School Sensory Garden

In the initial meeting with at the School it became clear that the children wanted a creative and imaginative landscape that offered them a wide range of sensory experiences. The children had some very exciting and awe inspiring concepts that I had to try and incorporate into the proposed design.

One thing that i was of was the fact that all landscapes induce sensory responses. But it’s the attention to providing a diverse experience that will give this garden its identity. This space is intended to be both passive and active by providing inviting and comfortable places to relax whilst also giving the users areas of high stimulation.

I’ve taken the area and split it in zones that represent not only the five main senses; sight, hearing, touch, smell and taste. I’ve also looked to accentuate this further by including water, as well as contemplation and mood zones; all with the intention to heighten the children’s feelings and thoughts whilst they interact with the garden. I’ve created tasks for the children to get involved by asking them to design and build their own wind chimes, and insect hotels to adorn the existing trees and the newly proposed wild flower meadow.The garden is designed with an interweaving curved bright red path that cuts through the garden; taking the children on a journey around the space. Disabled access has been included so that every child of all abilities can enjoy this exciting landscape.

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In order to maintain uniformity and harmony within the project I limited the materials used I’ve instead tried to create diversity and interest through vivid colours and architectural planting, for example there are rainbow coloured interactive planters and a Piet Oudolf  inspired ‘Listening’ trail. The wild flower meadow gives an organic natural balance against the angular hard planters. The design is well balanced, the area with the pond, raised planters and contemplation zone balance the clinical appearance of the ramp and steps at the opposite corner of the plot.

I’ve added further features that are intended to entertain and stimulate; the natural bamboo poles that are stood vertically and are hollow to differing levels to provide each one with its own acoustic sound when stuck with a stick; the childhood memory of running a stick along metal railings. The pond which is surrounded by decking and has gently sloping sides to allow water loving animals like frogs and newts to take up home will provide an excellent point of education; conservation and name the species. The depth has been careful considered so as not to pose a danger.

There is a communal vegetable patch which can be used by the afterschool club as big of a bigger community venture. The planting that I have chosen is intended to provide all year round interest from the seasonal bulbs under planted in the wild flower meadow to the winter attraction of the cornus alba and the

The soft landscaping plays an important role in softening the edges of accentuating the curves and circles that are an integral part of the design.

If you have a garden or a landscape that you would like to be designed or you would like to have a consultation then get in contact;

t_0751 966 5324

e_richard@rplgardendesign.co.uk

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