|Swallowtail puddling to sip
An astonishing number of flowers sparkle from the sides of a dirt road here is southern Ecuador. Bromeliads, gesneriads, palms and heliconias along with birds and butterflies.
A huge orange flower of a liana called Guarnia dangled from its stem. Inside hairy orange bracts are tubular yellow corollas, making the whole cluster stand out among the foliage. Called a jungle cucumber, the flowers are pollinated by heliconias butterflies.
|Fuchsia and butterfly|
Charming yellow-green bell-shaped flowers of an Iochroma shyly nod toward earth. Tubular flowers on Cavendeshia are red -- signaling to hummingbirds as does a red Kohleria, with kissing anthers characteristic of gesneriads. A butterfly with orange bars that matches a bold fuchsia favored us with a visit.
Long, tear-drop-shaped woven nests of the yellow and black oropendulas are engineered to hang below tree canopies, allowing bird-safe ingress and egress.
Mauritius flexulosa, the achu palm, has enormous clusters of edible seeds beneath its palmate fronds, and is one of the most useful palms in the country.