International Garden Competition (DIGC) 2014 was officially launched at ‘The Venue, Downtown Dubai’ on Mohammed Bin Rashid Boulevard, at the foot of Burj Khalifa — the world’s tallest building, developed by Emaar Properties.
The competition which runs until April 6th from 10am to 10pm is organized and hosted by Purelife Events, Exhibitions & Conferences, and held under the patronage of Dubai Municipality; with Strategic Sponsorship from Dubai Calendar and Traders Hotel, which is also the Official Hotel Partner; support from the Venue Sponsorship partner Emaar; Diamond Sponsorship from Nestlé; Gold Sponsorship from Cool-Group;and Platinum Sponsorship from the Desert Group, alongside JKD Hortitech and Lokrit.
Visitors toured the garden designs of the 13 regional and global companies participating, and witnessed product demonstrations of the latest gardening trends and innovations. Some of the most popular international trends that were exhibited include recycled garden art, organic home-grown foodstuffs, low maintenance gardens that use minimal water and composts, and eco-friendly technology that prevents the wastage of natural resources.
DIGC 2014 has attracted high-level decision makers and experts at the forefront of diverse fields such as landscaping, botany, architecture and horticulture. These specialists will tackle the arid climate to find solutions that balance beauty with eco-friendliness.
The participating companies are as follows: Mirak Irrigation & Landscaping, Toscana Landscaping & Pools, Jenny Flowers, Spring Rose Landscaping, Dubai Miracle Garden, TerraVerde: The Landscape Solution, Greenable Landscapes, Orchid Garden Centre, Akar Landscaping, Al-Memar Landscape, Heaven Art Landscape, Falcon Crest Landscape and Lokrit Garden Village.
The public are particularly encouraged to come and enjoy a magnificent family outing in a spectacular setting surrounded by natural beauty and serenity. To ensure that children don’t miss out on this wonderland, Fun City, the largest entertainment center in the region, is the exclusive partner that will host fun activities. The dazzling attractions included the sensational Lokrit Garden Village, Grand Floral Arena Stall, Raffle Draws, the Education Zone & Talks, Furniture Display, Best of Show Award and a Food Court to recharge the visitors’ energy levels.
Engineer Nabil Bin Haider, from Dubai Municipality said the Municipality:”patronage of this event is to support the creative ideas in the design and implementation of parks and focus on the two main axes, namely sustainability and smart solutions in the field of greening and gardening as well as to support the development and innovation in the design of the gardens to ensure the achievement of urban development and provide an environment decent living for residents and visitors to the city of Dubai”.
Nasser Khan, CEO of the organizers Purelife Events, Exhibitions & Conferences said: “Although we have been hoping for a massive turnout, the number of visitors surpassed all our expectations. Now we hope we will exceed their own expectations, by delivering an experience they will never forget. Dubai is famous for being a pioneer, and I can assure everyone who has not yet witnessed the stunning gardens that this is the first showcase of its kind in the entire region.”
Nadeem Abbas, Director of Purelife Events, Exhibitions & Conferences added: “Seeing photos of a garden is one thing, but actually experiencing it first hand is a completely different sensation. The spectacular blend of colors, the refreshing greenery and the soothing fragrances of the flowers all have to be experienced in person to be believed.”
The internationally respected judges are Elisabetta Sari, who has a project published in a book on eco-landscaping and has won awards in France, Italy and Ireland; Phil Evans, who has attracted a passionate Twitter following for his gardening master-tips; Jo Thompson, who has done everything from urban roof gardens to traditional country gardens in the UK; David Dodd, who is on the selection panel of RHS Chelsea Show Garden; Kamelia bin Zaal, Creative Landscape Director at Al Barari Firm Management and Second Nature Landscape Design; and Muhammad Jayyoussi of Emaar Properties, who has overseen stunning soft landscapes at Burj Khalifa, Downtown, The Dubai Mall, The Hotels, Dubai Marina, Community Centers.
Elisabetta Sari, a renowned gardening judge from Europe revealed that: “What impressed us most about the entries is that they didn’t just base their designs on the popular trends in the world right now. They went beyond that and tried to start their own trends.”
Agreeing with these sentiments, Phil Evans – a judge from the UK – said: “These designs have planted the seeds that will blossom into tomorrow’s trends. When they start to gain global popularity, Dubai can be proud that it masterminded this new era of eco-beauty.”
Meanwhile Kamelia bin Zaal, a respected judge on the panel explained: “It was immediately apparent to us that these competitors have spent many long months and years perfecting their designs. I have no doubt that even those who don’t win will still attract a loyal following of admirers from visitors and investors who appreciate beauty.”
One of the competitors TerraVerde commented “One of the most frequently asked questions by visitors is how they can create a garden of their own that has a similar Wow factor. Our response is to always seek professional advice regardless of the size of your garden”.
Another competitor, Heaven Art Landscape said: “When parents spend time with their young children in their gardens, they are not only teaching them to appreciate natural beauty; they are also teaching them that patience and hard work pays off, because when you plant a flower you must patiently nurture it until it blooms.”
One of the many satisfied visitors, Mrs Hana Ajinisummed up her experience on the first day: “I brought my entire family here today, but I am so impressed by the gorgeous beauty of the gardens that tomorrow I will also invite my friends and even my work colleagues!”
These comments were echoed by another visitor,EssamKaddourawho said: “For me, a beautiful home is not just about having stunning interiors, but also having a breathtaking garden on the exterior that makes you want to explore the outdoors.”
The companies that aregiving live demonstrations and showcasing their popular products to visitors over the next four days include Danube Buildmart, AlBaddad, Fiore Rosso, Ibn Nafees, Alomi Real Wood Floors, Gulf Perlite LLC Manufactures & Supplies, Maze Rattan, Foliage, Logical Decking, Amber Garden Centre, Global Light and JKD HortiTech.
The third day of DIGC will kick off at 10am on Saturday, April 5th, and the event will run until Sunday, April 6th, where the winner will then be announced at 6pm. Participants, visitors and amateur gardeners will learn precious insights on global trends in landscaping from the international judges as well as from various competitors’ designs.
The organizers have expressed their appreciation to the event’s generous supporters who include Dubai Municipality, Emaar, Dubai Tourism Commercial Marketing, Dubai Calendar, Traders Hotel, Fun City, Dubai Mall, Nestle Danube Buildmart, Al Baddad and Dubai Garden Center. Top media partners include Agriculture, Alsayegh Media, Landscape-Me Magazine, Home Owner Magazine, MK Magazine, Planteria EU, Gulf Agriculture and First Avenue.