River of Flowers is a nonprofit, eco-social enterprise working with
communities to create wildflower areas in urban landscapes as trails or ‘rivers’ of floral forage for bees, butterflies and other insect pollinators. Since River of Flowers recommends planting for habitat too, we include wild flowering trees as well as wildflowers, and advise on growing ‘urban meadows’ on buildings (rooftops, balconies), along lines of transport (pavements, roadside verges, roundabouts, towpaths, waterways, railways), in open spaces (city parks, urban woodland, playgrounds, playing fields, housing estates, cemeteries, community and private gardens), with food (urban orchards, city farms, allotments) and on vacant lots such as brownfield sites.
Wild verge © River of Flowers
In spring 2014, River of Flowers will be working with different organisations and community groups in Manchester, as well as in Bristol and York, thanks to support from Artists Project Earth, a collective of artists, scientists, journalists, environmentalists, film makers and authors, who believe passionately in raising awareness about what climate change means to the world and in educating and helping people to overcome the obstacles to achieving a low carbon lifestyle. Greening the city is one way to do this. Plants cool, clean, soften and beautify the urban landscape, and make it fit for people. Growing wildflowers and wild flowering trees makes it fit for pollinators.
Our partners in Manchester, include Manchester Art Gallery, the start organisation of the River of Flowers Manchester, which already sports beehives and a wildflower meadow on its roof and will be hosting the first all-white bee pasture in the UK and an orchard of wild crab apple trees in May 2014. The trees will eventually be taken to spaces in Moss Side and Levenshulme. The Manchester Museum, Whitworth Art Gallery, Manchester University and Manchester Metropolitan University have sites along the Oxford Road corridor. Avenues and Alleyways, will be adding wildflowers to the floral trail created through the alleyways close to Whitworth Park, the Friends of Whitworth Park will be planting more wildflower areas in the park, Mosscider via the Moss Gardens and the Anchor Café in Mosside, and Incredible Edible Levenshulme will be providing sites for the crab apple orchard and it’s understorey of native wildflowers. The River of Flowers Manchester is here.
River of Flowers would like to hear from community groups and other
organisations in Manchester, which would like to create wild areas at their sites and join the River of Flowers. Contact us here: firstname.lastname@example.org if you would like to know more.
See also Envirolution UK - a community cooperative in Greater Manchester whose next festival is Saturday 24th May.
Watch the River of Flowers video