This circular clock has been planted out since 1903 with up to 40,000 plants in an ornate design reflecting a different theme each summer. The idea came from James McHattie, City Superintendent of Parks and James Ritchie, the Edinburgh clockmaker, using the mechanism of a redundant turret clock. In 1905 a cuckoo which pops out every hour was added, and in 1934 a new mechanism was installed by Ritchie and Sons, who still service it. In the clock’s centenary year (2003), it won a Gold medal at the Chelsea Flower Show.
City of Literature 2015
This year, Edinburgh’s world-famous floral clock will strike 10 in tribute to the capital’s 10th anniversary as the world’s first UNESCO City of Literature.
The Lord Provost Donald Wilson said: “We are justly proud to be celebrating 10 years as the world’s first UNESCO City of Literature. This designation requires constant activity, and in this 10th anniversary year our aim is to make Edinburgh’s books and authors ever more visable and accessible to residents and visitors.
Ali Bowden, Director of Edinburgh UNESCO City of Literature Trust added: “Edinburgh is an incredible city and it lives and breathes literature. It’s great to have this moment where we can all stop and cast an eye back over the last 10 years – which are packed with amazing success stories – and celebrate our literary community and all the people who make us a UNESCO City of Literature.”
Christine De Luca, the Edinburgh Makar, said: “It’s wonderful that the historic floral clock will highlight Edinburgh’s 10th anniversary as the first UNESCO City of Literature. I hope the Edinburgh Makar website will make it easier for people to find out more about what the Makar does: it links to the work of the three previous Makars and will, I hope, be there for future Makars too.”
The Floral Clock is located in West Princes Street Gardens next to The Mound entrance.
You can look at our photos of the 2014 Floral Clock.