Landscaping and Biodiversity
A mixture of bulbs, herbaceous perennials, fruit trees and shrubs growing in the landscaping around the gallery encourages bio-diversity by creating habitats and foraging for insects, birds and small mammals.
Our three new gardens, around the Sculpture Terrace, the Alex Bernstein Orchard Garden, and the Art Garden focus on native species; each has different conditions - dry shade, damp shade and full sun. The Landscape & Sustainability Technician and Art Garden volunteers manage and maintain the beautiful landscapes and are supported further by Jo Malone London, who provides sponsorship and monthly staff volunteers to support our programme.
We work with the Friends of Whitworth Park to maintain their lovely central flower bed; have planted a 2000sqm perennial wildflower meadow, just completed the first phase of our Community Garden Hub to encourage our neighbours to engage with horticulture, and in partnership with City of Trees have planted 200 whips of different native trees.
The Art Garden has been designed as a rain garden which allows water from hard landscaping to flow towards our planting beds reducing the amount of irrigation required, while a drip irrigation system for newly planted areas greatly reduces the amount of water needed for establishment. Our Community Garden Hub will use a rainwater butt, and enable us to collect grey waste water to irrigate the plants we grow, while our green roofs actively use rainwater run-off.
We aim to raise awareness of wildlife and nature, and to connect our visitors with the importance of green space in an urban environment. We contribute to the University Estates Biodiversity Group, and to a tree replacement strategy across campus. Staff beekeepers look after a top-bar apiary on the roof of the gallery and we actively promote this and the importance of pollinators in the environment. In developing the new landscaping, we have thought carefully about the impact on our collections, and taken advice from an entomologist and landscape consultant to ensure we don’t attract bugs into our stores.