Two months ago I finally got the opportunity to visit Asia and of course I made a stop in Singapore. It has been my dream to visit the city for a long time. And one of the big reasons is the famous orchid garden.
The National Orchid Garden is actually located within the Singapore Botanic Gardens. It’s a world-famous garden, but surprisingly, it has only been open for a little over 20 years.
It is located on top of the highest hill within the Botanic Gardens and in total, it has over 60,000 orchid plants. You will find 1000 different species and over 2000 different hybrids.
The garden was designed around the theme of color, with plants separated into four different color zones. You have the spring zone, which has a lot of bright shades like gold and yellow, the summer zone with a lot of strong reds and pinks, the autumn zone which has more muted colors and the winter zone which features whites and blues. Other trees, bushes and plants are chosen specifically to match the orchids and to fit in with this color scheme.
As a part of the orchid garden, there is a celebrity orchid garden. This little subdivision features orchids that are named after celebrities. Most of them are Asian celebrities, naturally, like movie stars and singers from China, Japan, South Korea, Taiwan and of course Singapore. But they also have orchids named after celebrities we in the West would recognize. For example, I saw a Margaret Thatcher orchid.
To be honest, I’m not entirely sure what the point of this little celebrity orchid garden was. I guess I’ve never really been into celebrities myself, so maybe that’s why don’t get it, but I just didn’t see the connection. None of the orchids looked like the celebrities they were named after, so how do they choose? How do they choose which orchid would get which celebrity’s name? And why name them that way at all?
I guess it probably has to do with marketing. It probably brings in people. And I suppose, if it helps them be more profitable than I’m all for it. The world needs more beautiful places like this orchid garden and if they are profitable, then more will exist. It’s so much nicer than another sports stadium.
My favorite part of the orchid garden was the tea. That’s right, I was able to have a cup of tea. There’s a little tea garden located within the botanical garden, where you can sit indoors and have your choice of different varieties of tea. I ordered a nice green tea and it was excellent.
It was also nice to get out of the heat for a while. Even though the tea was hot, just sitting down indoors was refreshing. Singapore is located near the equator and is extremely hot all year round, even in November when I was there. It definitely gets to you after a while, the heat and humidity. It feels like you will melt into the ground. So stopping for a nice cup of tea was definitely a highlight.
I also got to visit the nursery, where young seedlings were raised. This was an indoor area and I was thrilled to see that the seedlings were being lit by LED grow lights. It was really cool to see them use the same lighting principles that I’ve seen and indoor gardens everywhere, including the one I have set up for myself. I really enjoyed seeing some of the LED grow lights being used to grow such a difficult flower like the orchid.
If you’re ever in Singapore, you definitely don’t want to miss the National Orchid Garden. Not only is it extremely beautiful, but it also makes a nice change of pace from the hectic city. It’s hot, but is not as hot as walking around the rest of the city, because at least you’re surrounded by nature.