Monday, 13th July 2020
GARDEN Article

This Month's Magazine
The sensory garden

The sensory garden

This month Renaldo shares the experience of his recent trip to The Botanical Gardens in Chicago

by Renaldo Pardini

The sensory garden is a place for the senses and even though we experience the garden through our senses, many of us limit our enjoyment to only the one sense of sight. By creating a sensory garden we can awaken our other senses and experience beauty in a whole new way.

There are four ways of exploring your senses in this type of garden.

  • Feel: leaves, bark and flowers to discover interesting textures.
  • Smell: plants and compare their fragrance.
  • Listen: to the garden for ┬ôliving┬ö sounds like water, wind, birdsong, insects, rustling grasses, leaves and trees.
  • Look: for the different colours and shapes of trees, shrubs, grasses, leaves and flowers.

There are some important factors to take into consideration when creating this type of garden.

Try Planting fragrant flowers and herbs in raised beds or containers, to bring pleasant scents closer to the house. Place fragrant plants near doors and windows for maximum enjoyment.

Try to include the soothing sound of water by adding a pond or fountain. Create a mood by using colour, red, yellow and orange plants make a warm and inviting garden, whilst green, blue or violet plants create a serene atmosphere. Make natural music with plants and grasses that rustle in the wind. Select plants with coloured and textured leaves, flowers, berries or barks to make your garden visually interesting all year round. 


Choose plants that are furry, spongy, prickly or silky to add tactile delight. Combine tall, medium and short plants to create visual interest.

Group plants with subtle fragrances in drifts to combine their scents and intensify the effect. Try planting shrubs, flowers and trees that attract bees, birds and butterflies to your garden.

Visiting your local nursery will give you a good idea of the variety of fragrant plants and herbs available and the colours, textures and structures that mix best. Then simply sit back and enjoy the sounds, fragrance and beauty of your very own sensory garden.

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