Although the proposed new Garden Bridge in London continues to attract controversy, well-known English garden designer Dan Pearson has revealed his planting plans for the bridge.
The bridge, designed by Heatherwick Studios, will feature five different landscape themes along its length. North Bank near the existing law courts of Temple will have show a formal style, using plants such as figs, roses, flowering shrubs, and under-plantings of bulbs, grasses, flowering perennials and annuals.
Along the bridge, flowering climbers will twine through the railings, disguising the edges of the bridge and trailing down towards the water.
As you walk southwards to South Bank, the planting will become looser and more informal. There the plants will include those that were once common along the river when it was a marshland, such as willow, honeysuckle, birch and primroses. These will be regularly coppiced so that there’s constant regeneration.
Dan Pearson has selected plants that can cope with the extreme and exposed position above the Thames, as well as the shallow, 400-600mm deep soils, eg most of the planned 270 trees will be mutli-stemmed rather than single-trunk specimens so they are better at withstanding strong wind gusts.
The Garden Bridge is subject to a judicial review next month, with those against the project contending that council did not properly consider the effect on the surrounding historic buildings, and that there is insufficient evidence explaining how the project will be maintained over the coming decades.