Nature Garden

2017

At Ravenor Primary School, we were asked to transform an overgrown and unused area behind the staff car park into an inviting, multi-faceted, nature and outdoor learning environment. A large central area of clean and comfortable artificial grass provides a durable easy-care surface for children to sit and gather. A large greenhouse and shed, cold-frames, and two large raised planter beds give space for the growing and nurturing of vegetable crops. One end of the garden we landscaped and planted to create a 'wonder walk' of raised timber walkways that meander through stands of tall bamboo and around a large tree-stump and rockery mound planted with a broad variety of woodland plants, mosses and succulents - the combination of which create a host of micro-environments that the children can discover and even augment with small plants/additions of their own. The other end we have created a nature area planted with woodland bulbs, flowering ground-cover plants and shrubs which the children can explore from paths that lead to a woodpile for mini-beasts, and a tree-stump circle where finds can be shown and compared. In the middle we have made a ring of benching and tables where classes can gather for more focused outdoor classroom work. Around the perimeter we have planted a hedge of mixed, bird-friendly hedging to give seasonal colour, shelter from the adjacent road, and provide nesting and feeding for birds, and attract wildlife in the years to come.

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