There's always something to marvel about around our lush landscape. Learn more of our blooming highlights in the Gardens!
Feature date: 17 Jul 2019
No, this isn't a long-lost relative of Twoey from 'Little Shop of Horrors!' Cheekily known as 'hot lips,' the bright scarlet opposing bracts of Palicourea tomentosa hide small, yellow-green flowers that emerge from between the 'lips,' and if fertilized, develop into bright blue fruits!
This spindly coffee relative (Rubiaceae family) is a short shrub less than 2 m tall and native to the Central and South American rainforests. Look for these hot lips in the Secret Garden of Cloud Forest, under the bridge opposite the miniature orchid display!
While you're searching for the colourful Poison Dart Frogs, do admire our equally striking begonia collection, several of which are in flower! These begonia species are found in different parts of Southeast Asia, often in isolated populations on wet, rocky places, such as on cliffs near waterfalls. Many plant enthusiasts collect begonias for their interesting foliage; their flowers can be a much rarer sight albeit less colourful.
Most flowering plants bear perfect flowers with both male and female parts, but begonias have unisexual flowers that are either male or female. Male flowers have two to four tepals (similar-looking petals and sepals), while female flowers can be recognized by the winged ovary behind their three to six tepals. These flowers are usually white or pale pink with some species sporting red flowers, such as the Darth Vader Begonia (Begonia darthvaderiana). Can you tell which ones are spotting male flowers?
Spot these rare begonia species in the Poison Dart Frog Vivarium at Floral Fantasy today!
Members of the orchid genus Miltoniopsis are commonly known as ‘pansy orchids,’ as their wide, round flowers and boldly patterned lip petal create a striking resemblance to pansy flowers (Viola tricolor var. hortensis). This is Miltoniopsis Playgirl ‘Cha-cha’, a selection of the hybrid of Miltoniopsis Seine x Miltoniopsis Memoria Ida Seigel. Not only are its clusters of magenta and yellow-patterned white flowers a visual delight, they are also fragrant, with a kaffir lime and lemongrass scent reminiscent of Thai Tom Yam soup! These blooms are expected to last for weeks, so head down to the Scentsational Orchid display in Cloud Forest conservatory and smell them for yourself!
The Empress of Brazil is flowering at Cloud Forest for just the third time since being planted in 2016! An amaryllis relative and the only species of its monotypic genus, Worsleya procera is native to eastern Brazil, growing on steep granite cliffs where it is exposed to intense wind, rain, and sun. Cultivating this plant can be really tough, as it requires specific growing conditions to thrive and flower. Held above the equally-stunning, recurved leaves, the large flowers are brushed and freckled in deepening shades of lilac-blue toward their frilled edges. Step on the Cloud Walk to spot this rare beauty high on the mountainside near the end of the walkway above a profusion of anthuriums!
If you like piña coladas...well, this is the tree for you! Commonly known as Scented Daphne, Phaleria clerodendron is a small tree native to the tropical forests of Queensland in northeastern Australia.
The clusters of fragrant, white tubular flowers bloom directly on the trunk and branches, scenting the air with perfume reminiscent of pineapple or piña coladas. The bright red, glossy, egg-shaped fruits look alluring, but may be toxic. Native Australian birds, such as cassowaries, are known to feed on the fruits. Mainly cultivated as ornamental tree in Singapore, we have planted them extensively in our Fruits and Flowers and Understorey gardens, where they are blooming en masse!
Is there a delicious monster hiding among your houseplants? Native to Peru and Mexico, the Swiss cheese plant's huge, lobed, perforated adult leaves are now an iconic depiction of tropical foliage, decorating everything from pillowcases to plates! But few have seen it flower and fewer still sampled its delectable pineapple-banana-flavoured fruit, which its botanical name Monstera deliciosa ('delicious monster') and alternate common name, fruit salad plant, allude to!
Here are three rarely-seen stages of Monstera reproduction, all on the same plant at Supertree Grove! First, a pale-green immature inflorescence (foreground), matures into full bloom with a petal-like ivory spathe and columnar spadix, bearing multiple minute flowers (left), and eventually develops into a scaly fruit (right). Eating an unripe fruit will cause severe mouth and throat irritation, so wait till the green scales peel off before sampling the sweet flesh inside!
A close relative of mangosteen, Garcinia xanthochymus is native to tropical Asia, from India through Indochina. A small to medium-sized tree up to 15 meters tall, it is characterised by a pyramidal crown, large, glossy, oblong leaves, and yellow-orange, pointy-tipped fruits. Also known as 'sour mangosteen', the tart fruit pulp is made into jams or pickles and used like tamarind or lemon juice to add a sour tang to dishes. The species epithet xanthochymus means 'yellow sap', a trait common to several Garcinia species. Their resin yields a bright yellow pigment called 'gamboge', from the Latin name for Cambodia, where most gamboge was produced. Look out for this tree at the Meadow Carpark!
Feature date: 22 May 2019
Did you know that orchids can be scented too? Prosthechea fragrans, a scented orchid found in Colombia, Peru, and Ecuador, can be found in low montane forests. It is a warm to cool growing epiphyte which can thrive in an altitude of up to 2000 meters. Although its flowers are not as colourful as other orchids, it gives off a nice, and delicate scent. Do come and take a whiff of the different types of scented orchids at our latest orchid display in Cloud Forest- Scentsational Orchids! There are many different types of scented orchids showcased and you'll be surprised at what you'll get to smell there!