Scan Magazine, Issue 88, May 2016

Page 66

Scan Magazine | Special Theme | Top Ten Summer Experiences in Sweden

Left: Head gardener Anders Stålhand. Above: Work by Lee Jaehyo for the Land Art exhibition. Below: Stuart Ian Frost, A fior di pelle, as part of the Land Art exhibition. Copyright: Arte Sella. Photos: Giacomo Bianchi.

A thousand lilies and a window to biodiversity Ever since the Gothenburg Botanical Garden was founded in 1923, its focus has been on presenting botany and biodiversity to the public in a beautiful way. In February this year, 4,800 people visited the gardens to take part in the opening ceremony of Gothenburg Green World, presenting a year of green experiences to inspire a greener world. By Linnea Dunne | Photos: Gothenburg Botanical Garden

“In preparation for this big initiative, we planted hundreds of thousands of plants last autumn, which are now blooming,” says head gardener Anders Stålhand about the collaborative effort between Gunnebo House and Gardens, Liseberg Amusement Park, the Garden Society of Gothenburg, the City of Gothenburg and the Botanical Garden. On 2 July, a forgotten part of the Botanical Garden, the Smithska Valley, will be celebrated with the Take a Walk on the Wild Side event. “We’ve updated and raised the level of care of large parts of the garden, and around a thousand lilies will be blooming,” says Stålhand. “It’ll also get much easier to get to the very top of the mountain with stunning views across Gothenburg.” Another of the project highlights, according to the head gardener, will be Land 66 | Issue 88 | May 2016

Art, a collection of nature installations exhibited across the Botanical Garden, Stadshusparken Mölndal and Gunnebo House and Gardens. Five artists from the Arte Sellas network, all inspired by nature and working with art in its sculptural form, will take part in the exhibition which runs from July. “It’ll spark questions around experiences and flora otherwise rarely raised here,” says Stålhand. “Certainly for anyone with an interest in art generally and land art specifically, this exhibition is a first for this region.” A landscape engineer with experience from nurseries and gardening institutes, now also active as a writer, columnist and TV gardening expert, Stålhand certainly knows what he is talking about. Then again, perhaps Gothenburg Botanical Garden’s 430 acres with 16,000 plant species and hybrids – the largest of its kind in all of northern Europe – is

the perfect base for him. Its collection of 1,500 species of tropical orchids is the largest in Sweden, and one of the world’s greatest collections of bulbs and tubers can also be found here. Add a spectacular waterfall, a herb garden, a Japanese valley and a multifaceted annual events and exhibition programme, and this Gothenburg city centre gem will appear as nothing short of paradise for botany and horticulture enthusiasts.

Illustration of the plans for the Smithska Valley, which will be opened in July.

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