Tips for gardening with arthritis

Brynmor Administrator Posts: 1,784
edited 22. Nov 2021, 15:17 in News

The sun is out, and the sky is blue, so it’s the perfect time to get stuck into the gardening. Spending some time outside on these longer and lighter days can help our wellbeing too, especially in this time of lockdown. It's a chance to enjoy nature, plant some seeds, watch the birds and boost your vitamin D.

For people with arthritis, gardening can be more of a challenge. If you get tired easily and have painful joints, tending your plants may seem like more trouble than it’s worth, but we can all enjoy the pleasures of gardening if we change how we do it. 

Read our tips on gardening with arthritis:



  • Mike1
    Mike1 Member Posts: 1,992

    I have always enjoyed gardening and growing my own but as my OA rapidly spread and got worse I became unable to carry on. To make life easier and also to negate the overwhelming feeling of frustration when I looked at it I decided that the best thing would be to put in plastic grass, raised beds etc. Being physically unable to do the work myself I contacted gardening clubs in Cornwall and groups that supposedly offer help to the disabled and only one responded and that was in the negative. Not having much spare cash to be able to enage someone to do it and also pay for the materials I needed I approached the Gardening For The Disabled Trust and they were able to pay for the materials up to a limit, all they wanted was photos of the way the garden was and a plan of what I wanted, then all I had to do was submit invoices for everything that I purchased for the garden. Afterwards they asked for photos and a bit of a write-up about how the alterations had improved life for me. All in all a good experience which enabled me to get most of what I wanted done. Well worth a look if you are in a similar situation.

  • Kazza52
    Kazza52 Member Posts: 74

    I love being out in the sunshine and tending my garden. When the weather is hot and sunny I do gardening for about an hour each day and if I can I sit down when weeding, potting, etc.

    Some garden centres are also doing home deliveries to people who are shielding which is a great help.

    I also find that the sun (but remember to use sunscreen) has a beneficial effect on my joints and find that when gardening/sitting in the garden my joint pain subsides.

    If you are able to get in your garden it also helps with your mental wellbeing.

  • Lilymary
    Lilymary Member Posts: 1,503
    edited 22. Nov 2021, 15:19

    I thought I’d resurrrect this post as there appear to be a few new forum members who are keen but frustrated gardeners. If anyone wants to add more tips on what they’ve found works for them, I’m sure it would be really helpful. @Brynmor , the link to the article doesn’t seem to be working. Would you be able to share it again please?

    Thanks for letting us know @Lilymary , sorry it's taken a while to spot the discussion! Link now replaced Yx

  • wazz42
    wazz42 Member Posts: 207

    A tip from me too

    I can only do any task for at the most 30 minutes before I have to stop completely/change job/stretch muscles so I select some songs on my phone and when they finish I know it's time to break off. Hard if you are in the middle of something but so much better than not getting into the garden at all the next day, and maybe the next as well

    Hope it helps x

  • Spider
    Spider Member Posts: 3

    I too love gardening but cannot kneel anymore! Help!!!

  • Fran54
    Fran54 Member Posts: 45

    Hi Spider

    I too love gardening and also because of osteoarthritis in my right knee, I cannot kneel anymore. A few years ago, I bought one of those seats/kneelers which you can sit on. I find it quite helpful when weeding individual pots. As for general weeding I use a long handled hoe for digging up the weeds, then I use it as a prop to bend down and pick up the weeds.

    I do limit myself to about half an hour of gardening at one time, as I know I will suffer the next day otherwise!

    I must admit that now I have a gardener to come in and do the more strenuous jobs, like digging over the vegetable patches, then get my lovely husband to plant the veggies for me😊 ( He does suffer with back problems, but does help me when he can)

    I find my garden helps me too relax and is a diversion from thinking too much about my health problems. Hope this helps.

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