Sunday, February 14, 2010

Three Tropical Trees

Three Tropical Trees

Pride of Burma
Amherstia nobilis
(am-HER-stee-uh) (NO-bil-iss)
Synonym: Queen of the Flowering Trees
Click Here for a Larger Version

For this weeks edition of Today’s Flowers here is probably the most rare plant that I knowingly saw in Hawaii. This tree is considered rare and is endangered in its native area of Burma. It grows to 40 feet tall but this specimen was about 20 feet. The amount of flowers, plants and exotic foliage we saw in Hawaii this time was amazing and seeing this tree on the last day was icing on the cake.

This structure was near the Amherstia and was not remarkable by itself even though it had some nice lines. What was remarkable was the fact that when I started to take this picture I noticed a slight vibration and a few seconds later the whole thing started to creak. At first I thought it may be the wind but it was dead calm out. When I got a peculiar feeling in my knees I realized it was a small earthquake. Since this was very near the volcano it was slightly unnerving but after a couple of minutes I was back to bushwhacking the garden looking for more rare tropicals. That was the second earthquake we felt while on the Big Island.

Yellow Poui
Tabebuia serratifolia
Synonym: Yellow Lapacho
Click Here for a Larger Version

This next tree was growing on Maui. It was taken at the Enchanting Floral Gardens in Kula. I had visited the gardens in 2001 and didn’t remember what a vast collection of interesting plants they had so it was kind of like exploring it for the first time. Since it was only a few minutes from my sister’s house I was the only person in the gardens. There was only one other visitor the whole time I was there and that made the visit a little extra special. Of all the gardens we saw in Hawaii this one most reminded of something you would see at someone’s house.

Yellow Poui is native to South America where it can attain huge proportions (up to 160 feet tall and 8 feet wide at the base). It is a commercially viable species for timber farming and the bark has medicinal properties. It was glorious to see against the sunny Maui sky although getting that first shot required standing on my tippy toes to bend the flower down to where its picture could be taken.

Double Buttercup Tree
Cochlospermum vitifolium
Synonyms: Forest Peach, Mountain Cotton, Cotton-tree, Bombax vitifolium
Click Here for a Larger Version

This is the smallest growing tree presented here only obtaining a height of 20-25 feet. The flowers were gorgeous, simultaneously reminding me of a floribunda rose and a Begonia. The flowers were held quite a bit off the ground and that is why I was shooting up at them. The buds were beautiful too. A little further research revealed that the foliage is star shaped and often appears after the flowers (there wasn’t a leaf out on this one). Its native range is Mexico to Northern South America but has been used as an ornamental plant all over the tropics.

For more flower pictures from around the world check out:
Today’s Flowers .


This Is My Blog - fishing guy said...

DFP: What a neat flower show today, thanks so much for sharing. My flower post is up now.

eileeninmd said...

Beautiful blooms and flowers! I just love the yellow blooms aganst the pretty blue sky. Great shot!

SandyCarlson said...

These are really extraordinary. I especially like the light on that double buttercup blossom. Such rich colors.

Unknown said...

Hmm... I think that a small earthquake would be a little more than slightly unnerving! But I suppose that the beauty all around you would be a nice distraction... :)

Judy said...

The Double Buttercup Tree is beautiful! Oh, how I wish I could grow one here in Illinois....
As always, fabulous pictures....thank you for sharing and providing your readers with some 'sunshine' during these long winter months!

Carletta said...

Beautiful yellow against the sky!
I too think the light in the last one is very nice.

Thanks for your visit! :)

Digital Flower Pictures said...

That Double Buttercup was a beautiful sight.


There wasn't much you could do about the earthquake so I went back to enjoying the beautiful day. It was one of those travel brochure type of days.

Beautiful Nature Wallpapers said...

This Is Beautiful Wallpapers Blog You can See More Beautiful Nature Wallpapers.... Please Visit Our