Almost 2000 years ago, Hippocrates wrote in his medical treaty '' Airs, Waters and Places '', about the importance to understand nature's processes and to work with these processes instead of against it. If we ignore nature, it creates discomfort and disaster for human health and well-being, but if we acknowledge nature, and incorporate nature's processes to function naturally within our living systems, humans and nature can both benefit from the services that ecosystems provide enjoying health and well-being.
why natural gardens ?
Natural gardens value the ecosystems and processes of nature as nature intended it, benefiting both natural and human processes.
Natural gardens offer a practical way to create landscapes, and in many cases can be grown from seeds, making the establishment of the garden not only cost effective, but also visually rewarding in a short period of time.
Natural gardens are more tolerant to local climatic conditions and adapted to rain patterns, reducing the need for watering and general maintenance.
Natural gardens are designed to reduce onsite stormwater runoff and support rainwater interception and water infiltration into the landscape, by reducing impermeable surfaces and shaping water attenuation areas.
Visually, natural gardens provide an unpretentious setting within the context of its bigger surrounds and provides habitat for bird and insect life.
Natural gardens create pleasant micro-climates which enhance quality of living. Natural gardens also reduce the amount of garden maintenance and consist of dynamic systems continuously evolving and changing, in contrast to the conventional confined and manicured green space.
No space is too big or too small to become a natural garden.
In urban settings, natural gardens can play a crucial role and act as ecological corridors connecting green spaces. They can provide an opportunity to create bio-swales for improved on site urban water management so that surface water is not diverted out of the city in stormwater pipes, but rather used on site. Natural gardens, through the use of plants, can reduce the heat island effect and reduce the heat of pavements and facades of buildings through the use of planting while at the same time aesthetically providing a contrast to and softening of the concrete spaces. Natural gardens combined with productive gardens, can transform the reflective heat trap surfaces of city roofs into cool, soft and productive green spaces.