Embracing the idea of accessible gardens, especially for those with spinal injuries, Horatio’s Garden is the worthy winner of this year’s RHS Chelsea Flower Show …
The space, designed by Charlotte Harris and Hugo Bugg (of Harris Bugg Studio), is designed so it can be enjoyed from a bed or wheelchair.
The garden is named after a charity founded in 2011, in memory of Horatio Chapple, who was researching a garden at the spinal injuries unit where he volunteered. The charity has built several gardens with the aim to eventually have one in all eleven NHS spinal injury units in the UK.
The RHS Chelsea 2023 garden will be relocated to Sheffield, to the Royal Spinal Injuries Centre. The garden showcases the key qualities of these special spaces while incorporating influences from the Sheffield region.
Designed to be an immersive, restorative haven, Horatio’s Garden is the antithesis of a clinical hospital environment. Tactile stone cairns symbolise wayfinding and encouragement when paths are unclear, while a water feature and an organic garden pod (for physical and emotional shelter) are other key features. A carved stone commemorates Horatio Chapple, the inspiration for all Horatio’s Gardens. As for shrubs, they were selected for extended seasonal interest, and include Rosa mutablis, Hydrangea petiolaris and Aruncus ‘Horatio’ – essential in every Horatio’s Garden.