Has London gotta lotta bottle? – or too many garks?

The Urban Dictionary gives these meanings for ‘bottle’:
1)Transparent Container, usually for liquids that is narrow, circular-based, mostly handle-less and with an ever-narrowing top, where the opening is found.
2) To hit someone on the head with a glass bottle, smashing the bottle in the process.
3) Guts or determination
4) Female with no volouptous features, in comparison to 1)
So ‘Yes’ for its urban space. But ‘No’ for its many garks.

A vacant London gark

7 thoughts on “Has London gotta lotta bottle? – or too many garks?

  1. Adam Hodge

    Fortunately for Hyde Park, the only urban space I visit regularly in London , the ‘garky’ bits are considerably more interesting and delightful in their plantings then that described in the para on the link to Garks..

    ‘Mass plantings of Prunus ‘Otto Luyken’, Rosa ‘Frau Dagmar Hastrup’ and Berberis stenophylla provide a gardenesque experience, with their evergreen leaves, flowers and berries, but the scale is non-domestic. One cannot have an intimate experience with a block of low-maintenance ground cover, any more than one can with a Corbusian residential tower block’

    Surely Gardens in a park are do-able, as areas of Hyde Park demonstrate!

  2. Tom Turner Post author

    The Central London parks all work well socially but many of the suburban parks are amazingly vacant.
    With regard to the planting in Hyde Park, it has been looking much better since Colvin and Moggridge were appointed as consultants (at about the time my paragraph on Garks was written) but I hold to the view that it would be even better if the garden area south-east of the Serpentine was fenced, gated and managed by two old ladies. Of course it must be freely open to the public but they should have to open a gate to gain entry and on their best behaviour when inside the garden.

  3. Adam Hodge

    I wonder if the vacant suburban parks might be more popular if interesting walks through or beside floriferous borders/plantings were created. This could be supplemented by an expanse of accessible water, which can be walked around, like the Serpentine.

    In Oxford the University Parks have taken this approach with delightful plantings along the south & west perimeter. Most people visiting the park make their way straight down to the Cherwell and walk along the river then along the south or north perimeter path. SO, water and flowers in balance with open space seems to work !

  4. Tom Turner Post author

    Yes to water. Every outdoor recreation survey I have seen shows it to be the most popular ‘attractor’. And yes to flowers as well. but I think garden-type planting work better in secluded gardens than in open parks. The Victorians had a good idea regarding the use of ‘carpet bedding’ which is often in scale with public parks.

  5. Thomas Mickey

    I visited Elizabeth Park in Hartford, Connecticut, the insurance capital of the US, during June and the Park’s Rose Festival. At one end of the Park I saw a carpet bed arrangement of annuals in the shape of the American flag. Victorian carpet-bedding is well and alive in the US!

  6. Christine

    Just a little reading on the subject of carpet bedding is sufficient to revive the enthusiasm for its practice and to wish to see new gardens which advance the art in modern ways.
    [ http://www.gardenvisit.com/history_theory/library_online_ebooks/tom_turner_english_garden_design/gardenesque_style_floral_carpet_bedding ]

    A few examples:
    [ http://goldenagegardens.blogspot.com/2009/04/carpet-bedding-rhs-wisley.html ]

    [ http://www.gardenvisit.com/garden/queen_victoria_park ]

    and some wonderful photographs taken at Stanley Park.

    [ http://www.flickr.com/photos/vancouvervisuals/3760315397/ ]


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