This is the 7th post in the Series of Picture Poster-Flowers.The following blog posts have been separated into pictures with flowers, bees, birds, insects and others. Each blog post will contain about six to eight pictures in each series; and there will be more than a blog post for each section.
The following illustrations have been resized from their originals to expedite quicker uploading for internet purposes. As such, there will be a drop in the picture or text quality.
The Cannonball Tree (Couroupita guianensis) at the Singapore Botanic Gardens was first planted in 1931 from seeds collected by Prof E J H Corner from tree specimen/s he found when he was in Colombo, Sri Lanka. The Cannonball Tree is a most beautiful and remarkable tree that has fascinated botanists with its curious form. Its flowers are bisexual, large, about 12cm across, fleshy, waxy and fragrant. There are 6 sepals, 6 petals which are yellow on the outside and pink on the inside and many stamens. The tissue of the flower when broken is white but turns blue. Picture taken at SBG on September 25th 2018.
Citrus hystrix. Commonly known as Kaffir lime, Limau purut, is a small tree with a spreading or sprawling growth habit.
Foliage: Dark green, smooth glossy leaves are oblong, but pinched in the middle so that 1 leaf looks like 2 ovate leaves fused together.
Fruits: The fruit is round to egg-shaped and often has a distinct nipple-like structure near the apex. It is light to dark green with a very wrinkled and bumpy texture, eventually turning yellow before dropping from the tree. The flesh contains little juice which is sour and slightly bitter. Both leaves and fruit are edible. The leaves add a lemon flavour to various types of dishes, such as Tom Yum soup. The rind can be added to curry, such as green curry paste. It is the food plant for caterpillars of the moths Attacus atlas (Atlas Moth). Picture taken at home in my garden.
Saraca thaipingensis. Common Names : Yellow Saraca, Talan, Bunga Asoka, Gapis Golak, Yellow Asoka, Gapis, Gapis Batan, Gapis Batang
Growth Form: Evergreen, medium, wide-spreading tree of between 7 to 20 m tall.
Crown: Coarse-looking, dome-umbrella shaped.
Trunk: Bark smooth and often blotched with lichens.
Foliage: Even-pinnate compound, with up to 8 pairs of large oblong leaflets. Young leaves purplish, maturing to cream-coloured with purplish-red leaf edge and rachis, then green. New growth usually appears after a dry spell.
Stems: Young pendulous flushes purplish-red, limp, and hanging in a tassel, before stiffening upon maturation. Flowers: Cauliflorous, bisexual, slightly fragrant (especially at night), petal-less, and colours of the flowers come from the sepals. As the flowers mature, a dark red eye develops. It flowers heavily after pronounced dry weather.
Fruits: Purplish large, flattened pods, swell upon maturation and splitting into 2 coiling halves when ready for disperse. Each seed is large, hard and black. Uses: The Malays recorded that the fruits has some medicinal properties. The roots are used to make handles of parangs.
Crepe Ginger is a tall and substantial-looking plant with large (15-30 cm long by 5-7 cm wide) dark-green leaves arranged on the stalk in a spiral. This species can grow to more than 3 m tall under ideal soil and climatic conditions.
The flower’s single petal (actually the male part of the flower) looks like crepe paper, hence the common name “Crepe Ginger”. This and other ginger species propagate most effectively by producing a large network of thick fleshy rhizomes that are similar in appearance to the “ginger root” sold in grocery stores and at farmer’s markets. A single rhizome will produce new shoots and grow into a clump more than one meter in diameter in less than two years. Traditionally, the rhizome has been used to treat fever, rash, asthma, bronchitis, and intestinal worms. In India and Southeast Asia, this species is still used to treat boils, constipation, diarrhoea, dizziness, headache, and vertigo (“seasickness”). This species is also a source of diosgenin, a compound used for the commercial production of clinically important steroids such as progesterone.
Taken in Singapore Botanic Gardens. Picture shows the seed pods after the petals have dropped off.
Heliconia is also known by a variety of common names including lobster-claws, wild plantains or false bird-of-paradise. The last name refers to their close similarity to the bird-of-paradise flowers, Strelitzia, which they are sometimes mistaken for. Most plants can grow to a height of between 2 feet and 25 feet. The flowering bracts usually come in bright colours including deep crimson, orange and yellow; and some species often resemble banana plants, which are related.
Costus productus var. productus.
Growth Form: Spiral ginger to 1m tall, pseudo stems growing upright initially but often sprawling thereafter
Foliage: Leaves mid green, hairy, to 15cm long by 5(6)cm side. Ligule of leaf sheaths light green, to 3.5cm long by 2cm wide, overlapping the bases of the succeeding leaf sheaths.
Flowers: Inflorescence to 15cm tall. Bracts bright red; flowers tubular to 5cm in length, bright yellow. Lip lobed, bright red with faint yellow markings.
Picture taken at the Singapore Botanic Gardens.
At the Singapore Botanic Gardens. This is one of my favourites from the batch. The Victoria cruziana
( Giant water lily). The flowers are white the first night they are open and become pink the second night. I like the Blue Sprite damselfly on the flower and it’s reflection in the water.
Darwin blood red frangipani. The rich crimson colour and unique shape of the blood red frangipani flowers is stunning.
Here’s an interesting fact: the beautiful fragrance is amplified when the flowers are picked.
Picture taken in my garden October 2nd 2018.