Urban Physic Garden
Client: The Urban Physic Garden
Site: London, UK
From wild seeds in vacant lots and domestic herbs found in back gardens to exotic species gathered around the world, plants have been used to cure all kinds of ills: whether by acting as traditional remedies in teas and tonics to playing a key part in the latest cutting-edge pharmaceutical treatments.
The Urban Physic Garden (UPG) is an imaginative urban garden shaped by the hospital and pharmacy, that focuses on medicinal plants and herbs that heal. The garden emerges in meanwhile spaces – healing derelict sites, bringing together communities and providing a platform for artists, designers, gardeners and health practitioners across a diverse range of backgrounds and cultures. The physic garden is a centre for lively debate, providing a living forum that brings people together to explore the role of plants in science, health, well- being and the environment.
In the Summer of 2011, Wayward developed the first iteration of the Urban Physic Garden – transforming a derelict site in central London, with the help of nearly 200 volunteers. The UPG became the subject of international press and was shortlisted for the Royal Institute of British Architect’s Forgotten Spaces competition. Icon Magazine included the UPG in their Highlights of 2011, and Monocle Magazine featured the garden in their review of the Best Urban Farm Projects.
Documentation of the UPG was exhibited at Somerset House in London, and is currently touring Vietnam, Thailand and India with the British Council as part of the exhibition, Everything Forever Now. The Wellcome Collection have commissioned a future iteration of the Urban Physic Garden in London, and further projects are being developed with Northwestern Memorial Hospital, Chicago, and The Edinburgh Botanical Garden