#85, Bottle Tree Park

Finally have time to blog a little!

Awhile back, I had the awesome opportunity of visiting Blue Bottle Park at Sembawang, which was organized by David! It was really something different, and I didn't feel like I was in Singapore, at all. It's a good getaway from the hustle and bustle of city life. 

So I guess the point of this post is just to showcase the place itself: may the photos speak for themselves.

The park has its origins with five people, who were inspired to reconnect people to nature and had (I might add, rather crazy) interest in horticulture. The impetus drove the bunch of them to buy some plants from Australia, including the "Bottle Tree", which the park gets its name from. It's a massive tree that grows one-metre in width (of its trunk) within two years, and later till two metres in the next 40 plus years.

So the journey started with getting off at Khatib MRT, and walking through a park connector. Incidentally, there was a palm plant flowering [1], which had bees visiting it. It was a blue-sky morning [2].

[1] Some palms which were flowering, attracting Apis bees.

[2] HDB blocks that had pretty tree paintings on them
[3] Tree paintings on the HDB at Nee Soon

[4] Walking through the park connector. It was rather sunny but enjoyable. Since it was only about 8am, the heat was was bearable. 

[5] Walking through a gated road that leads to Bottle Tree Park, I encountered this! Looks like a example of secondary forest stratification! Later during the day, a guy from the ground-up initiative (GUI) at the Bottle Tree Park mentioned that there were mature secondary forests around the area, which were previously rubber plantations.

[6] Also, epiphytes (like this Bird Nest's Fern and the mosses) hinge on these trunks!
[7] Finally reaching the exteriors of Bottle Tree Park, after a walk down a "quiet" lane.

[8] Passing by the Claoxylon indicum, which was flowering and full of Blue Bottle Flies! They're probably pollinators of the plant. The plant is also known as the Nappy Plant.

Anyway, I'll let the photographs do more of the talking! So we just roamed around the area, looking for insects. Found quite a lot of ants around! No photographs of them though.

Mangosteen plant

Bottle Tree (Brachychiton sp.) Disclaimer: Wiki doesn't provide much more information about the tree though!

A lotus pond as well, there's a restaurant overlooking it. Yes, it's an MRT track that you see in the background. Very conveniently near an MRT station!

There was even a man riding a rickshaw!
Visiting the flower garden, with butterflies fluttering about, (: If I'm not wrong, people are allowed to volunteer to do gardening at this particular part of the Bottle Tree Park.

A shed adjacent to where organically grown vegetables were sold. Nearby, there was a Durian Tree with lots of durian fruits! :D

An area for fishing :)

It was really quite a great time out, just walking around in the sun. There's a Ground-up initiative, at the place where people can learn about recycling & an eco-friendly way of living, which is really quite interesting. They even have a fly larvae to help decompose food waste!

And have you heard, Bottle Tree Park's lease has expired and is likely to be re-acquired by the government. It's sad to see a place like this go, since it is a relaxing getaway from the city. Wonder what BTP's fate would be, ultimately. I'm just sitting on the fence.

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