Key plants in The National Autistic Society Garden

The planting will create two distinct areas in the garden: The hidden ‘inner room’ with woodland planting, and the outer garden with bolder drifts of colour amongst grasses and sedges

Sphagnum moss

“Sphagnum moss is almost single-handedly responsible for creating and maintaining peat bogs, one of the most important carbon sinks globally and one that we really need to look after if we are to have any hope of reining in runaway climate change” – Dr. Neil Bell, Bryologist at the Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh 

We will also include Polytrichum sp. (haircap moss), Hylocomium splendens (glittering wood moss) and Dicranum scoparium (broom fork moss). 

Betula nigra (river birch)

The River Birch (Betula nigra) is the key plant of the garden. It's textural bark will complement the cork walls, both forming the perfect metaphor for ‘masking’ by providing a protective and attractive outer surface. Two other species selected for their bark include the Golden Willow (Salix alba var. vitellina ‘Yelverton’) and the popular Red-stemmed Dogwood (Cornus sanguinea ‘Midwinter Fire’).

Molinia caerulea subsp. arundinacea ‘Karl Foerster’

A cultivar of Molinia caerulea - our native purple moor grass - will be used to give the feel of a wetland meadow at the front of the garden, and through which other ornamentals will give bold drifts of colour.

Meconopsis ‘Lingholm’

© John Feilding

We hope to have those notoriously fickle, but ethereally beautiful, blue poppies (Meconopsis spp.) so beloved by RHS Chelsea visitors.

Cephalotaxus harringtonia ‘Fastigiata’

The Japanese Plum Yew is a great example of one of the more unusual edible species included in the garden. Although not designed primarily as an edible garden, all our planting and hard landscaping materials are non-toxic.

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The Royal Horticultural Society is the UK’s leading gardening charity. We aim to enrich everyone’s life through plants, and make the UK a greener and more beautiful place.