Over the long weekend we somehow made five or six trips back to Prince Edward to the Flower Market, a buzzing couple of blocks near East Mongkok railway station where stores sell succulents and orchids, street vendors hawk bonsai trees and large, well-appointed shops line the main roads with all manner of pots and palm trees. The footpaths here are always crowded with plants and browsers. As we explored more and got to know the area better though, we discovered some more surprises.
The first was the huge disparity in prices. Similar plants could be on sale for as little as ten or twenty Hong Kong dollars and five times that in other places, or even more compared to stores on Hong Kong island! It is one place where it definitely pays to shop around.
In a little alleyway running through the flower and plant stalls we found a shop selling African chameleons, clambering around the aquarium tanks with wildly swivelling eyes, and then Hay Fever, a glamorous downstairs-plant-shop upstairs-cafe, seemingly modelled after something you would imagine in Aoyama or Jiyugaoka. On the main road was a restored 1920s apartment block, its high-ceilinged lower level spaces now converted into a zen-inspired vegetarian eatery. And tucked away in a corner, overlooking the action through plate glass windows in another old apartment block was the “House of Moments” teahouse, this time reminiscent of Taipei, where we ate tofu-cheesecake.