Montana Rural Health Initiative

Pondera Medical Center Memory Walk Gardens

The Pondera Medical Center partnered with the Conrad Garden Club, Conrad High School Horticulture Class, Conrad High School FFA and the Department of Natural Resources and Conservation to develop raised garden beds. PMC and its partners created Memory Walk Gardens to foster a space where young and old alike can come together to play, exercise, reflect and grow.PMC logo

This project began in May of 2012 and was completed in December of 2012. The gardens have generated a large amount of support  from both those living and working at the Pondera Medical Center (PMC), families, Conrad High School students and the community. Originally the gardens were just raised beds. However, volunteers rebuilt the in-ground raised beds constructed by the FFA so that they are now mobile. Each bed sits on wheels and can be rolled all over the patio, creating more accessibility for the PMC residents. Soaker hoses were also fixed to the beds to facilitate easier watering. A different group of volunteers made small planters with castor wheels. The Conrad High School Horticulture Class donated vegetable plant starters for the raised beds and assisted in planting the hanging baskets for the patio.

PMC residents spent the summertime hours watching and helping the garden grow. They were able to sample lettuce, basil, tomatoes and carrots as well as cut flowers from the patio area. The residents used the peppers and tomatoes from the garden to make fresh salsa. The leaves from the rhubarb plants were used for some fun arts and crafts projects. PMC residents made leaf impressions in cement mixtures and formed bird baths and stepping-stones for the garden.