Remembering Lee Kuan Yew

Gardens by the Bay plants new tree for Mr Lee Kuan Yew

SINGAPORE - Gardens by the Bay now has a new tree that is dedicated to Mr Lee Kuan Yew - the visionary behind Singapore's transformation into a garden city.

As a tribute to Singapore's first prime minister, 91, who died on Monday, some 100 staff of the Gardens by the Bay held a tree planting ceremony on Friday morning.

The Sepetir daun tebal, a timber tree of a species native to Singapore's primary forests, was planted at the Golden Garden, near the main entrance to the attraction.

An accompanying plaque, acknowledging Mr Lee as the father of Singapore's garden city, was also unveiled at the ceremony.

The 13m-tall young tree, which can grow till more than 70m high, was meant to have been planted by Mr Lee during a visit that he was planning to make earlier this year.

He began planting trees 51 years ago as part of his efforts to keep Singapore green, and had an unbroken record of planting at least a tree every year since then.

Dr Tan Wee Kiat, chief executive officer of Gardens by the Bay, said: "Mr Lee spearheaded the garden city movement by planting the first tree. He was supposed to plant this tree here, and so, we felt it was appropriate to finish the proposed act today."