In March 2018, Citizen Sense hosted a public Phyto-sensor workshop and walk that explored air quality plants in the Low Emission Neighbourhood (LEN) of the City of London. The event was held in conjunction with the Museum of London as part of the City Now, City Future exhibition (2017-2018).

In this air quality garden workshop and walk we explored explore vegetation that responds to or mitigates air pollution. The event involved first taking a tour of clean air gardens and demonstrator planters to view different air quality plants and planting schemes. We visited several sites near the Museum of London where air quality vegetation can be viewed, including the LEN Urban Garden Project, which is a demonstrator garden developed by the Museum of London to exhibit some of the air quality plants included in the Phyto-sensor toolkit.

After visiting air quality gardens in situ, the Phyto-sensor event returned to the Museum of London for a workshop where we tested the Phyto-sensor toolkit. We looked at citizen monitoring tools that can be used to measure air quality, including the Dustbox, and we developed ideas for clean air gardens in London and beyond that were incorporated into the final version of the Phyto-sensor toolkit. The toolkit is also available through the Museum of London website.

The Phyto-sensor event was developed by Jennifer Gabrys, Director of Citizen Sense. Additional contributors included Materials Designer Francesca Perona, who developed toolkit and workshop materials, and Landscape Designer Paul McGann of Grow Elephant, who developed the planters for the LEN Urban Garden Project. The event was developed as part of the Barbican Centre’s Open Fest for 2018.

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