Planting at the Olympic Park


It’s only a few days since the Closing Ceremony, and I’d say there’s a fairly big O-shaped void in my life. The two weeks of the Olympic Games felt fantastic, whether watching from home or at the Olympic Park. I was lucky to have the chance to visit the Park a few times to see events. I had heard quite a bit about the planting before the Games started, not least from Sarah Price who was one of the team charged with designing the landscape.


I had high expectations of the Olympic meadows and the 2012 Gardens, a half mile swathe of perennial planting spanning ‘biological hotspots’ across the globe. I was not disappointed, the planting was exciting and contemporary. Most striking was how the 2012 gardens provided a haven from the throngs of visitors moving between venues in the Park. Plenty of visitors were enjoying the walkways, waterside lawns and exciting planting, but a calm prevailed in the gardens just a few metres away from the stadium, aquatic centre and vast MacDonalds.

I’ve included just a few photos of the gardens and meadows here. If you would like to read a bit more about the 2012 gardens have a look at Professor Nigel Dunnett’s website here. The planting will no doubt continue to be a highlight during the Paralympics, in these intervening weeks no doubt the gardens are being pepped up again by a team of landscapers. Now is the time to see these gardens and I recommend taking the opportunity if you can get your hands on a Paralympics ticket for the Park.

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