A cultural landscape
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Although research on therapeutic gardens has addressed pathologically specific populations such as pediatric, psychiatric, geriatric, and Alzheimer’s patients, these studies rarely provide insight into designing healing gardens for a culturally specific population. The primary goal of this thesis is to integrate Chinese cultural connotation into western therapeutic garden design theories in order to design therapeutic gardens specific to Chinese senior residents. This thesis reviews publications that discuss theories on nature, the characteristics of the elderly demographics as well as the notion of health preservation, traditional Chinese medicine, and the Five Elements Theory in Chinese culture, generates guidelines by analyzing the elderly’s needs, proposes a design concept derived from the notion of health preservation, and applies the guidelines and the design concept into the therapeutic garden design at the Dongtan Senior Community, Shanghai, China.