Human Shrub asks: Where are the flowers?

THE EADT can today publish a new picture of Colchester's mysterious Human Shrub on his way to tend to a neglected civic flower container.

Roddy Ashworth

THE EADT can today publish a new picture of Colchester's mysterious Human Shrub on his way to tend to a neglected civic flower container.

The camouflaged gardener, whose mission is to return plants and floral decorations to the town, struck again at the weekend, planting another small bush close to the town's Middleborough roundabout.

Alongside it was a sign on which was written in small white letters - “Dear Colchester, Where are the flowers?”


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It was signed simply: “Human Shrub.”

The anonymous horticulturalist came to national attention last week after he removed the weeds from one of Colchester's uncultivated council containers and bedded it out with flowers and a bush.

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Newspapers, TV stations and Internet sites sent his pictures across the globe and he has since received messages from supporters from as far away as Australia, New Zealand, Canada and the USA.

He now has more than 1,300 friends linked to his Faceboook page online and has his exploits been featured on radio shows all over the world.

The Human Shrub first appeared back in April when he successfully campaigned outside the town hall to get Colchester Borough Council to reverse its cash-cutting policy of removing 20% of the town's roadside shrubberies and rose beds.

But recently his attention was drawn to the municipal flower containers in the town, many of which have also been neglected and left full of weeds this summer,

Before this weekend's planting, he explained why he had begun his latest spree.

“Colchester was once a very peaceful place until the council unleashed diggers and strimmers, setting about to rip out shrubs and rose beds,” he said.

“Thankfully, and no doubt with my town hall protest helping, the decision to murder more of my friends was put on hold.

“However, recently I saw that terrible state of flower tubs where once lovely flowers were in bloom, offering a feeding ground to my friends the bees, as well as a great place for spiders to hang out and catch those pesky flies.

“Indeed I have spoken to many birds who tell me that in other towns and cities at this time of the year they are awash with bright colours from flowers.

“Sadly it seems Colchester's authorities don't care. And by not helping the flowers grow those ugly weeds took over.”

Last week Martin Hunt, Colchester's cabinet member with responsibility for parks and gardens, said that this autumn many of the civic containers would be planted with greenery.

“These will be on gateway roads and arterial roads.

“Then in the spring we will put the flowers in,” he added.

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