Yesterday, the private roof garden on the top of the Blue Fin Building in Southwark was opened to let the general public wander in to have a look.
Fortunately, the sun was shining, the wind was manageable and the plants were on best behaviour. Oh, and the view looking away from the garden is just as spectacular.
Being a 10th floor site, the plants have to cope not just with high winds at times, but also fairly shallow soil beds, and I had quite an interesting chat with one of the volunteers from the organisers, the Society of Garden Designers, who directed me to some sources for inspiration for my own even more windy 5th floor balcony.
It’s a modern style garden, which either appeals or not – and I suspect the “cottage garden” lovers would hate it, but I quite liked it myself and I noted most approvingly of the slightly tokenistic vegetable patch and bee-friendly flowers, and on the other side – the vineyard.
The one thing that freaked me though is the very thin glass wall that stops people dropping off the edge of the building. I prefer my balcony barriers to be rather more substantial, and I had a few wobbles when trying to look down over the edge.
That said, you do get very good views of the Tate Modern’s extension works in the underground oil drums.
Although I didn’t partake as I had just finished a drink elsewhere, they had lain on a supply of cold drinks to enjoy if you wanted to relax on the roof and soak in the views, and thanks to the fairly intense sun, I noticed most of the relaxing was taking place on the North side, in the shade.
In fact, I nearly burnt myself when trying to sit down on a gravel path in the sun to try and take an “arty photo” and the gravel roasted my backside in just a few seconds.
A few more photos: