Phoenix Gardens behind Centre Point

‘…The Phoenix Garden is the best-kept secret of London’s West End. Open daily, it provides a peaceful green retreat for local residents, workers and tourists all year round, and is a haven for a wide range of urban wildlife.

Created by local volunteers in 1984 on the site of a former car park, this is the last of the Covent Garden community gardens. The location can be challenging, yet the Phoenix Garden demonstrates what can be achieved with ingenuity upon a bedrock of West End rubble. Phoenix Gardens…’.

Phoenix GardenPhoenix GardenPhoenix Garden

Trees give shade but are also interesting – birch, elder, fruit trees – and a gingko biloba. 

This is a haven of quiet – somewhere to escape from Oxford Street and just sit quietly for a while, or perhaps read the book bought at nearby Foyles.

Phoenix Garden Phoenix Garden

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Phoenix GardenPhoenix Garden

The garden is in a Victorian part of London, as you can see from the date on the warehouse, and also backs on to the Church of St Giles in the Fields.

A pond attracts dragonflies and damselflies, and, I assume, frogs to eat the snails. And there are clever planting ideas for the very dry ‘rubble bed’, created when the new centre was built. Plant your old parsnips and carrots, let them flower, and you have tall heads resembling Queen Anne’s Lace! And what about Phacelia Campanularis, salvias, and lychnis (instead of knautia macedonica) for fast-draining, hot and dry beds?

Phoenix Garden pondDragonfly in Phoenix Garden

Phacelia Campanularis

Phacelia Campanularis

Salvia Microphylla

Salvia Microphylla

Flowering parsnip

Flowering parsnip

The garden opens officially on Monday 19 June, but you can preview during Open Garden Squares Weekend – do visit!

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