Joy of Urban Gardening

Quezon Memorial Circle, Quezon City -Philippines

group photo at the winning orchid exhibit booth

It was a clear day when the author organized a FREE tour among bloggers/ freelance media  , youth  and environment advocates within the Quezon Memorial Circle and a side trip to the 68th annual orchid and garden show.

We saw Miss Fe Magtoto and Ms. Andrea Agillon ( horticulturist and freelance writer / blogger) Andrea in this Lifetime:

After the brief stop-over at the orchid show , We were greeted by Mr. Vince ( Office of the Vice-Mayor Ms. Joy Belmonte) and we went for a short tour of the famed Quezon Heritage House

lettuce bed

The project was started several years ago and the aim of the urban gardening was to provide food for the ordinary people of the city.


Quezon City is said to have one of the highest rate of malnutrition in Metro Manila. According to one of the garden staff, They purchase most of their seed supplies from Allied Botanical Corporation


Contact : Ms. Dhorry Fadriquela ( 0922-815-0041)

Mr. Cholo Raymundo- Technical  ( 0922-816-3772)

pechay grown in plastic container

The urban garden is becoming a model for urban areas of Metro Manila. there are people from Manila, Caloocan, Pasay,  Makati who would come and visit the site for educational purposes and as a model to be adapted in their local community.

Ms. Pie Burwell

Before our group left the garden, we were given an opportunity to harvest some vegetables that were planted by the gardeners and some seed packets .  A short question and answer portion and our group were very happy to experience the JOY of URBAN Gardening !

Quezon City:

Note: We would like to ” Thank” Mr. Vince , Office of the Vice Mayor – Ms. Joy Belmonte , Philippine Orchid Society and Quezon Memorial Circle management for the warm hospitality extended to our small group.


World Trade Center, Buendia street -Pasay City, Metro Manila-Philippines

World Trade Center

It was a bit overcast sky when i visited the agriculture expo  .  World Trade Center is teeming with a lot of activities from Agriculture , Livestock, Fisheries, Ornamental Plants,  Poultry  and Supplies Expo or Agrilink Expo 2013 and Carinderia Expo at the nearby tent.

Agrilink 2013 opened yesterday with Senate agriculture committee chair  Senator Cynthia Villar, Agrilink 2013 chairman Mr. George Canapi of AMMDA, DA Secretary Proceso Alcala, South Africa Ambassador Agnes Nyamatilde-Pitsu and FRLD chairwoman Ms. Dulce Gozon. Photo courtesy of Agri-LINK 2013 Facebook page

 stage area

There is a mini-concert of some sorts, but due to weather conditions , There seems to be fewer people in attendance .

registration area


Visitors are greeted by several mascots of PIGROLAC

Department of Agriculture booth

Department of Agriculture booth is one of the biggest most massively displayed booth in the expo. The booth showcases the different types of edible landscape plants and vegetables like camote tops, pineapples, ti-plants , philodendron executed by a team of landscapers from the University of the Philippines – Los Baños, Laguna.

The booth proudly showcases the edible seeds varieties like corn, rice , vegetable seeds , peanut, coffee, cacao beans among others , products from different regions like wine made from tropical fruits, soaps among others.

fruit wines

different kinds of fruit wines like santol, lipote, guyabano, mango, duhat, bignay, ube, tamarind  among others. They are highly desirable by foreigners. Tropical wines  have unique taste compared to the usual wine from grapes.


i saw a lot of foreigners and even local trade buyers , trying the different kinds of tropical fruit wines. A group of French expatriates were even amazed with the different varieties of locally produced wines!

Harbest Seed Corporation

AIBIGAN HOTLINE  0922-8521843 Sun,  0917-8507888 Globe, SKYPE through internet – harbest_main2
Email addresses;;

Facebook Account: Harbest Agri Corp;    Harbest Agribusiness Corporation   

HARBEST MAIN OFFICE          TEL NO.     6717411-14         FAX NO.     671-2232


Allied Botanical Corporation booth

new eggplant varieties -seeds are for sale

ABC corporation released their green eggplant  ” wonder green”  to the market.

shaolin gourd

Lagenaria siceraria- This type of gourd or locally called  upo , It is a climbing vine that can reach a length of several meters . The fruit resembles the drinking suito made from these type of gourd. Highly popular in China, Japan, Korea , Taiwan .



Known You Seed -Philippines distributes different kinds of seeds , flowering annual and perennials . They also distributes different kind of  corn, cucumber, bitter gourd, watermelon and winter melon seed varieties .

Lisianthus Double Pure White

Lisianthus flowers are native from Southern United States, Mexico to Central and parts of South America. They are also called Texas bluebell, Prairie Gentian or Tulip Gentian.  Most of the hybrids in the market have different kinds of colors.

Their high quality yields makes them one of the newest company to watch out for.  They have a demonstrative farm in Barangay San Pedro Ili,  Alacala, Pangasinan .

For questions and inquiries,, Globe at 0917-320-1689, through Smart at 0999-885-9612, or through land-line at 075-632-1785.



Cherry Tomatoes

King Louis

The different types of poinsettias , orchids , bromeliads   signaled the start of the Christmas season .  The poinsettias are the biggest sellers of this period.

Dasoland farm booth

A refuge for the city-weary, Dasoland is an adventure park of 68 hectares located in Barangay San Vicente of Dasol (town).  The park and resort  is part of the Carolina Mango Farm, a 408-hectare mango plantation of 3,500 full grown mango trees. It was launched on March of 2011 as a tourist destination and venue for field trips, cultural and educational activities.


products made from bamboo form Carolina Bamboo Garden

Tel. Nos. (632) 847-0523 to 25 and Tel/Fax No. (632) 847-0522.

Facebook event page:

Agri-link 2011-Integration: Key to Sustainable Agriculture

This year Agri-Link 2011 was opened by Agriculture Secretary Proceso Alcala has extended his welcome to Mr. Willy Co as this year’s Agri-Link chairman, citing Co’s expertise in localized breeding for tropical vegetable seed and his numerous, successful field programs.

Hon Proceso Alcala, Mr. Willy Co ( Allied Botanical Corporation) and important VIP’s graced the opening ceremonies at the World Trade Center

Co-organizer for the event is Ms. Dulce Gozon of the National Onion Growers Cooperative Marketing Association.
In cooperation with LGUs, Co had partnered with Alcala, then congressman for Quezon, in the ‘Aral Saka,’ aimed at helping farmers improve their farming technologies and create their own produce, which have enabled the Quezon province to produce all types of vegetables.

Opening day speech introduction at the World Trade Center

These programs have since been replicated in farms like Isabela, Pangasinan, Cebu and even urban areas like Quezon City.

Entrance to the Agri-Link  2011  exhibition

Mr. Co is also a multi-term Philippine Seed Industry Association president and the first and only Filipino president of the Asia and Pacific Seed Association.

Allied Botanical Corporation exhibit booth at the World Trade Center, Pasay City

ABC has set up localized breeding programs for vegetable, fruit, herb and flower seeds along with hybrid rice. ABC’s 23-hectare research facility conducts breeding, screening, testing and distribution of different crop seed varieties that have high yield, resistance to diseases and pests as well as improved adaptability to specific geographical and tropical conditions. These inputs enhance the farm’s sustainability, improve their income and provide healthier food for consumers.

Alatone Plastic Company

Alatone Plastics, Inc.was founded in 1969; emerge as one of the first companies in the Philippine industry of manufacturing plastic products. Its production plant is located at # 7 Industry Rd. 1, Araneta University Village, Potrero, Malabon City. Its humble beginnings started by manufacturing only two items, pails and basins. At present, Alatone Plastics is engage in producing various sizes of commercial items ranging from utility cans, baskets, chairs, dish drainers and real heavy-duty crates for the industrial market. From its very humble beginnings, Alatone Plastics diversified and expanded its product line. Today, dealers and end users know Alatone Plastics for its durability and elegance, a trademark that made them sought after.


This year’s theme, “Integration: Key to Sustainable Agriculture,” emphasizes the significance of a holistic, integrative approach—from production system down to consumer households—towards a more efficient, productive, profitable and self-sufficient Philippine agriculture.

Allied Botanical Corporation is also a top seed wholesaler in the country

Foundation for Resource Lin-kage and Development (FRLD) president Antonio V. Roces ex-plains: “The integration of environment friendly yet effective farm and post-production technologies, government inputs, comprehensive marketing strategies, efficient networking systems and other support services will empower farmers and stakeholders of small and large agribusinesses to better adapt to the needs of the time.

B -Meg rooster mascot-

Daily lectures and technology transfer is the greatest linkages that this show had provided with multitude of people from all walks of life went to this show.

Sagrex Fertilizer Company

Sagrex Corporation
office and Warehouse in Davao City and Gen. Santos City. Sagrex Corporation (Sagrex) epitomizes the edge of innovation and its relevance in today’s world. Formerly known as “Southern Agro Export Corporation,” the company set out in 1980 to engage purely in the trading of agricultural products and inputs. In the span of three decades, Sagrex has evolved into a conglomerate of inter-linked operations that led to the current challenge it is now tackling – gearing up for the world food market.

Sagrex started out as a local trader of copra coffee beans and sugar. The company next ventured into the consolidation of volumes of castor seeds, cotton seeds and pineapple and banana degum fiber for exportation to Japan and Germany. After Eight (8) years, the company decided to venture into importation and distribution of NPK Soluble foliar fertilizers when it was awarded the Philippines exclusive distributor of GrowMore, Inc; a California based manufacturer of micro-nutrients.

Environment buttons on sale

Security Issue

There are reported incidence of theft in the retail section of the exhibit , one Filipino- Chinese businessman reportedly lost two cell phones, and an undetermined amount of cash and important documents such as ID’s and credit card. There was also another person who lost a laptop , while another trade exhibit guest also lost an undetermined amount of cash .

It is also important that the public must know that theft and pickpocket is not just confined in one area . according to one of the victim “The pickpockets, might be working in teams, apply distraction, such as bumping into the victim. These distractions sometimes require sleight of hand, speed, misdirection and other types of skills.

I hope that the organizers and WTC, Pasay City would seriously look into this matter!

Green Living with Orchids – 65th Mid-Year Orchid and Garden Show

Mrs. Amelita ” Ming ” Ramos , former Philippines First Lady ( 1992 to 1998) , an educator, sports enthusiast, badminton player , horticulture lover , orchidophile ,  and an honorary member of the Philippine Orchid Society was the guest of honor during the opening ceremony held last August 25, 2011

L-R Professor Serapion Metilla, Mr. Kelvin Manubay , Mrs. Amelita Ramos, Mr. Ponchit Enrile, Dr. Romeo Gutierrez

Philippine Orchid Society marked their 65th Mid-Year orchid and garden show with the theme” Green Living with Orchids”  , the theme was chosen in order to promote orchid growing as a good alternative for those people  with limited space , apartment- type and cramped living areas in order to combat global warming .

Mrs. Vangie Go together with Mr. Kelvin Manubay and Mrs. Amelita Ramos pose for a souvenir shot at Lambana Tropical showcase landscape exhibit done by Ms. Vangie Go

Mrs. Vangie Go’s vast celebrity clientele includes senators, congressmen, first ladies from different countries, dignitaries and even presidents .

2×3 showcase landscape exhibit booth – 2nd place in the category

Her exhibit won her second place in 2×3 square meter landscape category, Mrs. Go is a trend setter in Philippine horticulture, an antique collector, orchid collector, bird collector , an entrepreneur among others. Her worldwide fame led to international plant breeders to name her outstanding plant varieties and cultivars like Alocasia Vangie Go among others.

Mr. Neil Boyet Ganigan one of the proprietor of Arids and Aroids received the award from Mrs. Amelita Ramos for winning Best Vandaceous Orchid, Best Waling -waling and Best Orchid in Show.

Mr. Ganigan is a plant and orchid collector. His vast collection included some of the rarest plants from around the world.

Her lectures about Cattleya orchid  growing is jam-packed with crowd, Mrs. Go had a 1 hectare farm in Cavite where she grows her orchids and other rare exotic plants.

Mrs. Vangie Go, Atty. Apolonio B. Anota , Jr. (executive director and board of trustees -Nayong Pilipino Foundation ) and Mrs. Maria Victoria Jimenez

First place in the 2 x 3 square meter orchid showcase landscape exhibit

This showcase booth was exhibited by the husband and wife tandem of Mr. Manuel and Susan Lee, according to the happy winners , they spent approximately  Php 25,000 for this exhibit, which also includes bougainvillea bonsai, tillandsia , ferns, adobe  blocks , coconut choir dust and other fixtures.

Mrs. Susan Lee pose for a souvenir shot at her winning booth

Orchid growing needed only very small space compared to other plants.  In fact ,  hotels, schools, convention centers  , hospitals and even homes are already growing orchids indoors. Buying orchids with flowers is also a good alternative to cut-flowers and flower arrangements in which cases  most of the blooms wither within just a matter of few days, while having a live orchid flower display  can last for almost  three weeks to almost one month in an indoor condition. add to the benefit that these plants emit oxygen which is very vital to our daily lives.

3rd place 2×3 square meter orchid showcase by Mrs. Delia Pionela and Bong Pionela

This showcase 2x 3  sq. meter  exhibit booth was landscaped by Mr. Bong Pionela and Mrs. Delia Pionela of Quezon province. The showcase exhibit booth won 3rd place. old window panels,white pebbles, dendrobium hybrids , bromeliads , anthuriums and ornamental plants complement each other .

Mr. Reinald A. del Valle -Market Development Executive of Allied Botanical Corporation

The lectures conducted by Allied Botanical Corporation during the show is a crowd drawer, The company is known for their fertilizer , potting media and seed products. Their slogan “Kaagapay ng mga Magsasaka” , shows the company commitment in  being partners  with the farmers by sharing technologies and trainings to their clientele  .

2nd place winner in  ornamental landscape exhibit executed by VS orchids ( Mark Spowart)

Unlike in the previous orchid shows, There is a special 2 x 3 square meter category orchid showcase  landscape competition . This is in order to encourage backyard and small- time orchid growers to compete .

3rd place winner in ornamental plant exhibit executed by : Constel Garden

While the 4 x 8 square meter regular landscape exhibit normally is allotted to  the big time farm owners . Sometimes this discourages small time hobbyists to compete and even participate in local orchid shows. The last time POS had this special 2×3 square meter landscape exhibit was in 1999 held at the EDSA Shangri-La Mall in Mandaluyong City.

4×5 square meter landscape exhibit done by Malvarosa Orchid Farm ( First Place)

Times are quite hard and compared several years ago where orchid growing is a fad not only among the rich but also among the ordinary people.

an array of tillandsias , bromeliads and ferns

Now a days if a person live in a small apartment or condo that barely has any free space, or none at all.  Having a small orchid showcase or a flower showcase is not a bad idea !

Mr. Noel Vincent Canicula pose with Mrs. Amelita Ramos

Mr. Noel Vincent Canicula , a member of the Philippine Orchid Society and a board member of Philippine Horticultural Society  is also a landscaper , restauranteur , entrepreneur and a plant collector.

Mr. Carl Balita together with Ms. Joy Belmonte ( Quezon City -Vice Mayor) tapped a television segment , the tandem had a regular television show at Studio 23

How to start a pocket  and indoor garden

Just because your place is small you don’t have to steer clear of your local florist or give away every bouquet or plant you receive. All you have to do is to utilize your space smarter.

Get rid of the clutter. Keep your home free of anything that isn’t needed or wanted, or put it away in storage. That way, there will always be space for a bouquet or plant.

Orchids and Plants Arrangement indoor:

The author would recommend to buy flowering potted orchids and plants whenever there is a  special event maybe  party , important guest or anniversary around the house ,  It is also advisable to use gentler light from lamps is better for smaller condos and apartments. Take advantage of natural light as well by keeping windows free and unblocked. Choose a focal area maybe within the living room or near a good source of natural light , let us say near the windows ,  that you can start having a small pocket garden.

Mirrors can really open up a space. It can also make flower arrangements look bigger (especially if the flowers are placed in a corner where two mirrors meet), making more of an impact. Some may use different live orchid species , some may use the same orchid genus . It totally depends on the creativity of a person .

And if you want to make your place look bigger, avoid bold colors and stark contrasts. You want to stick to paler colors (cream and beige are good) with little contrast. That way, there’s no dramatic start and end – everything just flows gently into each other creating the appearance of a larger space.

Plus choose a ceramic container  to put all those live flowering orchids , It is okey to trim down a few coconut husk and roots in in order to have a nice display of the live orchid display  plus do not forget to put moss in order to retain  the moisture . Humidity is indoor is  lower compared to outdoors .

Manila Bulletin booth – one of the media partners of the event

Here are the Set of Winners:

Best in 2x 3 square meter- Showcase Landscape exhibit:
First Place: Mr. Manuel and Mrs. Susan Lee
Second Place: Mrs. Vangie Go ( Lambana Tropical)
Third Place: Mr. Bong and Delia Pionela ( Quezon province)

Best in 4×8 square meter- Orchid Landscape exhibit
First Place: Malvarosa Orchids by Atty. Hernando B. Perez
Second Place: Mr. Carlos Valeriano Lazaro, Mrs. Mable Chua, Mrs. Linda Lim, Boyet Ganigan
Third Place: Mrs. Cora Purificacion and Mrs. Ana Purificacion- Conde

Best in 4x 8 square meter-Ornamental Landscape exhibit
First Place: Metts Plant Art by Professor Serapion Metilla
Second Place: VS Orchids and Ornamental by Mr.Mark Spowart
Third Place: Constel Nature Garden By Mr. Constacio Basis

Best Monopodial Orchid : Trichoglottis brachiata of Purificacion Orchids
Best Sympodial Orchid and Best Foreign Species : Epidendrum floribundum of Vangie Go
Best Philippine Species : Aerides lawrenceae of Vangie Go.

Best Vanda sanderiana: Vanda sanderiana ” immaculata ” of Mr. Neil Ganigan (Arid’s and Aroid )
Best Vandaceous alliance and Best in Show : Mr. Neil Ganigan

Best Cattleya : Bc. Mt. Hood Delco Point of Malvarosa Orchids by Atty. Hernando B. Perez

Best Dendrobium: Den. UH 800 x 306 x KB White of VS Orchids and Ornamental

Best Oncidium: Onc. leucochilum of Purificacion Orchids
Best Phalaenopsis: Phal. Sogo Yukidian ‘ V3’ of Purificacion Orchids
Best Cultured Plant: Den. UH 800 x 306 x KB White of VS Orchids and Ornamental Plant

AGRI-Link 2010 Expo

Last October 7 to 9, 2010, The World Trade Center hosted one of the Philippines biggest Agriculture Show. Envision as AGRI-LINK 2010 expo . the show aimed to bridge the buyers and the sellers of various Agriculture products, services , machinery , live stocks , industry practitioners , academe and technology transfer  .

Entrance to the retail area

There are many interesting ideas, products and technologies that will certainly be of great interest to lot of show goers. At the outdoor exhibit area, for instance, there will be a lot of plants aside from the farm animals. Guest of honors include Department of Agriculture Secretary Proceso Alcala .

King Louis Ornamental Plants and Cut Flower landscape exhibit booth

If you are interested in plants, you will see them in the booths of the Friends of AANI. There are, for instance, the many different bamboo varieties from Mrs. Carolina Gozon Jimenez who has developed a bamboo plantation in Antipolo City. She has about the biggest collection of bamboo varieties hereabouts.

If you are looking for planting materials of superior exotic fruit trees, you will also find them in the outdoor area. These include superior varieties of pummelo like Magallanes, two varieties from Vietnam as well as from Thailand. There will be stocks of grafted Longkong lanzones (the superior variety from Thailand), imported varieties of mango like Golden Queen from Taiwan, Peach mango from Australia, different varieties from Thailand and Florida (USA).

There will be rare fruit trees like the variegated orange that produces sweet and juicy fruits, sweet kamias seedlings, imported makopa varieties, sweet sampalok and many others.

Watermelon and Papaya fruits exhibited by Mr. Toto Barcelona of Harbest Corporation

One of the interesting exhibits will be the farm-ready seedlings from East-West Seed Company which include Sinta and Red Lady papaya, seedlings of tomato, eggplant, different varieties of sweet and hot peppers, bitter gourd  and others.

Quality fruits and vegetables harvest by Allied Botanical Corporation

Allied Botanical Corporation or just simply ABC booth is a consistent top-crowd drawer during the expo. Their sweet melons , high quality seeds of vegetables  , fruits and flowering annuals including their fertilizers earned them the nickname ” Ang Pambansang Fertilizer ” , ” Quality Seed Company ” , ” Kaagapay ng mga Magsasaka” , ” Forefront in Seed Technology“, ” Best Quality that a grower can find” among others.

Their demonstration farm in Pangasinan is a beehive of activities and their company is very proud to have sponsored several students from leading Philippine Colleges and Universities through their  scholarship projects.

Allied Botanical Corporation -Sales and Marketing Team

The company  also send a team of capable and experience oriented  resource speakers in various agriculture , horticultural shows all over the country.

Their never ending support earned their company as one of the leading pioneers in the seed, fertilizer and technology transfer in agriculture industry.

Agri-products from different parts of the country

There are over 300 exhibitor booths selling different kinds of agriculture products.

A panel of experts will also be available for ready consultation by trade show goers beside the booth of AANI. Dr. Rey Itchon  gave a lecture on free-range chickens.

French Pavilion exhibit at the Agri-Link expo 2010

Belmont Agriculture Corporation a French based company  which has been in the forefront of the industry for over 35 years. Belmont marketing manager Tony Magno said they will be displaying their modern tunnel ventilation system which uses fiberglass cone fans installed at one end of the house and large openings at the opposite end. The improved air quality removes excess heat, moisture, dusts, odors and harmful gases like carbon dioxide and ammonia, providing the birds with more free oxygen.

Belmont’s tunnel ventilation system lowers the temperature in the poultry house through evaporative cooling. The decrease in humidity helps keep the animals comfortable so they can eat more and grow faster. The birds are more healthy and will require less medication.

pot bellied piglets for sale

Magno said they customize each tunnel ventilation system, depending on the environment of the farm. He added that Belmont’s tunnel ventilation system lessens land area requirements, providing higher bird stock density by at least 35 percent more. One satisfied user of Belmont’s tunnel ventilation system is San Miguel Foods, Inc. which became more profitable after adopting the system.

James Yap wearing B-MEG T-shirt together with some eager fans

San Miguel Basketball and Pure foods Basketball Team were also within the WTC grounds as part of the company support to the event.

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