Friday 19 January 2018

Pop-up garden returns to brighten bank holiday weekend


George Street garden
George Street garden

Dublin's "Why Go Bald" square will go green next month.

The urban space on the corner of Dame Lane and South Great George's Street, nicknamed after the iconic neon wall advertisement, will be transformed into a public garden for the June bank holiday weekend.

Garden designer Marion Keogh and landscape architect Esther Gerrard are behind the BloomFringe festival - an urban gardening event - and it is through this that the city centre space will be transformed into a garden.

"It's catered towards anyone with a garden, a window ledge, everybody," said Ms Keogh. "It's not just for cool, hip mums - it's very, very much about inspiring everyone."

This is the second year of the festival, and while it is mainly free, there are some ticketed events, one of which is a walking tour of Dublin's secret gardens.

Ms Keogh would not elaborate on where the secret sanctuaries are, but she did say that some are private while others are generally accessible to the public.


Retailers have also been asked to get involved by putting planters and flower baskets on their window ledges.

The concept behind the festival is a trend that began in New York 40 years ago.

"We want to encourage what we call guerrilla gardening," said Ms Keogh.

"This is where you see a space in your neighbourhood that is neglected, so people throw seed-bombs on to them and then tulips and things pop-up.

"This is something that has been happening in New York since the 1970s.

"It's done at night and it's all about planting more flowers so there's more pollen and more bees which improves the environment all round."

As part of the BloomFringe festival, there will be garden design clinics, plant swaps, a plant orphanage and workshops on how to make your own seed-bomb.

While the full programme has yet to be finalised, any green-fingered enthusiasts can keep an eye on the BloomFringe Facebook page for updates on events.

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