Blooms and roots

Monday, February 27, 2012

This flower is fabulous.

The Brownea coccinea ssp. capitella growing next to the Hawkes Lab walkway, has been spectacular this year. Mary Collins, senior horticulturist, said it displayed seven flowers last week. This morning, four flowers and a bud were impressing visitors. There is a helpful sign next to the plant explaining that it is hummingbird pollinated and that its new leaves emerge to resemble a limp handkerchief, giving it the nickname “handkerchief tree.”

Meanwhile, growing next to the Brownea is a Guiana chestnut,

These roots have
emerged from the
trunk of  Pachira.

Pachira aquatica, that is sending out adventitious roots along its trunk. Some of them resemble stubby little fingers that might be poking through the bark to get a feel for the place. The Pachira, from tropical America, is surrounded by rainforest plants, so perhaps it is throwing out roots to capitalize on the moist environment.

Follow the tram trail from the Cycad Circle back to the new construction, and you will find the trees on your left.