West Princes Street Gardens
British Columbia, Canada
Thank you to George Smith who wrote:
"I remember well being taken as a child
to see the
Floral Clock as if it were some rite of passage.
I did not know it
changed over the years and tended to pass it by on a 'seen it before,
got the T shirt' basis."
Nanaimo, Vancouver Island,
British Columbia, Canada: October 24, 2006
Peterhead, Aberdeenshire, Scotland
Thank you to to Davie
Webster who wrote:
"One of the gardeners who, for many years, had
responsibility for planting out the clock on an individual plant by plant
basis was a gentleman called Lindsay Brydie (known as Lin).
Lin came from the village of Strathkinness, just
outside St Andrews in Fife. For many years, with one of his brothers
he ran a market gardeners in Strathkinness and St Andrews.
He was privileged to supply the Schools of St
Leonard's and West Park - and also Miss Harleys, the confectioners in South
Street, St Andrews. This was a real feather in ones cap in those
Move to Edinburgh
"Lin also had another interest in his life -
a long long courtship of some 40+ years with an Edinburgh lady, my late
aunt who died this year at the grand old age 98
He eventually moved to Edinburgh, married my
aunt, and joined the Edinburgh Corporation Parks Department as it was known
Lin was for many years one of the
principal gardeners responsible for the painstaking job of working on the
clock. I can recall him lying on long extended ladders supported at
either end on seed boxes. He lay face-down for long periods of time,
planting out the variety and very large number of flowers, and sometimes
vegetables, for colour - e.g. beetroot."
Here is a
photo of one of the workers on the ladder, taken in October 2003, as the
winter floral clock was being planted.
Planting the Clock
"Setting out the clock on the bare ground always
seemed to be a worry so that, when planted, the geometry of the layout,
circles and squares, were eye sweet and they were where they should be on
the clock face etc.
I can also recall his stories about having to
work closely with the clockmaker's personnel (Ritchie's of Edinburgh)
because, as you know, the hands of the clock had many, many flowers embedded
I don't know if everyone would appreciate that
the clock went through a daily manicure (at the time I am talking about).
Everything was trimmed, cut with small scissors, and then watered each
morning before the Princess Street Garden gates were opened to the public."
"The floral clock was always one of
Edinburgh's most photographed sites. Many Calendars never went out
without having a picture of the floral clock.
annual design theme for the clock was always an item of
David Webster, Peterhead, Aberdeenshire,
Falkirk, Stirlingshire, Scotland
Thank you to to
Danny Callaghan who wrote:
"I remember going to see the floral clock on
many an occasion.
No one has mentioned the cuckoo which had its
house next to the Allan Ramsay statue. It came out on the hour and
cuckooed for each hour.
Large crowds would gather to see this. The
simple delights before iPods and Playstations,
Danny Callaghan, Falkirk,
Stirlingshire, Scotland: November 26, 2009
The cuckoo is still beside the floral clock. I
believe that it comes out every quarter-hour.
Peter Stubbs, Edinburgh: November