Singapore Garden Festival 2016

So I thought I wouldn't have anything interesting to write in July, turns out I had. As the title indicated, it's about Singapore Garden Festival which I went to yesterday. Yesterday was the social activity thing that I mentioned in the last post. It started very embarrassingly for me. I got into the wrong station because I never read the email properly. I ended up 30 minutes late. I was seriously beyond embarrassed. Perhaps now it makes sense to you when I often wrote how I'm directionally challenged and got lost a lot in all of my travels, it's simply because I don't read things properly. Anyway, so yesterday mom asked if it's fun. I told her I was just relieved when it's over. It was not bad. I guess I had some fun. I tried bowling for the first time ever and every time you get to try something for the first time in your life, it's always a good feeling, at least for me. I would say I still don't know how to bowl. I took many steps before I rolled the ball and I didn't even bother to learn how the scoring works. I managed to knock down some pins and in the group I played in, I didn't do badly, though there were times when my ball went to the gutter. The competitive me got annoyed. Overall it's pretty fun and I seriously do want to learn how to do this properly, but I don't think I'll have the chance. I don't see me doing this often. This place we went to was far for me.

So Singapore Garden Festival, I was kinda in a dilemma about going actually. I wasn't blown away by the previous festivals. In fact I think I wrote I may not give it a go again, but since social engagement finished not so late and it was a sunny day yesterday (compared to the heavy rainy and cloudy days we've been having in the previous days), I thought I should make full use of the rest of the day. Mom asked if it was good. I think it wasn't bad. Maybe because I came in with so little expectation, I didn't get disappointed much. It wasn't mind blowing, but I did see some things that I like. It helped that I paid the local residents rate, which is half of what the tourist would pay. I thought a lot about Chelsea Flower Show as I walked around the area which is very very big. It was a hot day yesterday, people were walking with umbrella. Here in the tropics, you need umbrella all the time, rain or shine. There were people, but it wasn't full or overcrowded like Chelsea Flower Show, so that's a plus. There were more crowd though in Gardens by the Bay's Flower Dome which host the winning orchid winners and this did make the visit to be not as comfortable. By the way, since I was still on the fence about going that day, I only brought my ixus instead of my dlsr. I struggled in getting good photos, but I thought I should use this as a challenge. As expected many of the pictures weren't great, but I did surprise myself when I saw decent pictures.

Back to comparing this to Chelsea Flower Show. Singapore Garden Festival actually perhaps has more things to offer. It has the outdoor garden landscape designs, the usual rooms or balcony garden designs, the window of the world (which looks more like installation arts with flowers), the fantasy garden designs (though I feel the number of entries kinda decreased), a good portion of bonsai exhibits, other flower arrangements designs and competitions, learning garden portion where you can see the plants that give us food here in Asia, orchid sections (which again I feel kinda decreased in size compared to previous festivals), and there's also talks and demonstration about gardening (which I didn't watch). The festival even has a bigger market place area for food and stuff, which by the way, this year they don't seem to have the stalls with people selling gardening or flower related stuff. Maybe because of the poor reception in previous festivals, the sellers didn't feel like coming back. Anyways, what the Singapore Garden Festival is lacking compared to Chelsea Flower Show is perhaps the many different kind of flowers that you see in Chelsea Flower Show. I think I wrote this before, it somewhat cannot be helped. We live in the tropics, some flowers, beautiful delicate ones just cannot survive here. In Chelsea Flower Show, I think the flower exhibitors sell out seeds. Here in Singapore, I didn't seem to find any. I guess if you attend any of the demo or talk, you can get some advice and buy something. I don't know if my perception of this is wrong because I didn't go and explored everything in details. It's just I think in the first Garden Festival, they dedicated a whole floor for community gardening and there's a lot of people so willing to talk to you about how to start gardening in your flat and stuff. This time around, I didn't feel so. Anyways, here are pictures, lots of them.

My first stop was the terrariums showcase. There were many interesting terrariums with very cute figurines inside them. The room is dark though, so many photos were just blurry.

This is a picture of some sculpture near this dome like structure they built. I don't know if it's permanent, but it looked pretty nice.

In the community garden sections, there were some harvest in competition. There were not many of them, I saw like 2 tables of this below. Still it's quite impressive that people took time to grew these.

The pictures below are from the Floral Windows to the World Exhibition. As written above, this feels to me more like installation arts with flowers, always unique, strange, whimsical. There were 2 displays that I really like this year. One of them is the one exactly below here with Japanese origami like structures. The other one is the second picture, because I love curves and the flowers choices were just great with the white wall.

This one below is from one of the bonsai from the Penjing and Artistic Stone Exhibition and Competition. I seriously had to google just now to learn what Penjing is. I just called these as bonsai and I like those with little figurines like this one below. I guess if they add figurines into it, it becomes Penjing, not just a bonsai? Anyways, there was one which was really amazing because it looks like a whole mountain.

This one below is from the Fantasy Gardens. The bench and gazebo is up side down. The gazebo is actually only half, there's a mirror reflecting it to make it whole. The exhibition area here is very dark that I couldn't enjoy some of the exhibits much, also photos coming from here are not amazing.

Outside, there were some strange things, like this one from the musical flower field.

Lastly, I went to the Flower Dome. The ticket includes this. I didn't realize that the flower dome has this cool dragon. Super cool and I so want to have one myself.

So by this time, the camera's battery was dying and with the so many people jostling to see the orchids, I couldn't really take many pictures. The orchids were okay I guess, I didn't see anything that was particularly stunning.

I spent around 2 hours there. It was hot and I was quite tired. I'm kinda glad I went, it wasn't bad. For more pictures, please go here.

:) eKa @ 5:02:00 PM •


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