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Sensory gardens at the Terre di Raffaello
The context in which the sensory gardens of the Terre di Raffaello Association are set is purely agricultural and naturalistic.
For that reason, such gardens were not conceived as the classic city sensory gardens, where the architectural part is preponderant (masonry planters, artificial sensory games that emit sounds or stimulate motor skills, etc.) but an attempt was made to achieve the same solicitations by using the natural elements in which the place is rich.
First step was to lower the gardens into the agricultural and riverine landscape.
Picking up on the sinuous forms that the river traces along its riverbed, creating gravel beaches, islands of vegetation, and pools of water, the idea was to design a pattern of paths that develop either in cultivated parts of the land or in clearings sown with wildflowers or within the riparian forest.
Interweaving paths identify small islands within which wheat or sorghum or flowering meadows are mowed to make way for each garden.
Gardens therefore have no lasting physical boundaries but it is the masses of crops drawn from time to time on the ground that give each garden its sense of protection.
The goal of the project is to create small sensory gardens among the crops (dedicated to the senses: smell, taste, hearing, touch and sight where to stop and have the various experiences)within the botanical park that itself becomes a large perceptual laboratory..
Indeed, walking among tall wheat or alfalfa or flowering meadows will stimulate people to take in the changing seasons, tall wheat will stimulate touch and wandering among it will stimulate a sense of discovery, then moving from the large sunny spaces of cultivated areas to the shady ones of riparian forest will arouse different feelings depending on the time of year you visit the park
Native trees and shrubs that are interesting for their changing colors throughout the year will be planted in the interweaving plots of paths, thus further stimulating visitors’ sense of observation.
Plants that produce rustling in the wind such as poplars or grasses will be used to stimulate hearing. The berry shrubs (hawthorns, blackthorns, cotoneasters, etc…) then will attract avifauna increasing the biodiversity of the place by creating an ever-changing soundscape.
The taste will be satisfied by the minor fruits that will be planted in the garden of the same name.
In the garden of touch herbaceous perennials and shrubs with tomentose or particularly rough leaves will highlight the tactile differences of various plants. Then reaching near the river, one can touch mosses, ferns and the water itself for a complete sensory experience.
Very important will be the olfactory part, which will be stimulated not only in the garden of the same name with aromatic and medicinal plants (rosemary, lavender, roses, thyme…) but also along the paths using fragrant shrubs (lilac, eleagnum, calicanthus…).
Sensory gardens are a fun educational tool for visitors to explore and learn about their senses and the many facets of nature.
The people of Terre di Raffaello and their guests will therefore be able to immerse themselves in the scents, shapes, sounds and colors of plants and natural elements such as water or wind. While in the garden, they are encouraged to touch, smell, taste and generally interact with their surroundings.
Book your visit to the sensory garden
Next visits are scheduled for APRIL, MAY and JUNE 2023 on SATURDAY and SUNDAY (every 2 weeks).
Each visit will last 2 hours.
Groups of max. 20 people are planned.
Start times for visits:
10:00 – 14:00 – 16:30