The TCM Garden: Nanyang Herb Garden

Home to medicinal herbs as far as the eye can see, Nanyang Herb Garden contains a diverse number of plants used for Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM). It’s caretaker, Dr. Zhuang Minshan, a registered TCM physician, looks after all these plants with the help of one staff member and some volunteers.

Plants here are grown in neatly arranged rows. They include Fishwort, Sabah Snake Grass, Black Face General, Snakeweed, Bandicoot Berry, Jiaogulan, Two-Flowered Oldenlandia, Toothache Plant, Soapbush, Singapore Rhododendron and even Ashwaganda, also known as Indian Ginseng, which Dr. Zhuang grew from seed. These are just some of a multitude of plants which surround the property.

TCM herb garden Singapore
Fishwort Singapore

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Project Black Gold Singapore

Community Composting in Singapore: Project Black Gold

Want to learn how to do aerobic composting in Singapore? Project Black Gold is a community food scrap composting initiative in Singapore run by Cuifen Pui and Chingwei Chen. Passionate about compost making and building communities, these two got together to co-create and launch Project Black Gold during the pandemic, with the support of other compost makers. Their goals? To teach people how to make compost using food scraps and to grow this community movement.

When physical distancing measures eased, Chingwei began by teaching theory for free over Zoom to a group of condomium residents in Bukit Gombak, and meeting with a smaller group to do hands-on activities. A few months later, Cuifen initiated a series of online teaching for volunteers and nearby residents of Jurong Lake Gardens, although it took many more months before hands-on could take place. From this point, Chingwei went on to start 3 more locations at Tampines.

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christmas gifts for gardeners 2023

Christmas Gift Guide for Gardeners 2022: Best Gifts for Gardeners

Christmas is coming, and that means it’s time to start thinking about what gifts to buy for your friends and family. If you have a gardener in your life, read on! In this blog post, I will share some of the best Christmas gifts for gardeners this year in Singapore. I hope this list helps you find the perfect gift!

  1. Singapore Botanic Gardens Desk Calendar 2023 – The calendar features beautiful botanical watercolour artwork by Sri Lankan artists and brothers James and Charles de Alwis, and were painted between 1893 and 1907. Get it here for $13 before it sells out like it usually does.
  2. Digital Gift Card – Not sure what to get a friend or family member who loves gardening? Why not get him or her a gift card instead? Potta Plantta, The Garden Store, Noah Garden Centre and Tumbleweed offers digital gift cards from $30.
  3. NaturalGRO liquid fertilisers, soil conditioners and plant protection – NaturalGro now offers a range of products to suit any gardener. Buy one product, or save by getting their bundle combo. Prices start at $25 for the bundle combo, find it here.
  4. Plant a Tree Mug from ShiokFarm – Plant a tree on behalf of your friend when you gift him or her this mug, available for $20 each here.
  5. Easy Peasy Gardening Kit by Soil Social and Seed Folks – Perfect for beginner gardeners, this kit includes a choice of basil seed mix (dark opal, lettuce and lemon basil) or a pair of ornamental plant cuttings, 3.8L root pouch, spade, watering device and 5L soil mix. The kit will be accompanied with growing guide and a step-by-step video to guide you through the process. Pick from either an edible or ornamental plant kit, get it here for a festive price of $42.
  6. Tropical Plants in Focus: Botanical Illustration at the Singapore Botanic Garden – Authored by Michele Rodda, this book outlines the development of botanical illustration in Singapore, and in particular at the Gardens. It showcases a selection of illustrations which can be viewed in person at the Singapore Botanic Gardens’ Botanical Art Gallery. Buy the book here.
  7. Locally made plant pigments from Wild Dot – Have a friend or family member who enjoys painting? Why not get them some locally made plant pigments? Made from plant parts sourced from Indigo, Yellow Flame tree, Blue Butterfly Pea, Orange Cosmos and Mango tree. Shop their products here.
  8. Bollywood Farms Christmas  Hamper –  Impress your friends or family with this Christmas hamper. It contains 1 free Bali basket, 1 2023 calendar, 1 loaf ginger bread sliced banana bread, 1 pot of Lemongrass, 1 bottle chocolate chip cookies, 1 bottle pandan cookies, 1 bottle papaya pickles, 1 bottle Ikan bilis & peanuts, 1 bottle Sambal, 1 Bollywood badge, and 1 Bollywood keychain. Get it at $80 nett, please enquire at 68985001.
  9. Pass It On Plantable Candles – Each plantable soy candle comes with a paper lid embedded with seeds and a vessel that can be reused as a cache pot, or buy candle refills to keep reusing the vessel. With each purchase, one or more trees are planted by their NGO partner. Prices start at $35. Get it here.
  10. Giant Monstera  Throw Blanket – Measuring 2 metres by 2 metres, this fleece lined throw blanket is a statement piece on the sofa or bed. Get it for $143.21 on Frecklepot’s Amazon store here. Stylish aroid pillows and begonia or monstera tufted rugs are also available on their Amazon store.

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Singapore Garden Festival 2022: Highlights from Singapore Botanic Gardens & Orchard Road

The Singapore Garden Festival 2022 is back after a four year hiatus, which is a pretty exciting thing for gardeners and plant lovers who fancy ornamental blooms, show gardens, floral displays, edible plants and a spot of shopping for plants and garden products. This time, the Singapore Garden Festival will be held at the Singapore Botanic Gardens from now till 9 August, and at ION Orchard and Ngee Ann City till 7 August.

Here are the highlights from all three venues!

SGF 2022

Singapore Botanic Gardens

While you are at the Singapore Botanic Gardens, be prepared to marvel at the stunning entries of The Orchid Competition, co-organised with the Orchid Society of Southeast Asia (OSSEA). Visitors can view more than 400 rare and exquisite orchids, including warm and cool-growing species and hybrids found globally in different regions, submitted by professional growers and hobbyists. These specimens are housed at Burkill Hall, Tan Hoon Siang Mist House and Sembcorp Cool House.

SGF Orchid Competition Singapore Botanic Gardens
Warm growing orchids in Burkill Hall
OSSEA orchid competition 2022
Warm growing orchids in Burkill Hall

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