Monday, January 23, 2012

Winter Travels - Part 3: Lake Gardens, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

While the large, hilly tract of Kuala Lumpur parkland known as Lake Gardens or Taman Tasik Perdana encompasses an array of different attractions, such as the Kuala Lumpur Bird, the National Monument, and the Hibiscus Garden, it also includes a main park that constitutes the Lake Gardens proper. Situated in a small valley and with the lake that gave the place its name at the center, this park contains a number of different plant collections, theme gardens, and facilities. These include a small Balinese garden, a sunken parterre, a Heliconia Garden, bamboo and cycad collections, an open-air theater, and a large playground for children.

View of the small Balinese-style garden

A glimpse of the parterre in the Sunken Garden as seen from under the pergola that runs around its edge

One of the bridges leading onto the island in the lake

The tiny Balinese-style garden, though somewhat overgrown, was one of my favorite parts of the whole park. I really like the seclusion and intricate, elegant effect achieved with just a few design elements such as the stone gate and the small water feature covered in water lettuce (Pistia stratiotes). Apart from this small space, I found the most interesting landscaping and plant material in the sections of the park immediately adjacent to the lake, including the small island which is home to the bamboo and cycad collections.

Landscaping featuring various palms and croton (Codiaeum variegatum)

View along the canal around the island, with a veritable forest of topiary trees along the left bank

View from the bridge towards the cycad collection

Flower of the water hyacinth (Eichhornia crassipes) - lovely but a horribly invasive weed throughout much of the tropics; these were growing in small, blocked-off bays at the edge of the lake, presumably so they cannot spread

View across a part of the lake; the shrubs flowering in white and light pink on the opposite bank are Mussaenda cultivars

Also at the edge of the lake is a plaza of sorts where colorful orchids take center stage alongside some interesting trees. Most of the orchids used represent hybrids of Vanda and similar genera but there were also some others.

Part of the orchid display at the edge of the plaza - I love how the colors pop against the green background even from afar

One of the island beds filled with orchids

A close-up of some of the orchids from the Vanda alliance

Another cultivar of Vanda or closely related parentage

I am not even sure what genus this terrestrial orchid belongs to but I really like the two-tone flowers
UPDATE: Thanks to ChrisU from 1003 Gardens I now know that this is a cultivar of Philippine Ground Orchid (Spathoglottis)

Unfortunately my camera ran out of battery power while I was in this part of the gardens so I was not able to take pictures of some other features, such as the Heliconia collection and a small spice garden, which I visited later on but on the whole those were quite lovely as well. The whole park definitely makes for a lush and tranquil place to stroll and while away an hour two but there is also plenty of color and much of botanical interest.


  1. Ah ha, there is still heaven on earth! Look how beautiful those gardens are.

  2. Wow again. What a great trip. Spathoglottis, Philippine ground orchid.


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