Children learn most quickly by example, and Lorcan Bourke showed this grandly in his spectacularly popular sustainability flower design for children at the Bloom 2010 event in Phoenix Park at Dublin, Ireland this year. Bloom 2010 had a lovely sustainability section which Lorcan managed. This sustainability area showed how simple choices can bring sustainable ideas alive in our gardens and local communities.
While I was there, I asked Lorcan why he chose a flower to educate on sustainability. He said, “Sometimes the most profound things are the easiest to learn when we are children. Every child identifies with a single flower. Building a flower which represents sustainability came to me when I realized the connection of nature to children.” Directly above you see photos of him demonstrating the garden to children visiting Bloom 2010 and standing in middle of the unique flower petal containers which housed the various sustainable displays.
Lorcan managed the entire sustainability exhibit, which educated all age groups and levels of visitors, but he felt something special should be created specifically for school children. His belief is that, as he says, “positive green change will come if we educate our children on how to take care of the earth.” Leading by example certainly seems the best way to help a child blossom.
His multi-colored flower container was assembled by Lorcan Bourke, John Hogan, and a team of Bloom 2010 helpers. Each petal represented a part of sustainable life. John Hogan, pictured to the right, was indeed as charming as he looks in this photo where he is assembling a soil display in the pink petal. This petal explains that soil is the beginning of the process for all things in nature and that utilizing natural fertilizers like manure is better for the earth.
Yellow represented locally grown and organic vegetables and the nutrition they provide; it was filled with a beautiful display of garden vegetables. Green represented grass, which provides food for the animals that Ireland uses like cows, goats, and sheep. Light blue represented air which was represented by house plants that provide oxygen and a wind turbine that touches on the need for electrical generation via wind power. Dark blue represented water, and contained within was a rain barrel and information on gray water processing. Red represented solar power and alternative use powers to be used instead of oil.
In the bottom photo you see Lorcan talking to the community about the wind turbine portion of the flower. Listening to his passion about sustainability was inspiring and challenged me to think of even more creative ways to look at the simple act of being green. Imagining the more than 50,000 visitors at Bloom 2010 also inspired to do something sustainable in their garden: priceless!
Thanks to my sponsor for this incredible speaking, blogging, and eco-green adventure to Ireland – Glenisk Organic Dairy. They have been wonderful to partner with and have some astoundingly healthy products, particularly for children and babies.