Imagine taking a single step from the city concrete and planting your bare foot onto spongy grass with rolling hills, topped by lush apple trees and ripe fruit for picking. Sound like a dream? Well, that’s where it all started; with one nature dreamer’s big idea to take action against the lack of nature in urban people’s lives. The vision became a reality and floated around the Big Apple, inspiring New Yorkers with an unexpected dose of nature. All aboard Swale: the floating apple orchard Nature Remix in the heart of New York City.
As you can imagine, the idea of creating a floating edible forest to provide free fresh food and a desperately needed patch of nature for New Yorkers, seemed pretty far-fetched. But Mary Mattingly only thinks big. That’s why Strongbow collaborated with her and her team of artists, conservationists, landscapers and big dreamers, to help transform a barren barge into a floating orchard. The Swale, with its perennial gardens, welcomed visitors to harvest fruits and vegetables for free and encouraged them to rethink big cities’ connection with the environment.
On board of Swale, it was hard not to feel like you had been transplanted into a green utopia. Monsieur Plant was to thank for that! A piano grew from the side of a hill, exploding with colourful flowers and key made of bark. Shoes that seemed as though they’d been kicked off by their owners and forgotten, in the bliss of nature burst with color as new homes for wildflowers. Monsieur Plant was the artist with a green vision, whose collaboration on Swale helped it grow into a reality as beautiful as the idea.
Refreshing people with the energy of nature was at the core of Nature Remix. That’s why Swale felt like a natural fit for Strongbow Apple Ciders and a project ripe for remixing. Our green thumbs were put to work digging, planting, transforming a boring old barge into a lush apple orchard, to bring a little bit of nature, fresh fruit and cider to docks across Manhattan, Brooklyn and the Bronx. New Yorkers certainly got a well-deserved Nature Remix!