TAIPEI (Taiwan News) – Taiwan’s landscaping industry is urging authorities to relax restrictions on vegetation for public works, arguing too many restrictions have stifled the use of Taiwan’s indigenous plants in public spaces, United Daily News reported on Wednesday (July 24).
The UDN report said the landscaping industry believes Taiwan is rich in indigenous plants, with more than 5,000 species, which deserve greater exposure in the country’s public spaces. Golden shower trees and Madagascar almond trees, for example, are both naturalized alien plant species.
Landscape architect Wu Shu-yuan (吳書原) said advanced countries emphasize public works with indigenous plants and vegetation. Taiwan government departments, on the other hand, often veto plant choices not listed in construction manuals for fear of being accused of helping nurseries profit.
The Design and Technique Specifications for Greenery of Site, forwarded by the Construction and Planning Agency, lists just 397 plant species, while another manual for public works published by Taiwan Construction Research Institute lists just over 1,000 species, Wu said.
He said the manuals should encourage designers to use more indigenous plants.