Aranda Lee Kuan Yew (李光耀蜻蜓万代兰)
24 Mar 2015
Singapore, 24 March 2015 - The National Parks Board has named a Singapore Botanic Gardens orchid hybrid in honour of Mr Lee Kuan Yew, former Prime Minister and Minister Mentor of Singapore.
Mr Lee Kuan Yew was the visionary and architect behind Singapore’s transformation into a premier tropical Garden City. On 16 June 1963, Mr Lee launched the first nationwide tree planting campaign, and unveiled the Garden City vision in 1967. To achieve this vision, he requested all government agencies, schools, organisations, and residents to green up their buildings, roadsides and other infrastructure. He took personal interest in the details of the plantings, right down to the aeration of the roots and watering of the trees.
Mr Lee set up the Garden City Action Committee because he felt it was important that various public agencies work closely together to make greenery an integral part of the country’s infrastructure. NParks and its predecessor the Parks and Recreation Department, were formed because Mr Lee believed that an agency with staff trained in horticulture, botany and other areas relevant to maintaining greenery was necessary to oversee the Green Campaign, as he termed it. As a result of his efforts, Singapore’s roads and neighbourhoods are today filled with lush greenery and vibrant biodiversity.
From a Garden City, Singapore has progressed to a City in a Garden because of the policies Mr Lee set in place more than 50 years ago. None of this would have been possible if not for Mr Lee’s vision and commitment to creating the best possible living environment for all Singaporeans to enjoy.
Aranda Lee Kuan Yew
Aranda Lee Kuan Yew (李光耀蜻蜓万代兰) is a vigorous and robust new hybrid. It produces flower sprays that bear up to ten flowers each, with each bloom measuring about 9.5 cm to 10.5 cm across. The sepals and petals are bright greenish golden yellow with light tessellations and a tinge of white at the base. Each bloom is complemented by a contrasting light brown waxy lip.
The hybrid’s parentage is the Arachnis hookeriana and the Vanda Golden Moon. Arachnis hookeriana is a species that is native to Singapore, and is an epiphytic plant that grows in full sun, producing lasting scorpion-shaped flowers. The Vanda Golden Moon is a large-flowered Hawaiian hybrid that contains the following species in its lineage; Vanda dearei from Borneo, Vanda sanderiana & Vanda lamellata from the Philippines, and Vanda curvifolia from Thailand.
A match with Vanda Kwa Geok Choo
The Aranda Lee Kuan Yew is well-matched with an earlier Singapore Botanic Gardens orchid hybrid named after Mrs Lee, Vanda Kwa Geok Choo（柯玉芝万代兰）, in terms of colour, form and stature. Both hybrids share a few species in both their lineages, namely Vanda dearei, Vanda sanderiana and Vanda curvifolia.
The Vanda Kwa Geok Choo, a hybrid of the Vanda Amelita Ramos and Vanda Harvest Time, was named after Mrs Lee Kuan Yew during the opening ceremony of the National Orchid Garden, Singapore Botanic Gardens on 20 October 1995. It produces large, fragrant flowers, measuring 7 to 9 cm across, that are of good substance.