Back in 2014, the moat at the Tower of London was awash with red flowers as ceramic poppies were ‘planted’ to mark the centenary of the First World War. The empty landscape of the moat will be put to floral use once more next year, to mark The Queen’s Platinum Jubilee.
The iconic London landmark will be encircled by millions of colourful blooms in a ‘Superbloom’ display next summer, that will change with the seasons and act as a jubilee legacy to our historic, record-breaking Monarch.
20 million seeds will be sown in the expanse of the historic moat to attract bees, pollinators and seed-eating birds to the heart of the City, transforming it into a biodiverse space for enjoyment.
Early planting this summer – which you can see in these images – demonstrated that even a small number of flowers is successful at increasing the biodiversity in the moat.
Historic Royal Palaces is working with landscape architects Grant Associates, and University of Sheffield Professor of Planting Design and Urban Horticulture, Nigel Dunnett to bring the project to life, marking 70 years on the throne for Elizabeth II.
This isn’t the first time the Tower has marked a historic royal milestone: back in 1977, to mark Her Majesty’s Silver Jubilee, a garden display was put on to celebrate at the fortress.
From June 2022, visitors will be allowed access to the moat each day, allowing history and gardening fans alike to see the ‘Superbloom’ close up.
Tom O’Leary, Public Engagement Director, Historic Royal Palaces, said: “We’re thrilled to be bringing some joy, colour and spectacle to the Tower of London in 2022, in celebration of Her Majesty’s Platinum Jubilee. Everyone at the Tower is looking forward to sharing the project with everyone as it develops – and hoping for some luck with the weather next Spring!
“We hope that this thriving new landscape, surrounding London’s formidable fortress, will celebrate the power of nature to unite us all.”
Andrew Grant, Director at Grant Associates, said that the idea of the ‘highly significant transformation’ was ‘irresistible’, while Professor Nigel Dunnett of the University of Sheffield, commented they hoped the natural installation will ‘release feelings of pure liberated joy’ for visitors.
Seeds will be sown for the Superbloom in March, but preparations have already begun. Tickets for the display will go on sale from 6 December 2021 – we’ll share the link when it’s available!