In the last few weeks around the edge of the huge junction by the red bridge where Ferry Road meets West Granton Access, a butterfly and bee-friendly art project has been taking shape. But it will take a few more weeks before it becomes what the creators have in mind.
The artwork spells out the words SCRAN FIR BEES – and when it flowers later this year it will yield nectar for bees and other pollinators. The flower beds are seeded with cornflower, poppy, corn marigold and corn poppy which will bloom in the summer, and there will be second seeding in another location in late summer. The second installation will spell out BEES FIR OUR SCRAN drawing attention to the fact that we need bees to grow our food crops. Bees and other pollinators contribute around £690 million to the UK economy by pollinating 80% of our native and imported food crops
The floral artwork is visible from the red bridge and also from the roadway where hundreds of cars and buses pass daily and is the work of artist Natalie Taylor and North Edinburgh Arts.
Natalie Taylor said: “Our aim is to encourage people to accept and help with more wildflower verges across the city and reduce the use of pesticides in public spaces. A third of our food is reliant on insects, such as bees and butterflies, and due to a drastic collapse in insect population recently, the time to help them is now before it’s too late…“
Valla Moodie, Green Projects Manager, North Edinburgh Arts said: “North Edinburgh Arts is delighted to be working with Artist Natalie Taylor on a new creative public project which aims to raise awareness of the importance of pollinators and wildflowers. Through our Green projects we deliver a range of activities relating to gardening, nature and the outdoors, both in the NEA garden as well as in the wider community.”
The project is enabled by Edinburgh City Council Housing service and funded by the University of Edinburgh’s Community Micro-Grant and The National Lottery: Together For Our Planet Fund.