A variety of flowers bloom together
at three Expo sites
Words by Yang Yu-ying Translated by Anna Yang
Photos provided by Information Bureau of Taichung City Government
The Nov. 3 grand opening of the Taichung World Flora Exposition is taking place at three different sites in Houli, Waipu and Fengyuan districts. In addition to the flower-related attractions at these three sites, where there will be a total of over 10,000 outstanding performances over the Expo’s six-month duration, the public is also welcomed to enjoy opening events at the Shuinan Economic and Trade Park between Nov. 3 and 5.
Fengyuan Expo Site: Wedding flowers theme
Among the three locations for the Flora Expo–which will last six months–the Fengyuan site does not collect admission tickets. The site is divided into five areas, with the main theme for areas 1 to 4 being “Wedding”, with art installations including a church, flower bouquet and many other wedding-related items. One of these exhibition areas also specifically introduces Fengyuan’s local pastry culture and development.
Fengyuan’s fifth area highlights a “Water and Flower Palette” theme, as the Ruanbizi Creek runs through the site, with four landscape designs combining waterway banks and flowers.
Houli Horse Ranch: Enjoying national treasures and equestrian displays
The sizable Houli Horse Ranch & Forest Park Area can be further divided into a forest park and a horse farm park. Along the 1.2-kilometer “Shrine Flower Road” (between the Houli Railway Station and Horse Ranch), you can observe the forest and a sea of flowers. At night, this area is transformed with a unique evening ambiance that allows visitors to enjoy the shapes created by lights and shadows.
At the main entrance of Houli Horse Ranch is the Blossom Pavilion, with a flower-shaped design. The two rounded buildings are used as exhibition spaces. Part of the pavilion is the General Commercial Exhibition Space, used for international Flora Expo competitions, and the Orchid Ecological Greenhouse showcases Taiwan orchid industry development and history.
Taiwan’s only international-standard Equestrian Stadium will be the site of Flora Expo performances by a guest equestrian team from Almaty, Kazakhstan. In addition, the renowned National Palace Museum treasure Jadeite Cabbage as well as the Smaller Jadeite Cabbage and a digital version of the museum’s famous “One Hundred Horses” painting will be displayed at this site.
Houli Forest Park Area: Listening to the sound of blossom
The Houli Forest Park was once an unused military camp. Many native tree species have been cultivated on its grounds to display the concept of harmonious living between humans and nature and, to create a Flora Expo forest area, Taichung City Government has preserved over 1,500 of these trees at the site.
The main Discovery Pavilion exhibition hall in the Forest Park is built with perforated bricks recycled from green building materials. This exhibition hall utilizes eight themes by which visitors can experience a virtual “Dajia River Ecological Tour” that takes participants from beautiful wetlands at sea level up to the 3,886-meter summit of Snow Mountain. As you pass through the leopard cats’ habitat on this tour, you will also encounter the Formosan landlocked salmon in Cijiawan Stream.
As you step out of Discovery Pavilion, you can see the 15-meter-tall giant installation artwork, “Listen to the Sound of Blossoms”, which consists of 697 bionic flower-opening devices, changing according to different sounds together with various day and night light and shadow effects. It is certainly well worth witnessing this combination of technology, art and mechanics being brought to life.
Waipu Expo Site: Flowers, fruit and agriculture
“Flower and Fruit Village” is the main theme at the Waipu Expo site. By the entrance here are leopard cat-decorated floats that received the highest number of public votes during the 2017 national holiday parade. The Agri-tech and Conservation Pavilion is another Waipu exhibition area, with an Arc of Plants created from over 1,000 rare and endangered plant species. Yet another exhibition area is the Harvest Blessing Pavilion, showcasing a new agricultural industry value chain, from the development of cultivars to production.
The ground in the Harvest Blessing Pavilion exhibition hall is covered with soil, making visitors feel like they’re walking in a field. This hall showcases Taiwan’s four main agriculture products–rice, fruit, mushrooms and tea. Here, visitors can see and experience agricultural living that is different from that of traditional farms.
The main design material at the Waipu Expo site is bamboo and visitors can enjoy the Green Bamboo Corridor, Water Recycling Bamboo Dome, and a DIY workshop, where they can experience the fun of making bamboo handicrafts.