Fri, Oct 12, 2018 - Page 4 News List

Organizers give preview of flora expo

NO EXPENSES SPARED:The organizers of the Taichung flora exposition have spent NT$2.2 billion to arrange about 6.6 million plants on 60.88 hectares, they said

By Chang Ching-ya and Sherry Hsiao  /  Staff reporter, with staff writer

An arched bamboo trellis for fruit and flower vines covers a path at the Waipu venue of the Taichung World Flora Exposition on Monday.

Photo courtesy of the Taichung City Government

About 2,500 plant species are to be featured at the Taichung World Flora Exposition, more than 60 percent of which are from Taiwan, the Taichung Agriculture Bureau said on Monday.

The exhibition opens on Nov. 3 and runs through April 24 next year, with displays spread across venues in Houli (后里), Fengyuan (豐原) and Waipu (外埔) districts on 60.88 hectares.

Organizers have installed about 6.6 million plants so far, including ornamental plants, cut flowers, shrubs and ground cover plants, bureau director Wang Jiun-shong (王俊雄) said.

The exposition is to highlight locally grown plants and domestic agricultural technology, and each of the three venues features unique installations, he said.

The Houli venue is divided into a “forest park” area and a “horse ranch” area, he said.

The forest area would include plants from different altitudes to form a microcosm of the nation’s landscape, he said.

It would also include a section showcasing plants that are representative of Aboriginal culture, such as the Mexican marigold (Tagetes erecta) — which which traditionally only Rukai warriors were allowed to wear — pigeon pea, taro plant, lilac tasselflower — also known as Cupid’s shaving brush — foxtail millet and djulis — often called “Taiwanese quinoa,” he added.

The ranch area has been planted with species whose Chinese names are related to the character for “horse,” including common purslane, bayhops and the slender Dutchman’s pipe (Aristolochia debilis), all named in Chinese for their resemblance to different parts of a horse, he said.

The Fengyuan Huludun Park (葫蘆墩公園) is to include a 213m “romantic floral corridor” with differently colored plants and climbing plants, and a “vine tunnel” of about 30m made of sandpaper vine, he said.

The Fengyuan venue would also feature a tree rose garden with 36 types of roses, he said.

All the trees in the Waipu Park would be native to Taiwan, he said, adding that a Chinese soapberry forest originally on the site would be preserved and there is to be a 6m-high, 210m-long “green bamboo corridor” made up of princess vines, great bougainvillea and other climbing plants.

The organizers have spent NT$2.2 billion (US$70.73 million) on landscaping, including the cost of plants, soil, fertilizer and installation, as well as the costs of maintenance, personnel and machinery for the exposition period, he added.

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