Category: Places Page 1 of 5

The oddest plant combination ever?

During my short years I have came across some unusual plant combinations. Benmore Botanic Gardens has Araucaria araucana (Monkey Puzzle) with native Calluna vulgaris (Heather). National Trust Scotland…

Unlocking the power of poo

A short video by Dr Linda Neaves about the challenges of finding giant panda poo in the mountains of China, and how poo samples can unlock the mystery…

New ginger east of Wallace’s Line

The genus Zingiber is distributed from India to the Pacific but only a few species are known from east of Wallace’s Line, where we discovered this new species…

Sense and Perception in Plant Scenery of the World

The eye exists in a primitive state. The marvels of the earth a hundred feet high, the marvels of the sea a hundred feet deep, have for their…

Bryological visitors at the Gardens

On Thursday the 28th September, we welcomed Professors Takayuki Kohchi and Ryuichi Nishihama, from Kyoto University, Japan, to the Botanics. Professor Kohchi’s lab is renowned for their evolutionary…

Ravenea glauca

Threatened plants of the world Red List status: VULNERABLE You may have already encountered this rare palm on your last holiday to a warm and sunny destination. You…

Arbutus canariensis

Threatened plants of the world Red List status: VULNERABLE The orange/red fruits of this tree, and its close relatives, have given rise to the name strawberry tree. There,…

Rhododendron taxifolium

Threatened plants of the world Red List status: NOT LISTED Even if you know your rhododendrons I bet you’d never guess this was one. The thin leaves are…

Dracaena cinnabari

Threatened plants of the world Red List status: VULNERABLE Imagine yourself standing on a tropical island surrounded by a turquoise sea. The sun is high and its searing…

Hatiora gaertneri

Threatened plants of the world Red List status: VULNERABLE Does this little plant look familiar to you? Perhaps you have seen it on granny’s windowsill or in a…

Thyrsopteris elegans

Threatened plants of the world Red List status: NOT LISTED Doesn’t the base of this fern look like a furry animal! Try to resist the temptation to stroke…

Hibiscus clayi

Threatened plants of the world Red List status: CRITICALLY ENDANGERED Ah, the Hawaiian Islands. Volcanic islands with steeple-like mountains clothed in rich green vegetation ringed with beautiful beaches,…

Lodoicea maldivica

Threatened plants of the world Red List status: ENDANGERED Far off the coast of east Africa the Seychelles are tiny specks of green in the vast Indian Ocean….

Encephalartos lebomboensis

Threatened plants of the world Red List status: ENDANGERED Take a look at the odd plant with a scaly trunk and a crown full of stiff fronds. Is…

Ficus benghalensis

1. Ficus benghalensis L. MORACEAE Banyan, बनयान The banyan, a species of wild fig, is one of the most iconic of all Indian trees. Its characteristic appearance as a mature…

Dimocarpus longan

2. Dimocarpus longan Loureiro SAPINDACEAE Longyen, longan; Bengali: ashphal, आशफल A small tree related to the lychee and native of South and South-East Asia. It is cultivated for its…

Leea guineensis

3. Leea guineensis G. Don VITACEAE The name of this genus commemorates James Lee, a Scottish nurseryman, who, with Lewis Kennedy, owned one of the most important of the…

Stephania glandulifera

4. Stephania glandulifera Miers MENISPERMACEAE An extensive climber, which grows from a large tuberous root; it is ‘dioecious’ (having male and female flowers borne on separate plants). This species…

Nesocodon mauritianus

Threatened plants of the world Red List status: VULNERABLE Take yourself to the island of Mauritius located far off the coast of Madagascar in the Indian Ocean. Now…

Alpinia zerumbet

5. Alpinia zerumbet (Persoon) B.L. Burtt & R.M. Smith ZINGIBERACEAE Shell ginger It is not certain where this plant was originally native, but somewhere in tropical South or South-East…