Riga’s Ball of Flowers: A gathering of horticulture and floriculture professionals and enthusiasts

The Puķu Balle or Ball of Flowers is an annual summer event organized by the Latvian University Botanical Garden in collaboration with the Botanical Garden Friends Society. It aims to gather horticulturists and floriculturists in a venue which showcases their skills and creativity. Together with Couchsurfers, I went to the University of Latvia (Latvijas Universitāte) to witness this wonderful initiative and learn a little bit more about plants and the Latvian culture.

Riga Central Station
Riga Central Station
Getting amazed @ the Ball of Flowers
Getting amazed @ the Ball of Flowers

The Ball of Flowers is not just all about displays of flowering plants. It also consists of cultural events like concerts and competitions, art exhibitions and installations, landscape architecture, workshops, activities for children and flower markets.

Latvians in their colorful national costumes
Latvians in their colorful national costumes
A well-decorated stage in the middle of the garden
A well-decorated stage in the middle of the garden
Cultural presentations
Cultural presentations

Founded 1922, the Botanical Garden of the University of Latvia houses around 6000 species of plants. It offers guided tours, seedlings and indoor plants for purchase, and venues for events. It is situated Pardaugava, across the river, and is only 10 minutes away from the city center. Read more about the garden here: Latvian University Botanical Garden.

Big, big roses!
Big, big roses!
Flowering plants
Flowering plants
Garden Landscape
Garden Landscape
Botanical Garden
Botanical Garden
Art installation and exhibit
Art installation and exhibit
I'm walking on sunshine!
I’m walking on sunshine!
Art installation
Art installation – Hanging mirrors
Performing artists
Performing artists
Art installation - metal balls
Art installation – metal balls
Art installation - Paper art
Art installation – Paper art

I really had an amazing summer in Riga, Latvia! Aside from Couchsurfers, I spent some time in Riga with a Slovakian in her 50’s. Let’s call her Anna. Met her at the breakfast table in the hotel, went with her to the Flower Show, walked with her across the Old Town, and had dinner with her in an Armenian restaurant. She had lots of stories to tell, both blissful and painful ones. Life is good. 🙂 True enough, the heavens sent us people to teach us lessons or give us a hint on what to do.  Anna left me a wonderful message: “You’re young. Look around. Don’t rush.” I’m so glad that I didn’t settle with what I had at that time, because the future is definitely better! ❤

Riga is undoubtedly worth the visit! The locals are nice and generally, friendly. I met some strange ones, too, like Mikael, a streetguy I sat on the bus with going back to Riga airport. And oh, that man who randomly asked for my passport and travel documents in the airport. Too much for looking “exotic”.  😀 Oh well, looking forward to visiting the rest of the Baltics! Cheers!

Me with Anna
Me with Anna
Going back to the airport. It's time to go home.
Going back to the airport. It’s time to go home.
Art installation, Botanical Garden
Art installation, Botanical Garden

 

 

 

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13 thoughts on “Riga’s Ball of Flowers: A gathering of horticulture and floriculture professionals and enthusiasts

  1. I love those hanging mirrors and metal ball exhibits. So out of place and so interesting. Yea looking exotic is a plus on some days and a complication other days right? Can’t wait to see more of you trip around the Baltics. I like your style, looks like you really enjoy the places you visit.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. It’s just a haven for people who are green thumb or botanists or florists. It just is so relaxing to just stare and look at the flowers. My mom would surely love going there as she is a green thumb. She’d so love to be here. Srsly.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. The Hanging Mirrors and Paper Art looks something you might see in Alice in Wonderland sets! I just love it! Also, I’ve never seen roses as big as my hand so WOW! This Ball of Flowers Festival looks to be a perfect way to see into the culture of Lativa! 😀

    Liked by 1 person

  4. How wonderful! I wish I can experience that gathering too and also be surrounded with beautiful flowers. I’m glad that you enjoyed your time in Riga. Plus, the host for your couchsurfing is nice. Looking forward to your other trips.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Never heard of this before but it sounds like a lot of fun! I love gardens and flowers and i know i would’ve enjoyed this! Would love to go one day hehe. Take meeee 😜😜😜

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Oh, I will show your article to my brother in law! He just loves botanical gardens and always wants to visit. Up until last year, I had never visited a botanical garden. But then my boyfriend and I went on holiday together with his brother and girlfriend. And then we visited some botanical gardens. It was really awesome. That’s often so much to see. I love it that there’s an annual event in this botanical garden. Totally worth a visit.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. The tone of your post and the accompanying photos all showed that you had a great time. Being surrounded by beautiful flowers liven ones soul and spirit. And those cultural perfomances are added attractions and truly made the celebration extra fun.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. I’d love to attend a similar event in the future. It’s my dream to have a garden full of flowers, herbs and edible plants. Well, mainly I’m interested in urban container gardening.

    Even though this is only a glimpse of Riga, I’m given the impression that this is really a wonderful place with lots of friendly people. I hope to see more of this place. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  9. It has been a wonderful experience for you at Riga. I like that you were able to assimilate with people there and it only made your experience all much the better. I think there is a good chance you may want to visit Latvia again in the next decade, perhaps bring a loved one to share your fond memories?

    Liked by 1 person

  10. When I was a little young, my dream job is to be a florist. I just love to be surrounded by flowers and I want to learn how to arrange them in such a beautiful way. Now that I’m teaching, horticulture has already been introduced in junior years now and I hope it was offered when I was studying years ago.

    Liked by 1 person

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