How to design a sensory garden


A sensory garden is truly a gift for the senses. Creating your own can be a fantastic method of providing a holistic approach to sensual stimulation whenever you want or need to. Your garden can offer a therapeutic environment with diverse textures, scents, colours, and sounds, promoting relaxation, sensory stimulation, and stress reduction.

Enjoy a plethora of pleasant sights, smells, sounds and touches by designing a garden with the right mix of plant life, wildlife and other features. Consider the following:

Location and layout

Plan a rough layout for your outdoor space to maximise the potential of your sensory garden. You may want to designate space for recliners or reserve a corner for a outdoor furniture set area, so plan these in advance.

Consider where the sun shines throughout the day so you can maximise growing conditions and help soak up the rays. If you need any landscaping done, it’s best to do this first so you don’t have to disturb your garden once it’s planted.

Diverse range of plants

A broad range of flora is one of the fundamentals of an effective sensory garden. Strike the right balance of bold colours, mesmerising scents, peaceful sounds and intriguing textures to give everyone something to enjoy. Sunflowers are bright and beautiful, while lavender has a comforting smell and stunning violet hue. Why not throw in some fountain grass that whispers in the wind?

Areas for rest and relaxation

You want to be able to sit back, relax and immerse yourself in the sensory wonders of your garden, so make sure there’s room for it. A cosy corner with seating or a sheltered pergola can give you the space to enjoy your surroundings without detracting from natural elements. Why not create an area to practice meditation and mindfulness in your garden?

Decorative elements

Diversity in sounds, scents, sights and textures is crucial to create a special sensory space. However, as miraculous as our Earth is, nature can’t do it all on its own.

Introducing decorative elements can elevate your outdoor space and create a warm balance between natural and artificial. Hanging outdoor garden lights along fences or installing trickling water features can be a great finishing touch to the surrounding natural beauty.

Encourage wildlife

Creatures big and small bring such incredible sights and sounds to your garden, so think about how you can welcome them and help them flourish. This can be done with the right selection of flowers, trees and shrubs, as well as creating a healthy ecosystem that can sustain them. Keeping a sense of wilderness in your space can be great for both you and your visitors.

Consider accesibility

A sensory garden is no use if it’s not accessible. Whether it’s designed with your children, elderly relatives or the whole family in mind, make sure everyone can enjoy it as much as possible. Elements such as paths, steps, ramps and steep gradients need to be designed to be accessible.

As well as acting as a pleasant personal retreat, a rich tapestry of sensory experiences often stand as therapeutic sanctuaries that not only captivate the senses but also promote holistic well-being. Their harmonious blend of sights, scents, textures, and sounds creates a serene haven for relaxation, stress relief, and cognitive rejuvenation. From individuals seeking respite from urban bustle to those with specific sensory needs, these gardens offer a refuge where nature’s embrace nurtures both body and mind.