Monday, June 25, 2012

The Flower Carpet

Every year for the past few years,
 I have bought an angel wing begonia.
I  find the name "angel wing" appealing,
as are the succulent green leaves,
and the fact that begonia flowers look delicate
 but are instead rugged survivors,
 unphased by relentless sun and drenching rains.

And that's why these West Indies natives are the flower of choice
for an annual phenomenon called the  Belgian flower carpet.
Thousands of begonias are carefully placed by volunteers
to create a massive living carpet for the public to enjoy.
According to the web site below,
 the first Belgian flower carpet was created in 1971
by landscape achitect E. Stautemans. It measured around 84 yards by 27 yards,
although a subsequent flower carpet in Ghent measured more than 178 yards long.

The  link below shows some incredible streaming photos
that detail the creation of the intricately designed flower carpets.
Go to the page  "Making a Carpet,"
but click on the tab  "The Floral Carpet"
 to view selected carpets from 1976 to 2010:

The Belgian flower carpet begonias come in many dazzling colors,
but choices for summer begonias here where I live
are limited to white or shades of pink, red, and sometimes coral.
Here are a couple more of mine:

Not enough to design a flower carpet,
but lovely nonetheless.

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