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​World-class Sensory Garden Coming to South Australia

SACARE is thrilled to announce plans to develop a world-class Sensory Garden located at “The Gums”, supported independent living facility in Salisbury, for SACARE clients and the wider community to enjoy.

Alongside “The Gums” Supported Independent Living facility in Salisbury, SACARE are excited to announce plans to develop a cutting-edge, outdoor therapy space, specially designed to appeal to the five senses and provide an interactive experience for everyone!

Don’t be fooled by the simplicity of the name Sensory Garden, these incredible spaces are anything but simple!

Unlike traditional gardens, designed for visual appeal, a sensory garden adjusts the elements and features within a garden space to allow for maximum engagement of all senses, and have been shown to improve overall quality of life for people with disabilities.

Alex Killey, SACARE's manager of social and behavioural therapies says that, "Time spent in nature can provide a range of health benefits mentally and physically. Our sensory garden encourages curious minds to explore the sensory garden to bring enjoyment. Sensory gardens have been shown to generate countless benefits to users, such as promoting physical movement, providing opportunities for social participation and presenting cognitive and physical challenges."

The SACARE Sensory Garden will be approximately 600 square metres, using both native and introduced species of plants, with a concrete walking track snaking throughout to allow wheelchair access to all areas. The space will allow residents and clients to participate in gardening activities, pick the edible plants to be used in meals or use the garden for relaxation purposes, satisfying everyone’s individual needs.

Comprising of five unique and engaging areas, we will reveal these closer to the date of the garden’s launch!

Along with a wonderful array of plants within the garden, for those who need to escape to a ‘happy place’, water features will provide a visual and auditory experience, for calming sensations. Outdoor speakers and light displays will also allow for an interactive experience.

Throughout the garden, floral and textural surfaces will provide stimulation for the hands and feet. Take the beautiful Lambs Ear for example!

(Lambs Ear providing a subtle multi-sensory experience, taken from
JamesDeMers: Pixabay)

Raised garden beds will allow clients in wheelchairs or seated positions to participate in garden maintenance, or taste and smell the array of edible and fragrant plant species. A wheelchair accessible work-shed will also provide clients the opportunity to participate in gardening activities.

(Wheelchair raised garden beds will be uniquely designed for The Gums Sensory Gardens in South Australia. Inspired by Terraform Wheelchair Accessible Garden by Collectif La Valise)

Following clinical advice from our Occupational Therapists, in order to encourage walks and community engagement along the Little Para River or to nearby Hollywood Plaza, we will not be implanting specific walking paths within the Sensory Garden itself.

Providing opportunities to experience life to the fullest is a core value of SACARE, and with the completion of the Sensory Garden, clients, families, friends and the wider community can enjoy the benefits and opportunities presented by the space. However, to avoid heavy traffic, outside access shall be by appointment only – but we encourage everyone to come and take a look once we have launched. More details will be announced soon.

We are looking for schools to work with us on building our sensory gardens. If you think your school loves nature and giving back to the community, we'd love to hear from you! Please email to express your interest.

To read more about SACARE's rehabilitation and supported independent living centre, 'The Gums' that will be launching at the end of 2018, click here .

If you are a service provider and would like to learn more or require a free referral pad for your practice please email