The Empowerment Garden

Terrace Garden

Co-designed by users of Petrus – people who are homeless or at risk of homelessness – this garden represents the freeing, uplifting and unifying aspects of horticulture.

At the centre of the space, curved seating built around a barbecue area encourages reflection, immersion in nature and sociability. Surrounding this, taller edibles such as peas and beans enclose the area, and provide more of a connection to the natural world, as well as access to fresh, nutritious produce. Meanwhile, a bubbling water feature introduces a calming soundscape.

A wealth of pollinator-friendly flowers in a calming palette of blue, purple, apricot and white, as well as shrubs, trees and herbs, encourage biodiversity; creating a garden that’s beneficial to both people and the natural world. The copper tones of the corten screens and the path, as well as the blues of the planters and the painted wall, are picked up in the planting palette.

Overall, the garden shows how edibles can be incorporated into even the smallest spaces, and still look incredibly attractive. 

Key plants: black-leafed elder, sage, dahlias, rosemary, apple trees

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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.