People power – flower power

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An article from four years ago had already told half of this story – to celebrate the spring sun reaching the piazza outside of the Palazzo Pancrazi, the inhabitants of that area of Barga Vecchia did a bit of spring cleaning in the piazza.

In 2005  the Comune bought and installed some new street furniture – benches, signs, rubbish bins and two large cast iron circular seats which were positioned in the two principal piazzas of Barga Vecchia – Piazza Angelio and Piazza Salvo Salvi. Visitors to Barga could rest their aching legs and admire the plants that were planted in the middle of the large cast iron circular bases.

Seemingly to add “spice” to the occasion, the plants that were chosen were not pretty flowers or even hardy shrubs. No, somebody, somewhere decided that the best plants would be a particular  strain of a holly bush, well known for its puncturing and pricking powers to all who ventured close by. These plants flourished well, thrived and grew in stature until they had more or less taken over all of the seating area making it impossible to use them to all but the very hardy or foolish ….. (not counting the Barga cats of course, who managed to squeeze their way into the middle of the holly bushes and use them as their own private cat toilets)

Added to which, after a couple of years, the one in Piazza Angelio was pushed to one side of the piazza to allow the stage to be built for the festas and as these circular seats were extremely heavy, once pushed in the corner – it stayed there.spring-weather-plant-trimming-piazza-salvi-barga-009

The same thing happened to the one in Piazza Salvo Salvi. The thriving and now thoroughly uncomfortable-to-be-close-to seat was left to its own devises in the corner.

That is until Marino and some of the regulars at Aristos bar took things into their own hands and manhandled the heavy object back in the middle of the piazza and after some tactical pruning restored the bench to its former (usable) glory.

People power. – full article here

Now leap forward in time and we find ourselves in the piazza this week with precisely the same problem – the prickly bush has now grown to such proportions as to make it impossible to use the seat – this time something a bit more drastic was in need of doing .
The whole plant was summarily removed from the centre of the cast iron and taken away to be planted in a more “user friendly” area of the city.

Next, a quick trip out to a local farm to get some good earth to replenish the by now very tired looking ground in the middle of the container followed by a visit to the local shops to choose some suitable flowers and in the space of a couple of hours it was “job done” and nobody was any the wiser.

This is after all council property – any changes should be done by the council and not private citizens but hopefully nobody will be complaining as the piazza now looks so much more inviting and above all, finally it is possible to sit back and enjoy the peace and quiet of the piazza without the danger of painful proddings from that miserable holly bush.

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