|The Soutomaior Botanic Park
was recognized as International Camellia Garden of Excellence at the 2012 ICS
Congress, held in Chuxiong (China), on February 9th. This
candidature was approved unanimously by all directors of the ICS.
ceremony was held at the Soutomaior Botanic Park to commemorate the recognition
of this garden as an International Garden of Excellence. This event was
held on March 24th and was chaired by the President of the ICS,
Patricia Short and the President of the Pontevedra provincial government Rafael
Louzán. A commemorative plaque was placed in one of the most beautiful
spots of the garden, the Marchioness Fountain. During this event a camellia was
planted next to the castle's main gate. This plant was obtained from a cutting
of the 19th century camellia tree that was growing in the same place
until 2009, when it died.
During her speech Patricia Short complimented
the Diputación de Pontevedra for the magnificent job done on the garden
improvement: "you have accepted our challenge: you have turned a good camellia
garden into a great camellia garden" and encouraged them to enhance the garden
over this decade. The Estación Fitopatolóxica do Areeiro has
greatly contributed to this designation, since they carried out the
maintenance, enlargement and conservation of the collection of the more than
440 camellia plants distributed in the park area.