The London Underground station that looks more like a garden centre than a Tube stop

Flowers on the platform at South Kensington Station
-Credit:Wikimedia Commons

The London Underground might not be the first place that springs to mind when you think of natural beauty. Often, it's associated with grime, gloom and delays.

However, recent initiatives have started to change this perception, transforming the commute for many Londoners. You may have noticed that some tube stations are surprisingly attractive, with a few even boasting their own gardens.

One such station is South Kensington on the Piccadilly, District and Circle lines, which has an award-winning garden right on its platform. It feels more like a garden centre than a bustling transport hub.

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The dedicated staff at South Kensington have worked tirelessly to cultivate a stunning garden that can be admired from both the train carriage and the platform.

During the summer months, the flowers burst into bloom, creating a lush green oasis in the heart of the city. The garden is so enchanting that it's easy to forget you're standing on a Tube platform in Central London.

You can find this urban Eden at the eastern end of the above-ground platform, where flowers spring from watering cans and you might even spot a gnome or two.

South Kensington isn't the only station with its own 'garden'. In our busy lives, we often don't take the time to stop and 'smell the flowers', quite literally.

The tradition of station gardens dates back over a century, with the first official garden appearing at a London Underground station. Today, Transport for London even runs an annual 'In Bloom' competition.

The competition is an opportunity for stations' teams with a bit of gardening prowess to show off their creative side. You'd be surprised what plants you can sprout in old tyres, discarded food delivery crates and even empty mayonnaise pots.

Citing The Guardian: "The District Railway company started the competition back in 1910. Staff were given money to buy seeds and encouraged to grow plants. The planting was more formal (early winners included St James's Park, Ealing Common and Ealing Broadway), but by 1925, there were 30 small gardens scattered along the railway, according to Train Omnibus Tram magazine."

So during your next daily grind on the rails, why not stop rushing about and take a moment to appreciate these platform top gardens?

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