Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Singapore: Flower Dome and Cloud Forest

After checking out the Supertrees in Singapore's Gardens by the Bay, Martha and I mosied over to the Flower Dome and Cloud Forest buildings, the two "cooled conservatories,"
which is a euphemism for "cold as a meat locker, crazy impressive and yet totally weird greenhouses."  These two domes were quite interesting and not a little bit crazy/over-the-top/excessive.

The Flower Dome houses flowers, as you would expect, but not the tropical variety you would imagine... instead it's got succulents, baobabs and other flowering desert plants from around the world (Australia, Chile, California and Africa, to name a few places), all hanging out in the super arid, super chilly glass dome:

 




Cacti and succulents abound:


There was also an area styled like a European garden:


Kangaroo's paws and other flowers from the Australian part of the Flower Dome:


Martha posing under a trellis designed for picture taking:


Next we hit up the Cloud Forest, which recreates a high-altitude tropical cloud forest, complete with 35 meter high indoor mountain from which emerges the world's largest indoor waterfall:



The Cloud Forest is the opposite of the Flower Dome in that it is super lush and the air is moist (although pretty cold, too).  The  mountain is covered in water loving orchids, ferns, carnivorous pitcher plants, and bromeliads:


The mist coming off the waterfall is a bit eerie:


Lots and lots of fleurs:


You can take an elevator part way up the mountain and then walk along the raised walkway:


Standing inside the mountain and looking out through the waterfall was pretty cool:


Aaaand, finally, we made our way back through the Marina Bay Sands building, taking the escalator down over the weird indoor canal, complete with gondolas:


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