Some 300,000 bulbs and annuals have been planted by about 100 community groups around Canberra in what’s called the 2020 Floriade reimagined event.
The official annual Floriade event has been cancelled for the first time in its 33 year history because of the Covid-19 health pandemic. Because the bulbs had already been ordered, these were offered to community groups.
Usually it’s Commonwealth Park that’s a patchwork of colour from September, but this year there will be masses of community plantings as not for profit organisations, universities and hospitals get in on the act.
Getting kids involved
Childcare centres have opted to be involved. At the Woden Valley Childcare Centre, Nature Pedagogy Leader, Gabby Millgate created a book about bulbs and Floriade which the group read together before they began collecting soil and planting bulbs.
Half of the soil used in their floral display was collected from their Narragunnawali Garden, where their chickens, ducks, hay, leaves, water and worms help to create wonderful compost year-round. In this way leaders can ensure sustainable practice is embedded with the children in a meaningful way.
Hughes Preschool has also got on board with the planting community spirit. The youngest members of the Hughes Community enjoyed visiting some of oldest residents at the nearby St Andrews Village aged care facility and getting some bulb planting tips advice .
Students have planted their Floriade bulbs and annuals at the preschool, and at the Hughes Shops. The children have been told whenever they walk past the garden beds, they need to say hello to the plants or sing them a song to help them grow.
Hope springs eternal
In suburban Barton, the Salvation Army is spelling out the word HOPE at their main headquarters. This is a word of significance to the organisation as well as a nod to the community’s resilience through the current COVID climate.
From mid-September through 11 October Floriade: Reimagined will happen with a virtual marketplace (where people can shop online for wares similar to those offered at the annual Floriade event in Commonwealth Park) available on floriadeaustralia.com Also offered will be a range of virtual (online) workshops, talks and performances and a one- night NightFest offering.