Wetenschap - 11 april 2002

Wageningen UR presents butterfly pavilion at Floriade 2002

Wageningen UR presents butterfly pavilion at Floriade 2002

Once every ten years the Netherlands is host to the world's largest international horticulture exhibition, the Floriade. This year the exhibition was opened on 5 April by Queen Beatrix. Three million visitors are expected during the six months that the Floriade is open, and Wageningen UR is there with an unusual pavilion in the shape of a butterfly.

The Floriade has been built in the 150-year-old polder Haarlemmermeer, close to Schiphol. The most eye-catching element of the exposition is Big Spotters' Hill, a forty-metre-high sand pyramid topped by an open and colourful sculpture, but just as eye-catching are the flowers of the one million bulbs in the valley by the lake.

A walk through the park leads the visitors along and through the exhibits of 36 countries, from the striking blue Moroccan exhibit, the simple garden from Luxembourg to the Asian Village along the lake, and the very diverse buildings and gardens presented by Dutch organisations. The Wageningen UR pavilion is almost lost in all the abundance, although it is a striking building. It takes the form of a butterfly, as the insect is an excellent indicator of the quality of the living environment which Wageningen UR stands for. | M.W.

More information at www.floriade.nl and www.wageningen-ur.nl/floriade.

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