Brussels Flower Carpet Blossoms on Iconic Grand Place

August 27, 2018 Updated: August 27, 2018

Belgian flower growers bested the summer’s blistering heat to lay out 500,000 blossoms on the central square of Brussels on Aug. 16, in this year’s edition of the world-famous flower carpet.

As Europe endured one of its hottest summers on record, organizers said they had worried the heat would kill off the flowers but cooler weather offered the event a last-minute reprieve.

“Above all [we had to] give them a lot of water,” said volunteer Johan Krick. “In June and July we had to water them from the morning to the evening, that was the only way of keeping our flowers pretty.”

Organizers were once again able to arrange a 19,375-square-foot 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.

The flower carpet dates back to 1971, when Brussels council members 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.