One of the key traditions to welcome the Chinese New Year (CNY) is to clean your home and decorate it with flowers… so that’s why there are currently several flower markets all around Hong Kong.
The flower market sare open from noon to midnight every day until February 19, 2015. I went around 1pm when it was not crowded, as I had Lina with me. I visited the largest one, the one in Victoria Park, on Saturday, which happened to be Valentine’s Day – so of course, there were red roses and some very cheesy flower arrangements, like those bears, on sale.
The market occupies the whole south side of the park and includes lots of flower stalls (of course) but also food and beverage sellers as well as shops with lots of knickknacks. I did not pay much attention to all the soft toys, games and accessories on sale – but apparently this year there seems to be a lot of political-themed items (at least according to this blog post).
I’m always amazed by the huge variety of flowers, bushes and trees being sold – it’s fascinating to see!
A classic, but very poisonous plant for CNY is the so-called cow’s udder. That’s the informal name, given to it because of its shape. The official name is solanum mammosum.
Of course, the most iconic and widely sold flower is the orchid – and there are so many colours and arrangements, it just depends on how much money you want to spend!
Plum branches are very beautiful too – when you purchase them, they are quite bare looking… but once you bring them inside, where it’s warm, the blossoms will start to open up. These ones are called ume plum and are native to Asia.
Finally, lucky bamboo is also important for New Year. Lucky bamboo, believed by Chinese Fen Shui, will bring prosperity, fortune and happiness to whoever has them, and improve feng shui (or Chi) wherever they are placed. So no wonder these are being sold at the flower market too!