Saturday, August 09, 2014

Queen of The Night - The Flower That Rules!

 This is not the most attractive plant to be showcasing in your garden.  
The leaves are not very pretty.
It is this strange bud that eventually unfolds to become a spectacular flower...in the middle of the night.
My Dad has been looking after this plant for several years.  It belongs in a tropical climate, but he is growing it in the middle of Toronto, Canada.
We've been anxiously waiting for the flowers.
Here are the first three I photographed on August 7, 2014.
I knew they were big, but I could not believe how spectacular they truly are, when you see them in person.  We have witnessed that the flower only blooms the one time.  These three closed by dawn and now appear to be finished.
This is the blossom now.  It really is a "one night only" flower.
I am not the least bit knowledgeable about gardening.  My Dad however, has a green thumb.  So, I depended on Facebook friends and online research to learn more about this unusual night time blooming plant.  
"Night-blooming cereus is the common name referring to a large number of flowering cereus cacti that bloom at night. The flowers are short lived, and some of these species, such as Selenicereus grandiflorus, bloom only once a year, for a single night."

Here is my Dad.  He has already grown a second plant with a cutting he took and planted in the spring.  August 8, 2014.
Last night the Queen truly gave is a show!  More than a dozen flowers opened!
 We were so excited!

"While some night-blooming cereus are grown indoors in homes or greenhouses in colder climates, most of these plants are too large or ungainly for this treatment, and are only found outdoors in tropical areas."
This is a wonder.
We still have a lot of unopened flower.
These night time viewing will continue!

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