Poznań’s floating eco-garden is quacking good idea

In addition to looking good, the garden provides other environmental benefits, such as increasing biodiversity in the city, while helping clean the water and air. Michał Strokowski/Fundacja Onwater.pl/Facebook

As cities strive to become greener, Poznań has installed a floating garden that will benefit both the city’s inhabitants and their natural environment.

Amid concerns about climate change and air pollution, cities globally are becoming more aware of the value of green spaces such as parks and gardens – not just as spaces for sport or relaxation, but as places that help mitigate the “urban heat island” effect.

As part of its environmental policy, the European Union is encouraging cities to protect their nature and biodiversity, while improving green infrastructure, by which it means a strategically planned network of natural and semi-natural areas.

The garden – mostly made up of native species – consists of a light construction that sits on the water, permanently moored to the bottom of the river. Michał Strokowski/Fundacja Onwater.pl/Facebook

Floating gardens are one way in which cities can become greener. Placed on buoyant structures, such as floating platforms, they should be placed on non-tidal water bodies like canals and lakes so that tides do not damage them.  

In this context, the new floating garden on the river Cybina in Poznań, near the Porta Posnania culture complex, brings more greenery into the city.

Seven petal-like structures encircle a central one, which houses a wicker nesting basket for waterfowl.Michał Strokowski/Fundacja Onwater.pl/Facebook

The garden – mostly made up of native species – consists of a light construction that sits on the water, permanently moored to the bottom of the river. Seven petal-like structures encircle a central one, which houses a wicker nesting basket for waterfowl.

This has been greeted as good news for local ducks, which are already enjoying the water garden.

As part of its environmental policy, the European Union is encouraging cities to protect their nature and biodiversity, while improving green infrastructure, by which it means a strategically planned network of natural and semi-natural areas.Michał Strokowski/Fundacja Onwater.pl/Facebook

“Over the past decade, the duck population in cities has halved. This results from pouring concrete on quays and the fact that developers almost build on the river itself. Birds simply do not have places to nest,” noted Kamil Zaremba, head of the Wrocław-based OnWater.pl foundation, which carried out the project at the city authorities’ request.

The new floating garden on the river Cybina in Poznań, near the Porta Posnania culture complex, brings more greenery into the city.Michał Strokowski/Fundacja Onwater.pl/Facebook

In addition to looking good, the garden provides other environmental benefits, such as increasing biodiversity in the city, while helping clean the water and air. The vegetation will continue to develop over time, as the wind and birds bring new seeds to the garden.