August 16, 2018 / 2:54 PM / 4 months ago

Despite summer heat, Brussels' flower carpet emblazons city center

BRUSSELS (Reuters) - Belgian flower growers bested the summer’s blistering heat to lay out 500,000 blossoms on the central square of Brussels, in this year’s edition of the world famous flower carpet.

As Europe endured one of its hottest summers on record, organizers worried that the heat would prevent the flowers from blooming.

“It has been extremely difficult. Until 10 days ago, people were afraid that we were not going to have enough flowers. Luckily, in the last two weeks the weather changed, producing new, fresh flowers,” said Troch Peters, a Belgium-based flower wholesaler.

Despite the concerns, organizers once again arranged an 1,800 square-meter flower carpet on the city’s landmark Renaissance town square, which this year drew inspiration from the Mexican region of Guanajuato.

In the carpet’s design a bird, commonly found in indigenous Mexican embroidery, is surrounded by illustrations of Mexican fauna and flora.

“It is absolutely beautiful! I have been coming here since I was a little girl. Every time I see it, I am even more and more taken aback at the detail,” said visitor Judith Daniels from Los Angeles.

The flower carpet dates back to 1971, when Brussels councillors were impressed by similar arrangements in the neighboring Flanders province and decided to bring it to the city. Since then, the carpet has been laid out every other year, attracting tens of thousands of visitors.

Reporting by Julia Echikson; Additional reporting by Christopher Stern and Christian Levaux; Editing by Hugh Lawson

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