Blooming London

Sat, Mar 20, 2010

Climate Change, Trees

Every day – depending on what our unpredictable English weather delivers – I visit either Russell or Gordon Square located in the heart of Bloomsbury to get my daily green fix. They are located very near to where I work at the University of London and are like a magnet, drawing me out of the office. This week the sun shone and the mild weather brought crowds of people to enjoy these fabulous open spaces in the heart of the bustling city. The spring flowers are looking glorious and it is just the best way to spend my lunch break.

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Connecting with nature on a daily basis is very easy to do in London as there are over 2,500 open spaces. To help people find these oases of green, the London Parks and Garden Trust are compiling an easily accessible database which locates them by area.It is part of a three year project that is evolving – so far 421 of the sites are available on their new site and the rest will be added to over next 6-12 months. By 2011, the website will contain further information on each site, including contemporary and historical photos.http://www.londongardensonline.org.uk/

Neither Russell or Gordon Square are included yet but another favourite of mine is – Bedford Square which apparently is ‘the best and most complete Georgian square left in Bloomsbury’. Sadly it is only available for private use but this doesn’t stop me peering through the railings to look at the delightful summer house that is inside –http://www.londongardensonline.org.uk/gardens-online-record.asp?ID=CAM006

London Parks and Gardens Trust aims to increase the knowledge and appreciation of parks, squares, gardens, cemeteries, churchyards that form London’s open space network.This idea will hopefully encourage more engagement with nature and an appreciation of just how threatened some of our plants are by the changing climate. Whilst enjoying the beautiful trees in Russell Square this week, I noticed that two will sadly be cut down in just a few days. The Whitebeam and London Plane are considered unsafe but the good news is that Camden plans to re-plant with new specimens in the Autumn. Planting trees that will adapt to climate change in the City is very important and there is a great web-site to help with this at http://www.right-trees.org.uk/

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Another way to enjoy London’s open spaces is to get involved with helping to maintain them. Green gyms are springing up all over the city.They are a great way to keep fit and help preserve the environment by getting your hands dirty.http://www2.btcv.org.uk/display/greengym

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This post was written by:

- who has written 863 posts on My Climate Change Garden.

I am not an experienced gardener - more of an enthusiastic amateur who learns by trial and error and is keen to "manage" the effects of the weather on my garden. Writing this blog is my passion and I hope that it will continue to grow, allowing global gardeners to communicate about the effects of climate change on our plants and the future of our gardens.

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