Miniature gardens transported on cargo bikes to visit Wick and Thurso as part of the Dandelion creative project


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Cargo bikes carrying Dandelion’s unique growth cubes begin their tour of Scotland at the top of Calton Hill in Edinburgh. Photo: Andrew Cawley.

A fleet of cargo bikes carrying miniature vertical farms will visit Wick and Thurso on a Scotland-wide tour ending in the Highlands.

Four bespoke e-bikes – each carrying a growing cube – are part of Dandeliona major creative program demonstrating the power of collective action through an ambitious growth initiative that aims to reach hundreds of thousands of people.

Throughout August, the Cubes Bike Tour will visit 10 cities and towns, stopping at schoolyards, green spaces, town centers and the unexpected Dandelion Gardens, among others.

The team, which set off from Edinburgh on Wednesday, will also be distributing free seeds to encourage people to grow their own food.

The tour will visit Wick on Friday August 26th at the harbor at 11am and Market Square at 1pm. On Saturday August 27, he will visit downtown Thurso at 1 p.m. before the Jardin Inattendu at 7:30 p.m.

Commissioned by EventScotland and funded by the Scottish Government, Dandelion is Scotland’s contribution to UNBOXED: Creativity in the UK.

The Dandelion program followed the arc of the growing season, spanning April through September, bringing together music and art with science and technology to inspire people to “sow, grow and share” music, food, ideas and stories.

Eilidh Graham sets off from Edinburgh on a cargo bike carrying a miniature vertical farm as part of Dandelion's scheme to encourage people to
Eilidh Graham sets off from Edinburgh on a cargo bike carrying a miniature vertical farm as part of Dandelion’s scheme to encourage people to ‘grow their own’. Photo: Andrew Cawley.

The 1m x 1m Roving Perpetual Light Cubes are designed to promote accelerated plant growth and have been developed to grow hundreds of seedlings under LED light, combining design craftsmanship, traditional horticultural expertise and technological innovation.

At each stop, the cubes will play new music specially commissioned for Dandelion by Scottish and international artists inspired by the natural world.

They can only be heard on the sites and include Vendanth Bharadwaj, Arooj Aftab and Maeve Gilchrist, Mercury 2022 nominee Fergus McCreadie, Ravi Bandhu, Trio Da Kali, and amiina and Kathleen MacInnes.

The bikes have been ordered for Dandelion by Sustrans and the tour itinerary will follow the National cycling network where available.

Neil Butler, Festivals and Events Director at Dandelion, said the tour was a great way to spread Dandelion’s message and reach people across Scotland.

“The bikes will be traveling all over the country, so we’d love to see people come out to witness some of the magic, get seeds to grow yours at home, and learn about our upcoming harvest celebrations,” a- he declared.

Paul Bush, VisitScotland’s events director, said the tour was an engaging example of taking Dandelion to the heart of places across Scotland to be enjoyed by locals and visitors alike.

“It’s also fantastic to see events like this incorporate active travel into their programme, and it’s especially exciting to see cycling at the heart of this tour as Scotland prepares to celebrate cycling on the world stage in a year’s time, hosting the 2023 UCI Cycling World Championships,” he said.

Cosmo Blake, head of network engagement at Sustrans Scotland, said that by using the National Cycle Network the tour would be able to reach communities in a sustainable way.

“With the pervasive impacts of climate change, the importance of food and transport sustainability is becoming increasingly relevant,” he said.

“Bringing together active travel, growth and the arts is a fantastic way to demonstrate the huge range of possibilities of cycling for transportation as well as recreation.

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