Floral Clock
April 12, 2019
Floral Clock

The Ontario Power Generation (Ontario Hydro) - Niagara Parks Commission Floral Clock is located along the Niagara River Parkway just north of the Sir Adam Beck Generating Stations. Built in 1950, it was modeled after the famous 1903 clock located in the Princess Street Gardens in Edinburgh, Scotland. At 12.2 metres (40 feet) in diameter, the clock is the largest of its kind in the world, and is three times the size of the clock in Scotland. The first clock face featured the letters of the words "Ontario Hydro", the agency who originally owned and built the clock, to mark each the twelve hours. Since 1977, the Floral Clock has been displayed and maintained by the Niagara Parks Commission. When the Niagara Parks commission began to maintain the clock, the wording was changed to “Niagara Parks”. The planted face is maintained by Niagara Parks horticulture staff, while the mechanism maintained by Ontario Hydro. The intricate designs on the face of the clock are created with up to 24,000 carpet bedding plants. The floral design is changed twice each year. During the winter season, multi-coloured stones replace the flowers. Designs are created a year in advance to allow for the proper preparations. The clock is stopped during the planting process. There are bedding flower displays around the clock, with a tower at the back that houses Westminster chimes that play each quarter hour. The front of the clock is bordered by a large pond that is approximately 85 feet long by 10 feet wide that is used as in aquarium and water gardens. The coins that are collected from the pond go to TB research.The clock mechanism, hands, drive system and chimes were designed and built by Ontario Hydro staff. The hands, which have a combined weight of 1,250 pounds, were made into the shape of crutches. When the clock was being built, Marion Beck, the daughter of Sir Adam Beck, the chairman of the Hydro-Electric Power Commission, was diagnosed with tuberculosis. The time on the floral clock is checked daily to ensure accuracy.

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