The 15th annual Shilin Official Residence Chrysanthemum Exhibition was held from November 27 to December 10, 2016 at the former residence of late Republic of China President Chiang Kai-shek in the suburbs of Taipei City, Taiwan.
Featuring chrysanthemums, the exhibition was originally held to celebrate Chiang Kai-Shek’s birthday on October 31, as the chrysanthemum is a symbol of longevity and rejuvenation in Chinese society. Since 2002, the exhibition has been held in November every year to advocate horticulture, raise awareness of environmental protection, and promote tourism in Taipei City.
The exhibition is divided into 10 sections, with 16 creative sport-themed green and floral carvings. Included is a model stadium for the 2017 World University Games to be held in Taipei City on August 23-28, 2017, a 3.2-meter-high chrysanthemum bear, which is the mascot of the World University Games, a sea of sunflowers consisting of some 20,000 individual plants, and a 4-meter-high dinosaur.
Over 100 varieties of chrysanthemums — including dahlia, cliff, Zhang, bonsai, and Daliju — are used to create the masterfully created displays at the event.
The Daliju chrysanthemum is cultivated by staffers of the Shilin Official Residence Park. Amazingly in 2015, a single Daliju chrysanthemum plant produced a record high 2,430 flowers. This year, it only produced 1,600 flowers due to bad weather. The total number of chrysanthemums on exhibit is over 100,000.
The Shilin Official Residence Chrysanthemum Exhibition is the largest exhibition of its kind in Taiwan, and it has attracted numerous visitors every year. In addition to the chrysanthemum exposition, a plum flower exhibition and an orchid exhibition are also held annually.
Located in the Shilin District, Taipei City, the Shilin Official Residence was the home of late President and his wife, Madam Chiang, from 1950 until his death on April 5, 1975.
Covering an area of more than 1,300 square meters (139,930 square feet), the Shilin Official Residence has been designated as a historical site. Since it was first opened to the public in 1996, it has become a pioneering ecology park and a favorite holiday destination for the public.
Upon entering the park, one first encounters Madame Chiang’s former Cadillac and her favorite rose garden, along with white plum trees. Besides the main residence, the compound includes the Horticulture Exhibition Hall, the guesthouse, Victory Chapel, Chinese- and Western-style gardens, the Ciyun Pavilion, and the Xinlan Pavilion.
The Victoria Chapel was where Chiang Kai-Shek and Madame Chiang used to pray, and it was the location of elegant weddings for Chiang’s family. It remains a popular spot for newlywed photoshoots.
Please watch this video of the exhibition:
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