New Worthing planting scheme will result in ‘longer-lasting, colourful display’
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Before now, Worthing Borough Council has planted flowers in parks, town centre and neighbourhoods twice a year ‘to bring colour and joy to those spaces’.
But as part of a new sustainable approach, the council is ‘moving away from using solely traditional seasonal bedding’ towards a ‘more balanced mix’ of permanent planting, which will be supported by seasonal bedding.
The new approach, which has been co-designed with craft gardeners at Highdown Gardens, will provide a ‘longer-lasting, colourful display’ and ‘support pollinating insects throughout the year’.
Vicki Wells, Worthing’s cabinet member for the environment, said: “The design of Worthing’s traditional floral displays must adapt to the changing climate. The water-dependent plant varieties of the past required lots of attention and resources only to be composted at the end of each season.
“The recent State of Nature report shockingly highlights the UK as one of the most nature-depleted countries in the world. We must do everything we can to support pollinators and enhance biodiversity.
“Rethinking the types of plants used means we will better support nature and use less valuable water. We can deliver beautiful flower beds while being more environmentally-friendly and sustainable - I can’t wait to see the results.”
The change has been introduced as part of the council’s ‘ambition to be more sustainable’.
The local authority said the move will prevent the need to ‘wastefully replace tired plants each season’, whilst also saving on watering ‘due to the new, hardy species on show’.
In the town centre, flowerbeds will include nandina domestica and heuchera, whilst on the seafront they will feature seaside daisy, sea thrift, red valerian and sea holly.
The flowerbeds in Broadwater and outside Worthing Town Hall have been the first to receive the new method of planting. Others across the town and along the coastline will follow in the coming weeks.
Sophie Cox, Worthing’s cabinet member for climate emergency, said: “We still want to see a beautiful display of flowers across our towns, parks and neighbourhoods, but it’s important that we adapt to the ever-growing changes to our climate.
“These new planting schemes mean we will reduce the waste of costly annuals that last a single season and instead we’ll use plants that need less water and support our pollinators.”
The council said its parks team are ‘keen to encourage and support’ those in the community who have been sponsoring and maintaining flowerbeds across the town ‘to continue the more sustainable approach’.
This sustainable planting scheme forms part of the council’s work to ‘make a cleaner, greener and safer Worthing for its communities’.