June 3, 2002
Floriade 2002 prepares to greet international visitors

Work is well underway at the site of the newest Floriade, in preparation for their spring 2002 opening. Held once every 10 years at a different site in the Netherlands, this fifth horticultural extravaganza has been under construction since 1996 and promises to be the best yet. With a theme of “feel the art of nature,” and as a leading showcase for all aspects of Dutch horticulture, Floriade 2002 will indeed be a “feast for the senses,” promise show organizers.

     Perhaps the largest challenge of creating Floriade, under the guidance of renowned landscape architect Niek Roozen, is the scale of the project. Constructed on 65 ha of polder land, in the first year of construction 120,000 m3 of ground were relocated and over 25,000 trees and shrubs were planted. Big Spotters Hill, inspired by the Egyptian Pyramid of Cheops, will dominate the park. Over 500,000 cubic metres of sand were used in the construction of this engineering feat, which measures 230 by 230 m at the base. And, at a height of 45 m, Big Spotters Hill will provide a truly magnificent panoramic view of the Floriade park.

     A large glasshouse, measuring 100 m by 278 m will house an amazing indoor landscape as well as food and rest areas, and will be another focal point of Floriade.

     There will also be an international flavour to Floriade, as over 30 countries to date have agreed to participate through the construction of individual show gardens.

     Expected to draw over three million visitors in total and over one million international visitors, Floriade is a huge boost to the tourist as well as the many horticultural industries represented. Further information is available on the website: www.Floriade.com.

     An industry study tour to the Netherlands is currently being organized by Landscape Ontario, with visits planned to Floriade as well as leading nursery, garden centre and display garden/landscape sites. Call 905-875-1805 or fax 905-875-0183 for more information.