Helping out to make a greener earth

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Taiwan Trip - Part 1

Yesterday (Saturday), my friend Tata Montilla, his assistant Sergio and myself flew to Taipei to help out our other friends there led by Baby Spowart in executing the Philippine Booth in the 2010 Taipei International Flora Exposition.  One of the biggest garden shows in Asia, it will have more than 30 countries which will be showcasing their horticultural expertise in addition to numerous local exhibitors.

This is a highly promoted event for Taiwan.  Considering the scale of the expo plus the amount of funds that have been budgeted for it, one can expect multimedia promotions aimed at various levels.  The news so far is that the tickets to the opening event, still some three weeks away, have been sold out already.

The exposition will be formally opened in November 4 so at this stage it is basically construction that we are working on.  By October 19, an additional batch of designers will be arriving to do the finishing touches on the construction that would be completed by then.

There are two components to the expo, an outdoor exhibit where the gardens will have to be on show for six months and an indoor exhibit where viewing will only be for a few days.  The exhibit we are doing is the outdoor one while another group will do the indoor towards the end of the month, in time for the opening.The theme that our group has chosen for the Philippine Booth is Spanish Philippines.  It will be focusing on the colonial Spanish influence with the iconic Intramuros Walls as a backdrop for the horticultural compositions and collections that will be spotlighted by Team Philippines. The original plan which was submitted to the organizers is shown below.  However, between the plan and the actual exhibit, many changes may be expected.

Baby and Tata with the Philippine exhibit under construction behind them.

The Hawaiian exhibit is massive in terms of boulders that were used and the very tall palm trees and travellers' palms (some more than 30 feet tall).

It is made up of a waterfalls and a shallow pond where the water collects.  Given the planting materials so far assembled, this garden will be very tropical with palms and lots of flowering heliconias.

There are three Japanese exhibits being created and the picture on the left is one of the three.  This is a very typical Japanese garden which features a traditional gate and topiaries.

As expected, the Japanese garden exhibits are very understated and peaceful looking.  The other two are way too early in the construction process to see how they would eventually look.

The Taipei exhibit is sure to catch people's attention once its done.  Its focal point is this huge cocoon/nest woven from bamboo.  The picture will give you the height of this giant fish trap (?) as to its right side you can see a man wearing a red shirt working. The bamboo superstructure embraces a circular pond and has lots of tall bamboos for its backdrop.

Its now 11 pm and we still have a lot to do tomorrow.  Signing off for now, more updates tomorrow.

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