportunities for social and emotional growth. A well-planned, Therapeutic Horticulture program ensures that these benefits will be available to everyone involved.

Blooms of Joy Project

The Blooms of Joy Project is a social enterprise aimed at providing therapeutic horticulture, floral design and landscape design to organizations, day programs, treatment centers, residences and businesses.

hands holding plant

Therapeutic Horticulture: We are a mobile venture, so we will come to you bringing materials such as fresh cut flowers, green plants, soil, containers, and everything required for our planned projects. We will work with you to create an ongoing program designed to meet your therapeutic goals…be they social, physical, emotional or cognitive. As well, we can provide an entertaining and refreshing ‘Lunch and Learn’ gardening seminar or creative workshop for your staff that will fit nicely into their lunch break.


Floral Design: a big part of our social enterprise efforts involve employment skills training for people with developmental disabilities. We create lovely floral arrangements which we deliver directly to you, on contract. And we will replace your old arrangement with a fresh bouquet as often as you like! We guarantee our floral arrangements will bring a spot of cheerfulness to your office, home, reception area, lunch room…anywhere! Please keep us in mind for any of those special events that come your way…seasonal events, a wedding, or a fundraiser…let’s talk! This is a wonderful way to let your customers, clients, patients and employees know that you are giving back to the community through your support of our skills training program.

flowering almond

Landscape Design: We can design outdoor garden spaces that are perfect for those needing wheelchair accessible landscapes and when a sensory or healing garden is required for a therapeutic setting.


Who is the “Chief Gardener?”

Among other things, Karen Shea is called the “Chief Gardener.” She brings an extensive and varied background to the Blooms of Joy Project. With a B.A. from the Univ. of Toronto, and an M.A. in Pastoral Ministry and Group Facilitation from the Univ. of St. Paul in Ottawa, she spent 7 years working in Alberta before moving back to Ontario, where she began her second career in the field of horticulture. With a Diploma in Horticulture through the Univ. of Guelph, she began a 14 year stretch working as a plant specialist with several major retail garden centers, while studying Floral Design from Humber College, and attaining her Certificate in Horticultural Therapy from HomeFarm in B.C.

Karen is VERY excited about bringing the Blooms of Joy Project to the community! Her inspiration in doing so comes from her niece Joy Christine, who works alongside her at the Blooms of Joy Project. Inspired by Joy Christine’s dream to bring hope and kindness to the world, and motivated by Karen’s belief that change needs to start somewhere…the Blooms of Joy Project was born!

Contact us to discover how the Blooms of Joy Project can benefit you!
Karen Shea  at: