Helsinki has some really beautiful gardens (including the winter gardens and Helsinki University’s botanical gardens) – but the city also manages to maintain some really lovely green spots in some of the busiest and most urban of locations, including the main city squares (Hakaniemi, Rautatientori, Senaatintori). The municipality’s trick seems to be that it has “mobile gardens” – massive pots on pallets or wheels that are rolled out from some mysterious storage location every spring already in bloom, instantly brightening the city. And then in autumn they get wheeled away again so that these areas can be more easily cleaned of snow (and presumably so that the pots can be prepared for the next spring again). What I’d really like to know is where these pot-plants-on-wheels get stored every winter?
Our local park – Karhupuisto – is also suddenly transformed each spring. The park is managed by the neighbourhood’s residents who, each spring, replant the centre of the park with a diversity of plants. This year it was interesting to see parsley and wheat as two of the species used in the flowerbeds. It is a good sign to see Karhupuisto transformed because it means the start of good weather!