Tower of London 'Superbloom' project for Queen's platinum jubilee was developed on Sheffield estates
Green fingered Sheffield gardens expert Nigel Dunnett is helping transform the Tower of London, for the Queen.
Nigel, who is a professor at the University of Sheffield’s Department of Landscape Architecture, designed the seed mix for a project called ‘Superbloom’, which is being run to celebrate the platinum jubilee next year.
It will see millions of flowers encircle the tower next summer, and has seen Nigel work with Historic Royal Palaces.
A total of 20 million carefully selected seeds are being sown in the tower’s moat, to create a sea of continuously evolving flowers from June to September 2022.
Nigel, who has met the Queen in the past, said: “We hope that the effect of being surrounded by a sea of colourful, sparkling and vibrant flowers will release feelings of pure joy in visitors – it will be such a powerful, emotional and celebratory experience.”
“We’ve undertaken a lot of testing and trials to ensure that we deliver dramatic, beautiful impressionistic blends of colours, a long and continuous sequence of flowering and a wonderful place for pollinating insects.”
In summer 2021, Nigel led extensive tests at Sheffield-based social enterprise Green Estate, to ensure the planting delivers a long and continuous sequence of flowering for visitors to enjoy.
Nigel added: “the Tower of London ‘Superbloom’ has its roots in the Department of Landscape Architecture at the University of Sheffield and very strong Sheffield connections. It's the latest in a long succession of 'designed superblooms' arising out of research in the Department.”
“This research, which developed reliable designed meadow seed mixes, was originally applied in parks and housing areas as well as along highways in Sheffield.
“Demand for these seed mixes grew to be so high, that I formed the University of Sheffield company 'Pictorial Meadows'. It’s exciting that Pictorial Meadows and Green Estate will be closely involved in the delivery of the moat project.”
“The event has been in the planning and design stages for over a year, but it is only now that we are able to talk about it. Suddenly it has become real, with the first works already starting in the moat.”