Garden #4 - MASP Students - Perdi Fenn's Urban Garden

Perdi Fenn's Urban Garden

Garden #4 - 3rd March 2020

On Tuesday we met at 7 Rhoda Street where we had a chat with Perdi Fenn about her urban garden. We sat around a table in the middle of the garden. She introduced herself as an artist, before practising as a landscape architect for 14 years. Her enthusiasm led the conversation, and she answered our questions before we even asked them. We found many connections between this garden and her approach in relation to the garden at 43 Lewisham Way.

  • There is always something there and everything is telling you a story.

  • Plants are indicators of the soil condition

  • Being at the garden you meet everybody: it is a social space

  • The garden is for humans and non-humans

  • Maintenance is everything: You need to choose where you put your energy

  • Periphery of the site is important for infrastructure / resource for wildlife

  • Plants outside that can tell people what’s inside the garden

  • Plants tipping over to inform the community

  • Chelsea Fringe Festival: an opportunity to invite the community to the garden. Someone brought a microscope and we can see the micro and macro scales of the garden

  • The gardens dictated by what is here and what was here.

  • Garden as a cultural space, it relates to the history of the neighbourhood

  • Infrastructure:

    • Decide where the plants are going to be (best growing site)

    • Use of the tables to tell people how to use the site and direct their behaviour - How light move across the site

    • Water and compost should be near the planting site

    • No waste goes away

  • Leaving gaps for the unexpected; not over-design

  • Plants will find their way over the gaps

  • When you’re growing plants, things are out of control, and that’s the excitement: contaminate the outside

  • Nature is about timing

  • Soil is the gut of the garden

  • Not flat landscape: the trees change the space beyond recognition

  • Connection with the site celebrated with production

  • Important to produce something and share with the community