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The Eden Project

A Panoramic View of the Eden Project

This is the Eden Project, the most extraordinary new development in Cornwall for many years. In an old china-clay quarry near St. Austell, a series of huge geodesic domes have been constructed to provide a safe refuge for many of the world's endangered species. The domes on the left of the picture contain a tropical environment, while those on the right are home to a semi-arid environment. Inside, are thousands of plants, some relatively common and some on the brink of extinction. Over the coming years, the Eden Project people intend to add birds, insects, and reptiles, a few of which can already be glimpsed - if you're lucky! Below are a few of the photographs I took on my visit to the project in March 2002. For more information, visit the Project's website at: www.edenproject.com

The Eden Project: interior view of the tropical biome

  Most visitors go straight to the tropical biome. This hot and humid area can get crowded, making it seem less like one of the lonely places of the planet, but nevertheless the scale is impressive. As they have been in place for only a few years, many of the plants have yet to get established. Yet, such is the speed of growth in tropical areas, that some of the trees already tower over your head. In years to come, some may even reach the inside of the dome itself. One of the most extraordinary things about the Project is the way tropical plants, like the young palm trees below, contrast with the futuristic steel and plastic of the dome. The result is often breathtaking.
The Eden Project: young palm fronds contrast with the metal and plastic of the geodesic dome


After the bustle and the humidity of the tropical biome, the semi-arid biome is a relief. Fewer people come in here, and there is a calmer atmosphere. Because most of the plants tend to be slower - and lower -growing, the contrasts between the worlds inside and outside the dome can be striking. Here, the natural blues and greens of the Cornish environment form a muted background to the vibrant red soil and blooms of the desert. And, in a scene that belongs in a 'house and garden' style magazine, two chairs, a potted orange, and an adobe wall, remind us why we all aspire to the Mediterranean lifestyle.  

The Eden Project: interior view of the semi-arid biome

The Eden Project: two chairs and an adobe wall in the semi-arid biome


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* This page last updated 29 August 2003 *
* Text and images © copyright Brycchan Carey 2002 *