Category A1 International Horticultural Exhibition
23/04/1993 - 17/10/1993
City and Nature - Responsible Approach
IGA Stuttgart 93 – V Internationale Gartenbauausstellung
IGA 1993 Stuttgart was the fourth BIE Horticultural Expo to take place in Germany, recognised by the General Assembly on 12 December 1989. Opened on 23 April 1993 by Federal President Richard von Weizsäcker, the Expo drew 7.3 million visitors during its six-month run.
The Expo site was located close to the north east of the city centre, and its development was a core part of the “Green-U” project to connect several of Stuttgart’s existing parks in a continuous belt. The area covered the northern rim of the Stuttgart valley basin, including Killesberg Park, Wartberg, Leibfriedsche Garden, and Rosenstein Park. This planning strategy chimed with the chosen theme of the Expo, “City and Nature – Responsible Approach.”
As the site encompassed existing parks with differing terrain and characteristics, visitors could appreciate a great deal of variation between the many gardens, which were well-connected by the circular Panoramic Railway. In line with the theme, the Expo’s gardens and exhibits reflected interdependence between humankind and plants in different environments.
The Expo’s indoor flower shows took part in the Stuttgarter Messe and the Kongressgesellschaft, covering a total exhibition area of 105,000m2. Organised by theme and by species, over 643 exhibitors contributed to these shows, which included categories such as bonsai trees, hydro-culture, and flowers for balconies and terraces.
Horticultural practices, cultures and technologies from Germany and further afield could be explored in a range of exhibits and activities throughout the site, including the “Green University” presentation, which offered regular tours and demonstrations on specific topics and themes. Additionally, the 500m2 Württermberg Gardening Association greenhouse provided visitors with information about modern cultivation methods, and demonstrated vegetable-growing in the outside area surrounding it. This area also featured “Flori”, the 6-metre flower- owl sculpture made from spring and summer flowers that served as IGA 1993’s mascot and most popular photo-opportunity.
In Rosenstein Park, 22 countries showcased their national gardens, which varied in style from traditional to modern, and which could be viewed from a 170-metre-long wooden suspension bridge connecting the park to the rest of the Expo site. Among the highlights were a sea of tulips spilling out of a shipping container in the Netherlands’ garden, an Ancient Egypt-inspired garden with palm trees, India’s geometrical garden, and Ukraine’s country house, a replica of where Gogol lived.
The Expo featured a lively cultural programme, including national week events organised by participating countries. A Chinese fireworks display on 18 August drew the biggest crowd of the whole event, with 300,000 visitors gathering to watch the impressive spectacle.
After the closing of the Expo, the national gardens were dismantled in order to return Rosenstein Park to its original state, but some of the most popular exhibits – including Iran and Ukraine’s gardens – were relocated elsewhere in Stuttgart. Overall, IGA 1993 succeeded in completing Stuttgart’s “Green-U” project, contributing to making it one of Europe’s greenest cities.