The benefits of horticulture on health have long been recognised and it’s a theme that naturally crops up across the whole festival. In the Live Well Zone, however, we shine a spotlight firmly on the role that gardening and gardens play in our health and wellbeing and develop this still further by exploring how mobilising gardening and craft communities can achieve inspiring results. This zone shows off the natural creativity of gardeners and we think you’ll be impressed.
Join Cultivating Learning and Nature, who promote positive mental health through horticulture, traditional craft and ecological work, as they showcase a range of ecological exhibits.
As well as health benefits, gardening can help nature too. Visit Worcestershire Wildlife Trust's stand to discover how you can go wild in your garden, window box or even roadside verge by promising to Pledge a Patch. Get started by planting your very own patch at the festival, make a bug hotel or pine-cone bird feeder. The Worcestershire Beekeepers are also on hand to show you the inner workings of a hive, with live bees to see and local honey to buy. If you have ever wanted to keep bees yourself then pop on over and chat to the experts they can advise on everything you could ever need to know.
Work of Heart Garden
Clare Young, a Gloucestershire widow, is creating a knitted garden at RHS Malvern Spring Festival in memory of her husband Ken who passed away in 2015. The garden will help raise £50,000 for the Sue Ryder Leckhampton Court Hospice which helped care for him and assisted in Clare’s battle with anxiety and depression since his death.
Clare Young, supported by a team of friends, crafters and community groups has started work on the full-size show garden installation for the RHS Malvern Spring Festival called the ‘Work of Heart’ garden.
You can read more about Clare's story and how you can support her by reading 'Weaving World's First Knitted Garden for RHS Malvern Spring Festival' or by visiting the dedicated website for the Work of Heart Garden.
Health and Wellbeing Garden
Our specially commissioned permanent Health & Wellbeing Garden, designed by Jekka McVicar VMH, was launched at last year’s festival and its journey from concept to delivery was documented on BBC2’s Gardeners’ World. It is an aromatic herb garden, the purpose of which was to create an oasis of peace and tranquillity whilst offering learning on the health properties of the plants. Come and see how it looks a year on and enjoy its restorative powers for yourself.
With thanks to Hartley Botanic for supplying the glasshouse.
Hellens Garden Festival & Recycled Community Art
Our neighbours at Hellens Garden Festival are creating a unique community art installation in the form of a ‘mandala’ which will be constructed purely from recycled materials such as plastic bottle tops and natural finds. The mandala (meaning ‘circle’ in Sanskrit), designed by Kate Raggett, will grow into being during the course of the festival and carries an important reminder about sustainability in our throw-away society. Hellens Garden Festival raises funds for St Michael’s Hospice in Hereford, proof once more of the how horticulture and health are intrinsically linked.
Take time out at the festival to relax and pamper yourself at our onsite pop-up spa provided by Treatment Tents.
Treat your self to an Indian Head Massage, Reflexology, Ayurvedic Facial or a Back, Neck & Shoulder Massage. Treatments take place in cosy dome tent, lasting 30 minutes and cost £25. Book your treatment when you arrive at the festival.
Based locally in Powick, Link Nurseries sells plants to the public but is a community focused horticultural centre offering educational and therapeutic services for local people including those recovering from mental ill-health. It is run by Warwickshire College Group and supported by the Bransford Trust and the Friends of Link Nurseries. Come and get ideas from the small raised bed displays created by their Well Bean Garden Club.
Children's Great Exhibition
Little ones will love to explore the Children's Great Exhibition with hands on activities to keep them entertained and lots to see in the art competition.
Explore cutting edge Victorian technology with Cheltenham Science Group. Some of the most important and, at the time, technologically advanced ideas from at the Great Exhibition are coming to RHS Malvern. Discover steam engines, hydraulic platforms, microscopy and looms - you can even take away your own hand woven pattern.
We're celebrating everything that is great about Malvern and are inviting youngsters to create a work of art to showcase everything they love about the town in The Great Exhibition Children's Art Competition supported by Malvern Hills District Council. This can be showcased as a painting, drawing, sculpture, poem and in many other creative ways. To find out more about the competition and to enter visit our Compete page.