Bedding loses out as meadows and herbaceous plants take on Olympic roles

Bedding growers may have missed out on supplying the London 2012 Olympic parklands.

The preferred approach is to provide colour through wild flower meadows and in the Olympic Village by using herbaceous plants. Village landscaping sub-contractors are currently procuring herbaceous plant material.

Olympic Delivery Authority (ODA) parklands and public realm project sponsor John Hopkins said: "The main village contractors will be procuring a large quantity of herbaceous plant material, mainly in the form of plugs, for incorporation into the village parklands. For example, more than 30,000 native species plugs have already been procured for the village wetlands.

"On the Olympic Park, the ODA has worked with our landscape architects, ecologists, horticulturists and Sheffield University in particular to achieve colourful, flowering meadows for the games and legacy that will not only be spectacular visually but good for wildlife also. The meadows are an innovative and very cost-effective method of achieving colourful habitats over large areas."

BPOA marketing committee chairman Ian Riggs said: "In 2008 the BPOA approached the ODA, which made it clear that bedding plant schemes were not to be considered for the London Olympic Park, instead to favour tree-planted and wild flower meadow parks. Given the long history of innovatively designed bedding features, this was very disappointing."

CONSTRUCTION PROGRESS

Parklands: The large wetland bowl in the north of the park is close to completion, with riverside spectator lawns, timber seating, frog ponds, loggeries, wild flower meadows, woodlands and footpaths in place.

Olympic Village: More than three-quarters of the residential plots are structurally complete, as well as the shell of the Chobham Academy school. Work is well underway on the creation of the Village wetlands and landscaping.


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