About the Gardens at CHOP

Special Places for Patients and Families

In addition to offering patients and families a natural space where they can be invigorated and find peace, the gardens at Children's Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP) provide opportunities for community engagement, hands-on learning, educational activities, and cooking demonstrations. They also provide a range of fun activities for patients and families, including Gardens Books and Cooks Series, Garden Passport, movie nights and seasonal activities.

From therapeutic and healing spaces to green rooftops, our five distinctive gardens function as colorful, fragrant and living extensions of our mission to help all children reach their potential.

Sea Garden at the Seashore House

The Sea Garden, also known as the “therapeutic garden,” is located on the third floor of Children’s Seashore House. The garden was designed to reflect the healing and calmness embodied in the sand and sea. The theme is integrated throughout in the decorative scrims and a recording playing the sound of waves. Numerous mobile planters have been installed that enable patients to participate in horticulture activities, offering a hands-on connection with the natural environment and the life cycle.

The Sea Garden is home to various types of herbs and vegetables, including sweet potatoes herbs, basil, peppermint, oregano, thyme, pole and snap beans, lettuce, cucumbers, eggplant, sugar snap peas, and so much more. There are also many different colorful flowers. Patients and staff members from occupational therapy, child life and nursing water, prune and plant alongside volunteers from the Pennsylvania Horticultural Society. The herbs and veggies are more than just tasty; occupational therapists use them to help patients develop meal-preparation and cooking skills. The Sea Garden offers many outdoor therapy options for children and teens at CHOP not available before. Our garden library houses books about nature, gardens, vegetables and healthy eating.

The Sea Garden also hosts special annual events like the great tomato harvest and recipe contents, as well as seasonal events and activities. Our "carecrows" look out over the garden with care, dressed in seasonal attire and flowers for hair.

Karabots Health and Wellness Garden

The Nicholas and Athena Karabots Pediatric Care Center in West Philadelphia has an active community vegetable garden. The Health and Wellness Garden, created in partnership with America’s Credit Unions and Credit Unions for Kids, promotes existing community connections and creates opportunities for hands-on learning, while sharing nutritious food and developing a continuing appreciation for healthy life choices. The space hosts educational activities, community events, and cooking demonstrations based on what’s in season. Surplus food is distributed to Early Head Start families through CHOP’s partnership with the Enterprise Center, a community development organization.

With the help of hundreds of volunteers, the Health and Wellness Garden has about 1,200 feet of raised beds with plants, including squash, kale, cucumbers and sweet peppers; herbs, including rosemary, oregano, lavender and basil; eggplant, sweet potatoes, purple sweet potatoes and multiple varieties of lettuces and tomatoes. Volunteers also planted a fruit tree orchid in the garden, which will produce apples and other delicious fruits.

Treetop Terrace at the Buerger Center

Created with patients and families in mind, the Treetop Terrace atop the Buerger Center for Advanced Pediatric Care located on the Raymond G. Perelman Campus is a prime example of green architecture. Its 14,000 square feet were designed to represent Philadelphia: Planter boxes and garden beds are laid out in a grid that represents the city, and the water feature running through the middle simulates the Schuylkill River. Physical and occupational therapists use the garden’s curbs and multiple surfaces to help patients learn to navigate various environments.

Barbara Brodsky Healing Garden

The Barbara Brodsky Healing Garden, located outside the Main Building Food Court, serves as a sanctuary for families and staff members experiencing stress. Patients, families as well as the public can enjoy the creatively landscaped plaza gardens on the Raymond G. Perelman Campus on the south side of Civic Center Boulevard. Peaceful pathways wind through the 2.6-acre plaza’s medicinal garden, perennial garden and grove. Gentle sounds of splashing and bubbling emanate from three water features.

Gardens on the Raymond G. Perelman Campus

Patients, families as well as the public can enjoy the creatively landscaped plaza gardens on the Raymond G. Perelman Campus on the south side of Civic Center Boulevard. Peaceful pathways wind through the 2.6-acre plaza’s medicinal garden, perennial garden and grove. Gentle sounds of splashing and bubbling emanate from three water features.