There are a lot of elderly (and some not so elderly) people suffering from dementia around the world. Various studies have shown that taking care of plants is one way to help them as this hobby encourages sensory stimulation and can improve things like memory retention and attention span. Taking care of living things can also give the a sense of purpose. So this is one of the things that doctors are prescribing for their patients. This also means there’s room in the market for new products to serve this purpose for dementia patients.
Designer: Sungchae Park
This concept for a plant cultivation product is called plan.t, a play on the word plant and planning for tomorrow, something that dementia patients may have trouble doing. The designer thought of horticultural treatment as an aid to help those suffering from this condition, not as a cure but to help slow down the effects of the disease. As they grow the plants using this device, the hope is that their memories will be able to grow or improve alongside the greens.
The plan.t device lets the user track the progress of the plants that they’re growing in it through voice recording. They will be able to go back to these recordings to check on them and make sure that what they remember from the last time they adjusted or managed the plants are correct. The machine itself looks like a humidifier but with a plant growing in it, surrounded by soil and with water and light to help it grow.
The renders show that it can grow different kinds of plants. There’s a tray underneath where water can be stored and there’s a lamp at the top which can adjust to the height of the plant. You will be able to power and recharge the device through a USB port at the back. There’s no other information about what other functions the plan.t has but there should be other tools to help dementia patients as they cultivate their plants in the device.