What to expect at the Asia Pacific Orchid Conference held in EXPO from Aug 16 to 20

Singapore is playing host to the event for the first time.

Chloe Tham

Chooses to watch the same three movies in rotation instead of catching a new one.

Published: 18 August 2023, 11:10 AM

Orchid shows, displays and a free marketplace are some activities to participate in at the Singapore EXPO from Aug 16 to 20 as part of the Asia Pacific Orchid Conference (APOC).

The conference is held every three years and this is the first time Singapore is playing host to it. This edition follows the theme of “Diversity, Conservation, Culture” and is organised by the National Parks Board (NParks) and the Orchid Society of South East Asia (OSSEA).

The five-day event features an orchid show, various displays, conference programmes and a marketplace with more than 50 international and local vendors.

The orchid show comprises an orchid plant competition and a landscape competition. Judged by esteemed orchid experts from Singapore and around the region, 21 displays are showcased by professional growers to compete for the top APOC titles.

Some participants hail from the Fern and Nature Society of the Philippines, Hyogo Prefecture Awaji Greenhouse, Indonesia Orchid Society of East Java and Orchid Society of Thailand under the Royal Patronage.

The award titles for the orchid plant competition include the Grand Champion Plant, Best Specimen Plant, Best Species and Best Hybrid. The landscape competition displays are judged based on Best Landscape (nine square metres) and Best Landscape (25 square metres).


The display by the Singapore Botanic Gardens – spanning 25 square metres – was awarded the top prize for Best Landscape. PHOTO CREDIT: YOUTHOPIA/CHLOE THAM


Visitors can also expect to see a 2.6-metre display by floral designer Harijanto Setiawan, titled Passage of Clouds. Situated right at the entrance of the event, the structure features several critically endangered orchid species and 2,000 pieces of recycled Balinese bamboo.

Another non-competitive display are 10 Ikebana structures with different types of orchids such as the Phalaenopsis and Cattleya. Created by the Ikebana International Singapore Chapter 135, the displays draw inspiration from the lushness of a tropical paradise.


Together with orchids, the structures feature complementary botanicals like bamboo, ferns and sculptural branches. PHOTO CREDIT: YOUTHOPIA/CHLOE THAM


Located several metres away is a total of 20 design pieces consisting of various orchid species with natural floral and foliage materials. Arranged by the Floral Designers Society it is a floral exhibit that follows the theme of Orchid Rhapsodies.

Floristry students from the Institute of Technical Education (ITE) College Central created a fashion showcase with a focus on orchids. Their collection of wearable floral art includes floral crowns, jewellery and footwear.


Students from the Nitec in Floristry learn to create hand-tied bouquets, set up floral art displays for events and manage floristry shop operations. PHOTO CREDIT: YOUTHOPIA/CHLOE THAM


Over 250 items from private collector Mr Hsien Yoong How are also on display at the event. Mr Hsien is an Honorary Research Fellow of the Singapore Botanic Gardens and has spent more than 35 years building up his collection.

Commemorative coin producer the Singapore Mint has 30 coins and medallions from their collection on display together with Mr Hsien.

Another section of the event presents an Orchid Photo Gallery with 30 photos contributed by the public. In partnership with Nikon Singapore and the Photographic Society of Singapore, the gallery showcases the diversity of orchids.

Additionally, visitors may take a look at a selection of over 20 botanical watercolour reproductions at the Botanical Illustration Gallery – collectively titled Orchids & Art. The art pieces featured at the event were chosen from over 2,000 botanical paintings from the Singapore Botanic Gardens’ archives.


A painting of the Singapore Nervilia is on display at the event. It is an endemic orchid species that is known only from the Bukit Timah Nature Reserve. PHOTO CREDIT: YOUTHOPIA/CHLOE THAM


The event also offers a marketplace that is open to the public. Featuring more than 50 local and international vendors, items for sale include exotic species of orchids and garden supplies.

Visitors who are interested to know more about orchid cultivation and conservation may attend plenary talks conducted by world-esteemed orchid experts and sharing sessions. Registrations for the conference programmes will be conducted on site of the event.

Singapore residents can purchase weekday tickets at $9 for children (aged three to twelve) and seniors (aged 60 years old and above), and on weekends for $12. Adults are charged $15 and $20 for weekday and weekend tickets respectively.

Admission to the marketplace is free. Ticket prices exclude booking fees and are available for purchase via SISTIC until Aug 20.

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