5 February 2007
A Day trip to Eden.
December is one of Decorfolia's busiest months, not only are our 'winter elves' putting up Christmas trees, but our service days are limited due to all the lovely bank holidays we get. So our annual Christmas bun-fight generally happens in late January by which time we are either on diets or just sick of rich food. So this year we all voted for a day out to the Eden project in sunny Cornwall and what a beautiful day it was too.
A perfect winter morning saw us all gathered at the office bright and early and raring to go, but hungry. So it was decided to do about a quarter of the journey and then 'fuel up' us and the hired minibus that Pat and I had picked up the night before. After a full English and a couple of coffees (mmm...there goes the diet) we are off again and get to Eden for about 11:30. The project is 3 miles outside of St Austel in a reclaimed china clay pit, which sets the scene perfectly for the futuristic biospheres that house all the planting.
I have been to the Eden project a few times now and always come away
lost for words. So I'll hand over to some of my Decorfolia colleagues
to write the rest of this 'newsletter'...
Last week I went for my third visit to the Eden Project - there is much to see that I could go time and time again and never be bored. Why did Tim Smidt build it so far away!
The major difference to this visit was that many of the original
trees have now grown so well, that they are almost not recognisable as
the same plants used by us in our clients' offices. There are beautiful
Pachira (Pakyra) trees that have long lost the supple green stems that
you see and now have woody trunks with a wonderful bright green canopy
of foliage. Here is to my next trip to Cornwall...
Towards the end of January, on a crisp sunny day we journeyed down to Cornwall to visit the Eden Project. Our first view of the "Domes" saw two tiny figures suspended on ropes maintaining the outside structure. Not a job for the "faint-hearted".
The Mediterranean house, with a cooler climate grows plants such as
Prickly Pears and Cork Oak trees. Moving to the humid house with the
jungly plants that towered above us with the swirling mist used to keep
the moisture in the air, here the heat became unbearable. The cheeky
robins that seem to inhabit all the various zones must have robust
characters to handle the climates at Eden....
I was looking forward to going to Eden project, and it was an adventure already as we travelled up and down the Cornish hills in the January sunshine. But the highlight of the morning was definitely the fried breakfast we had at a petrol station. Luckily when we arrived to the old china clay pit where Eden project is based Mark managed to park close to the entrance so we could soon have a look around in the big bubbles.
First we walked around in the warm biome where I was surprised to see familiar plants from home in Hungary, for example geraniums with scented leaves, lavenders and strawberry trees. I also came across a cork tree with cork pigs under it, cacti with edible pear on the top. There were also orange and lemon trees with oversized fruits the size of a Christmas pudding. After this we went to the 'steam room' where all the tropical plants grew up to the ceiling in a typical rainforest habitat. It was interesting to see most of the plants we use every day except some of them were 2-3 storey building tall and they looked untidy as they were not trimmed back. As we were slowly looping up the slopes next to the waterfall I spotted a written notice under a palm tree which was used for making Rattan furniture and further on I found a coffee and banana plantation.
I enjoyed the trip very much and I can't wait to go back...
Eden is an amazing place and when you are there you forget that you are
inside. I found out stuff about new plants and ones I already knew
about, I saw plants that we use at Decorfolia but on a much larger
scale and had been left to grow unmaintained, the humidity was warm and
moist and the plants were thriving. There were birds that were tame,
ants and other insects on the green house floor made it feel like a
Walking in the sunshine down towards the domes which grew larger and
larger as we got nearer. First on our travels was the Mediterranean
dome, quite cool and light with robins flying around quite tame. It is
like walking around the world, firstly you are in Africa with all sorts
of trees and plants. Then you are in the Mediterranean basin surrounded
by Olive and Lemon trees, then we were in California with such plants
as Prickly pear cacti.
One of the many Robins living at Eden