Traffic calming and reducing antisocial behaviour are two unexpected uses for giant floral planters – but ones which are becoming increasingly popular in towns and cities across the UK.
And now, preventing fly-tipping has become another excellent reason to use flowers rather than ugly bollards!
Manchester City Council has been working with Plantscape for a number of years and its latest order was for two huge one metre square planters with faux gold rims to be positioned at either end of an alleyway which was attracting people who wanted to dump their rubbish illegally.
The planters, which weigh around 800 kilos when full of compost and water, were filled at Plantscape HQ with a range of winter blooms including polyanthus, along with ivy, heathers, scented plants such as lavender and spring flowering bulbs.
Another town which has found the Plantscape planters had the beneficial knock-on effect of reducing antisocial behaviour is Llanrwst in Conwy.
Its primary purpose in appointing Plantscape was to enhance its already attractive market square. But town clerk Ross Morgan said the displays had an unexpected bonus – a renewed pride in the town meant that vandalism and littering was reduced.
“Transforming the look of the square transformed people’s behavior, “ he said.
“Nothing was further from our minds. We wanted to give the square a more attractive feel. What we were finding the previous summer was that people were coming from nearby, such as Llandudno and Portmadog, seeing how attractive the square was and making a point of coming back another day for a few hours. Cafes put seats outside and over the Easter weekend it was so busy I don’t think you could have got another person on the square.”
And Malton in Yorkshire has used Plantscape’s three tier planters to manage traffic and improve road safety.
Town clerk Gail Cook explained: “We have had some road safety and traffic issues in the Market Place and we had the idea to use the three tier planters this summer to trial a new layout. The Market Place has limited marked pedestrian routes, and by using these we’ve created a natural walk way for pedestrians. This gives them right of way instead of vehicles.
“In previous years, the area where we placed them actually encouraged inconsiderate parking and a short cut for vehicles to race through the Market Place. By using the three tier planters in the new configuration we have cut off this short cut and stopped the issue.”
· Plantscape operations manager Mat Davison and sales executive Christine Redfern prepare to help Manchester fight fly tipping with flowers