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A touch of the tropics in a boreal garden

June 20, 2011

Today we visited Nynäs castle in the Södermanland province of Sweden. It is a well maintained estate absolutely worth a visit. Among the local and classical garden species, there were heat-lovers such as Mediterranean olive, lemon and fig. Such plants have to be kept indoors at wintertime, avoiding freezing temperatures. The Swedish interest in such plants began in the 18th century, and such an orangery had to be heated, a very costly hobby at the time. We even saw tropical Lantana in big pots, which also have to stay indoors during wintertime. An Amorphophallus had emerged from a pot, and the owner proudly explained that this exotic was not for sale. When he learnt it grows all over Chiang Mai like a weed, he remarked in surprise: “Have you left Thailand, to go on vacation – in Sweden!?”

Ketsanee Seehamongkol

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