Blooms resembling a chalice are opening on the vigorous growth of Solandra grandiflora covering the railing of the elevated walkway in the temperate house.
Planted in the border at ground level this liana from tropical South America and the West Indes will rapidly cover any support. Naturally reaching 30 metres it romps up into forest trees using the strength of the trees branch framework as support.
The flowers are exceptional, in form, colour and scent but short lived. The buds etiolate, swell like puffed up nostrils and burst open. Five anther pads are covered in ash brown pollen which sheds onto the cream yellow, striated brown, inner corolla. To experience the headiest scent visit during the late evening or night when the chalice shaped corolla amplifies the scent. The pistil protrudes out with the edge of the fused corolla. This, the longest lasting part of the flower, remains as a wand held between the sepals.
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