Gro Garden

Gro Garden is an art, wellbeing and greenspace located at the Queen Elizabeth University Hospital in Glasgow. The space has been designed to offer a welcoming environment for staff and visitors to relax in, and will play a role in reminding visitors of the importance of nature for in working and living sustainably.

A few years in the making, this large-scale project wouldn’t have been possible without the partnership of erz Landscape, Art Pistol Projects, The Conservation Volunteers, MM Groundworks and the team here at Glasgow Wood.

Photography thanks to Adam, one of our woodworkers, and Kevin Jones from erz.
See below for the full project.

“94% of adults in England who had visited a green and natural space in the previous 14 days agreed that spending time outdoors was good for their physical health. 92% agreed that it was also good for their mental health.”

People and Nature Survey, published by Nature England, May 2023

Designed by ERZ, built at Glasgow Wood

Rolf Roscher, erz. Landscape Director, said:

“The project brings a vacant area of ground in the QEUH campus into use and creates new habitat for wildlife. The works include new wildflower meadows, paths, tree planting and flexible grass space for events. The heart of the project is the ‘Gro Garden’ space – intended to become a new break out space for all users of the QEUH campus, to meet, sit quietly among plants and flowers, eat lunch or take part in organised activities.”

Behind the scenes: Adirondack chairs ready for delivery

The Oronsay bench before finishing

A timber module with screen being constructed in the workshop

The outdoor seating and green spaces

Constructed from recycled wood, the Gro Garden features a wide range of sheltered seating areas and growing planters, making it an ideal spot for relaxation and mindfulness. The space includes several of our stock products, including Adirondack chairs, Picnic benches and reclaimed whisky barrel water butts collecting rainwater, ready to use for watering plants. These water butts and timber-framed modules, which create the shelter and house the plants, feature across several of our community projects.

One special piece was commissioned and has now become one of our stock products: the Oronsay bench. It’s filled a space within our range for a simple bench with a wider seat panel, so we’d like to thank the erz team for approving this addition! As well as serving as a place to unwind, the Gro Garden has also been incorporated into wildlife walks and wellness activities which will help people learn about different tree and plant species and practice mindfulness.

Other valuable contributions

There’s also a new set of amazing art murals along the sides of the garden. Coordinated by Ali Smith of Art Pistol, the works represent sustainability and the wider healing power of nature. The artists commissioned were Christian Kerr, Eleanor Carlingford, Coll Hamilton, Eve McGlynn and Isaac Aldridge.

MW Groundworks had the contract for landscaping the site, removing rubble and flattening soil, path building, laying the wildflower turf, and sowing wildflower seeds. Woolgar Hunter also engineered the timber structures for the covered space.

Inside the Gro Garden, The Conservation Volunteers did all the planting, and will be maintaining the plants for a short time after the opening.

The Gro Garden is open to visitors from 8am – 6pm daily. If anyone would like to take part in the walks or activities, dates will be added to the NHSGGC website in due course (see our news article about the official opening for more information).

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