With summer fast approaching, the team at High Life Highland’s Inverness Botanic Gardens has been hard at work to grow and curate over 1000 hanging flower baskets for display all over the Highlands.
Many of the hanging baskets are bespoke to match the requirements of local businesses, to keep consistent with their own branding.
Ewan MacKintosh, High Life Highland’s Facility Manager for Inverness Botanic Gardens, shared: “Our core team of gardeners deliver the project, but we wouldn’t be able to deliver hanging baskets on this scale if it wasn’t for the support of our seasonal gardeners and dedicated volunteers.
“In total, we provide 650 hanging flower baskets for businesses across Inverness in collaboration with Inverness BID, and 350 hanging flower baskets for Oban BID too. The project takes months to coordinate, with over 15,000 plants to grow, water, and arrange.
“In addition, we support The Highland Council with its flower displays across the Highlands by providing around 60,000 plants to decorate beyond Inverness, into the likes of Nairn, Grantown, Newtomore and Kingussie.”
Margaret Laws, Inverness BID’s Deputy Head, added: “We are very excited to have the floral displays going up in the city centre – starting as soon as this weekend. The flowers are always popular amongst locals and visitors alike, adding a burst of colour to the city over the summer months.
“We visited Inverness Botanic Gardens earlier in the year so that we could learn more about the process in person. The team are so dedicated and do a magnificent job coordinating everything – it was fascinating to see how our beautiful hanging baskets start as just tiny little plugs.”
Plug plants are ordered in March, then transferred into 9cm pots to bloom into beautiful flowers.
In May, these are planted and arranged into the baskets, which are meticulously cared for until finally ready for Highland-wide delivery in June.
Ewan MacKintosh continued: “The hanging flower baskets are watered twice a week, every week, throughout their display period from June to September. In the lead up, the garden looks like a tapestry of colour.
“Something we are particularly proud about, is our commitment to using only peat-free compost throughout the process – 40 cubic meters to be exact, which is the equivalent of 4 elephants!
“Although coordinating hanging flower baskets is a lengthy annual project, it brings us so much joy to see our efforts bring smiles to members of the public.”
Steve Walsh, High Life Highland’s Chief Executive, concluded: “We are delighted to be working with local organisations to create and deliver colourful hanging flower baskets across the Highlands.
“High Life Highland is dedicated to providing services that create a positive impact and make life better for our local communities, which Inverness Botanic Gardens continue to achieve by diligently, sustainably, and successfully arranging hanging flower baskets each year.”