Singapore Botanic Garden – Voyages to Antiquity
In the cool mountain areas of Malaysia, several dozens of indigenous wild orchids grow, thriving in a moist environment that does not change but is the same day in and day out. As we walked into the glass surrounded ‘greenhouse’ that is part of the Orchid Centre’s exhibit of this region; we escaped from the heat and humidity of a typical Singapore rainy season morning into blissful coolness. Surrounded by a typical mountain backdrop of flora, rock and waterfalls, I was awash with memories of my early childhood in Washington and of the beautiful North West rain forest where I grew up. Flooded with images of that time, the colourful exotic flowers that my mother loved and grew appeared in riotous colour in my mind’s eye. Quite why I do not know, but a few tears had to be wiped away when I remembered the glorious bougainvillea, shocking red geraniums and voluptuous roses that were her passion. The Singapore National Orchid Centre has 1000 species and 2000 hybrids of orchids and opened in 1995. Living with in the Singapore Botanic Gardens, the VIP Orchid Centre which began in 1957, now lives in the National Orchid Centre. The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge visited here last summer and have a hybrid orchid dedicated to them. Noteworthy is that Prince William’s mother, Diana, has a memorial orchid dedicated to her. In every instance in this garden, the celebrities have personally visited in order to have an orchid dedicated to them. Diana is the one exception.