The Physic Garden by Thorbjörn Andersson with Sweco Architects, Novartis Campus, Basel, Switzerland. Have you ever wondered what secrets have been hiding in monastery gardens or at least wanted to experience the mystique that they bring? If your answer is yes, you will probably want to visit The Physic Garden by Thorbjörn Andersson and see the main features of this historically important garden that — even when they were inaccessible — held significance for the community. Located in Basel, Switzerland, this simple but effective garden has a lot to show. It is designed to be part of the Novartis Campus and to describe the work of the company, which discovers, develops, and markets innovative products to prevent and cure diseases, ease suffering, and enhance the quality of life. Over 2,800 square meters, Thorbjörn Andersson and the team have created a garden that exudes history, symbolism, color, and rhythm and leaves space for reflection, relaxation, and education.
The Physic Garden
The Physic Garden is formally designed, rectangular shaped and semi-enclosed. It consists of two parts: the central garden, which is divided into strips, and the space around the central garden, which also has a special symbolic meaning. The whole garden is permeated with symbolism, so it is not surprising that every plant and every used material have been placed here for a reason. Strips located in the central part separate flowerbeds, where different types of plants used in pharmacy are sown.The central garden is surrounded by a wall of granite as a kind of protection and psychological barrier, reflecting the mystery and latency of former monastery gardens that the designer is trying to preserve in this space. The surrounding area — called the grove — is linked to the Celtic people and their use of wood for medical purposes. There are wooden structures for seating, and ginkgo trees fill the area.
Walking trough the floral carpet at the Physic Garden
Over the flowerbeds are two zig-zag walking paths that also symbolically represent “a walk through the garden”. Walkers can view the plants from above. If you want to learn something about them or even explore and study them, you can read the name of each plant on signage throughout the flowerbeds.Related Articles:
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The garden also has water elements through an artistic shaped amphora and a place for seating in the form of a wooden pavilion with parts such as bookshelves, a hedge with different heights around the garden, and movable flowerpots.Richness of color through seasonal changes in plants Plants and their use for medicinal purposes are certainly the most important part of this project. Many are used for the treatment of diseases, in cosmetics, or in scientific research. All the plants that were used in this project can be divided into different categories. Annuals, perennials, roses, bulbs, trees, hedges, and shrubs each bring beauty in their own way as the seasons change. In the spring, there are purple, white, and yellow colors, thanks to Croccuss sativus, Heleborus niger and Narcissus pseudonarcissus. Summer brings the ornamental grasses’ playful colors, and in autumn you can enjoy the leaves change from green to yellow. What plants were used? The medicinal plants in this garden are Digitalis lanata, Digitalis purpurea, Centaurea cyanus, Papaver rhoeas, Sylumub marianum, Colchicum autumnale, Crocus sativus, Althaea oficinalis, Lavandula agnustifolia, Artemisia absinthium, Iris vericolor ,Verbena officinalis, Helleborus niger,Galanthus navalis, Aqulegia vulgaris , Lilium tigrinum, and many more. Click here to see a 360° virtual tour of the garden Ethnopharmacology and landscape architecture a new approach of designing Can medicinal science merge with landscape architecture in the future to produce more of these simple but useful gardens? Or was it already done a long time ago in the carefully preserved monastery gardens that served as inspiration for this project? The fact is that these gardens were made for a reason, so maybe each of us could make such a garden and thereby connect with nature by studying its benefits through treatment with plants. Recommended Reading:
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Article by Amela Djurakovac Return to HomepagePublished in Blog