The two new additions to the Creator Expert subtheme have suffered a similar fate to several recent releases, showing up at retail before the LEGO Group has had chance to properly unveil them. Both 10309 Succulents and 10311 Orchid have been available for a couple of weeks at sporadic locations around the US, and the latter set even showed up through an online retailer yesterday.
Pre-orders for both sets are due to go live today at LEGO.com, and may even be up as you read this, though availability could vary depending on where you are in the world. Either way, you’ll definitely be able to get your hands on them from May 1, when they launch proper in LEGO Stores, online and at select retailers.
Each of the new Botanical Collection sets takes a radically different approach to buildable florae: 10309 Succulents spans nine individual plants, each with its own modular container, which can be connected and arranged in formation or displayed separately. 10311 Orchid, meanwhile, pours its 608 pieces into one towering plant.
“They say having succulents in a room helps you focus, and we hope [10309 Succulents] gives the same feeling,” said Anderson Ward Grubb, Senior Designer at the LEGO Group. “We wanted to create a set that offers a relaxing and mindful building experience to help adults switch off from their busy lives, and to most importantly refocus on something they enjoy.”
Following in the footsteps (or stems, perhaps) of 10289 Bird of Paradise, 10311 Orchid includes a large buildable pot at its base, forming much of the set’s construction process – the conception of which proved pretty tricky for its designer, Michael Psiaki.
“The design of this set was inspired by a real orchid we had in the office throughout the design process, so we could see how the flower changed through the seasons,” Michael explained. “A challenge with this set was creating a cylindrical pot from LEGO elements that would be fun to build but also beautiful to look at.”
The Botanical Collection now spans five different sets, including 10280 Flower Bouquet, 10281 Bonsai Tree, 10289 Bird of Paradise, 10309 Succulents and 10311 Orchid. Look out for our reviews of the two new sets in the very near future, and click here to check out all five sets arranged together, in one sprawling display of buildable nature.