i like to garden

hello all i have a few questions does anybody know how to start a garden for the blind and how do you idenefy the plants? does anybody live in the united srates? i really would like to hear frpm u guys!
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Most of the posters here are in the United States, but there are others from around the world..I'm in Scotland.
There are many gardens developed in Britain by and for blind people; they accentuate the senses of touch sound and scent hence the usual name is "sensory gardens". One I saw had, at ground level, different textures of path (smooth paving, sand, woodchips, grass, crunchy gravel, pebbles and cobbles). Sounds included whispering grasses, phormiums whose leaves make a louder clacking noise in wind, trickling or gushing water, windchimes, Japanese deer-scares, birds attracted by feeders. Varied textures might include silky "lambs ears" (stachys lanata), bamboo, fennel, rosemary, pine, magnolia leaf, grasses, box topiary..prickly gorse a possibility..big boulders or sculptures. Those plants need to be robust enough to survive lots of stroking and squeezing. Scent includes many herbs, sweetpeas, roses, philadelphus, hyacinth, dianthus etc. You could also have a sensory section for taste, with herbs to nibble.
Many of the beds were raised to about hand-height, then braille labels were set along the top edge of the bed for plant identification. The different textures underfoot can be used to identify different areas, and you could also have a recorded audio description for visitors.
Searching on "sensory gardens" should find some references.
Janet.
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Visit a local nursery that specializes in plants for your area. Tell them what you want to do and they will be more than happy to help.
You'll want plants that have interesting textures to feel and a variety of fragrances to smell. Other than that, I can't imagine that a garden for the blind would be any different than one for a sighted person.
Genevieve, volunteer reader at Taping for the Blind Houston, TX
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