- Special Pages
HONG KONG: It’s notorious for its cramped living conditions, traffic-clogged streets and polluted air, but once a year Hong Kong celebrates all things green at the city’s flower show.
Though most residents have no outdoor space for gardening, thousands flock to the annual 10-day event, which started on Friday and covers six football pitches in the central Victoria Park.
In contrast to the surrounding apartment and office blocks, the park has been overtaken by cascades of orchids — the show’s theme flower — along with tulips and kitsch floral sculptures, from giant ants to pandas and toadstools.
Some visitors come just to photograph the lavish displays, but many are picking up plants and gardening equipment.
It’s a testament to the fact that, despite Hong Kong’s cheek-by-jowl and high-rise lifestyle, its residents crave greenery and are making the most of the limited space they have to grow plants.
Queenie Wong, who is studying Chinese medicine at Hong Kong Baptist University, held a tiny fern in a pot, which she had just bought from one of the stalls.
“I don’t grow anything at home because I don’t have the space. I’ll take care of this plant in my university office, which is where I spend most of my time,” she said.