SINGAPORE -A garden that celebrates the beauty of wayside plants has bagged one of the top prizes at the Singapore Garden Festival.
The Wild And The Restless, an 80 sq m garden by Malaysian landscape designer Inch Lim, features a tall bamboo screen, and a selection of mostly native wild plants or exotics that migrated from places such as the Americas to become common wayside plants in South-east Asia.
It is now on display at the biennial festival, which returns to Gardens By The Bay from Saturday (July 21) till Aug 3 with a variety of displays by acclaimed garden and floral designers.
At a ceremony held at the Gardens on Friday, 63-year-old Lim scooped up the Best of Show, Gold and Horticulture Excellence awards in the competitive landscape gardens category.
Social and Family Development Minister Desmond Lee gave out awards to Lim and other designers from the competitive landscape gardens, fantasy gardens, floral windows to the world and balcony gardens categories.
"I am pleased to know that SGF continues to attract top landscape and floral design talents," said Mr Lee in his speech. "This year, we are proud to host some 40 designers, who are among the best in their profession. These include 15 prominent local designers."
This year's festival, organised by the National Parks Board (NParks) and Gardens by the Bay, was conceptualised as a tropical rainforest garden with simulated valleys, mountains and open plains. It features more than 70 displays by designers local and international, professional and amateur.
The festival's creative director Derek Chan said the show is an "interpretation of how Singapore would look like as a biophilic City in a Garden in the next century".
Aside from the competitive displays, other highlights are an Orchid Extravaganza, Asean Garden, floral jamming sessions and a marketplace.
The festival's seventh edition features two new offshoots - the SGF Orchid Show, which ran at the National Orchid Garden and other parts of the Singapore Botanic Gardens in April, and the SGF Horticulture Show, which will be held next year at Jurong Lake Gardens.
The main show at Gardens by the Bay is spread over 10ha across The Meadow, Supertree Grove and Flower Dome. More than 600,000 visitors are expected this year.
South African designer Leon Kluge, 38, won Best of Show, Gold and Horticulture Excellence awards in the fantasy gardens category. Aloes, impala lilies and olive trees are some of the plants in his African Thunder display.
It tells the story of the rain coming back down in Africa when the land is on the cusp between the dry and wet seasons.
Kluge, who won a Gold Medal (Landscape Gardens) and Best Lighting Award (Outdoor) at the festival two years ago, said: "The public will hopefully feel the heartbeat of Africa."
The Straits Times is the official media partner of the Singapore Garden Festival.