Nantes Tourisme invited the participants of the TBU to an evening event in the Courtyard of the Castle of the Dukes of Brittany. The glamorous environment was a good place to make the first contacts. Local delicacies from Brittany were offered at market stalls. Oysters, home-made cheese...
More Evening Event in the Château des ducs de Bretagne - Nantes
The Château des ducs de Bretagne (Castle of the Dukes of Brittany) impresses with its mighty fortification walls and through the good condition of its building in the Renaissance and Baroque style. After renovation at the beginning of the millennium, the castle was re-opened in 2007. It provides ...
More Château des ducs de Bretagne - Nantes
The construction of the Flower Carpet Brussels is just as interesting as the finished carpet in the historic surroundings. Hundreds of volunteers create this special work of art with approx. 700.000 begonias. The gray square is transformed in a very short time in a brilliantly luminous, colorful picture.
The actual making of the carpet is based on a plan worked out in advance, consisting of several stages. Everything starts, often a year in advance, with projects and scale models, illustrating a commissioned theme. Once the theme has been produced in representation and symbol, the number of flowers and color combinations calculated and the outlines finally drawn on the ground, then the work starts. The skilful, dedicated work of a hundred experienced gardeners and their enthusiasm enables them to put together this giant floral jigsaw in under four hours. The day before, the spaces between the floral patterns will already have been filled with rolled turf.
All begonias must be in a full bloom at the same day. The flowers are kept fresh and radiant for four long days. Just before the opening, 120 volunteers bring color to the carpet, based on a life-sized image which is laid down on the paving stones of the Grand-Place. A masterpiece of the gardeners and organizers!
It is not easy to stay for hours in a bent position, producing a homogeneous color pattern as not all flowers have exactly the same shade. Boxes of flowers with different color shades must be brought to other places again and again. The city cleaning tries to take any waste immediately away.
The work was carried out before the eyes of thousands of people with mobile telephones, cameras and video cameras and any errors would have been detected immediately. In the meantime the responsible organizers discuss the final details.
That day, rain showers made a break indispensable but the flower carpet was finished in time and could be opened in the evening on schedule with a sound and light show and fireworks (see Opening Flower Carpet).
We used the interruption by the rain to take a look at the inside of the historic City Hall.
Did you know that the flowers are packed together one by one, 300 to every square meter of the ground, so tightly (no soil is used at all) that they won’t be blown away by the first puff of wind, and create their own micro climate? In heat waves, the turf has to be watered to prevent it from shrinking, but if the weather is too wet, the grass can grow 4 to 5 centimeters in 3 days? The wonders of nature!
The Construction of the Flower Carpet Brussels
Every two years, the Flower Carpet Brussels is set up in the month of August. On the Grand Place in Brussels horticulturists create a floral masterpiece of 1,800 m² with 300 Begonias per m².
2014 is the 19th edition of this event. This years design is of an Anatolian kilim (woven carpet) to honor the 50th anniversary of the Turkish immigration, On 16 July 1964, Belgium and Turkey signed the bilateral convention which led to Turkish immigration in Belgium. Today 220000 Turkish born individuals are residing Belgium.
Kilims are an integral part of Turkish culture and are widely spread to Iran and Iraq, as well as to Azerbaijan and to the Caucasus. During Ottoman times, kilims were a status symbol and were presented as gifts to kings and sultans.
Hundreds of volunteers and craftsmen build these elaborate, ephemeral carpet. Up to 2 years in advance hundreds of thousands of flowers need to be reserved in order to bring them to bloom in the desired colors for the day on the Grand Place (see Construction of the Flower Carpet).
Just before the opening, 120 volunteers bring color to the carpet, based on a life-sized image drawn on micro-perforated plastic, which is fixed to the ground on top of a fine layer of sand.
The presentation of the carpet is accompanied by a magnificent light and sound show in the middle of the Gothic facades of Europe’s capital. A musical theme has been especially composed for this summer display. The concert is held every evening to accompany a splendid sound and light show!
Inauguration of the Flower Carpet in Brussels