Friday, October 10, 2008

The Blue Family

Blue Friday. Stock market indexes drop like stone, Singapore's economy in recession and closer to home, retrenchment looms.

Head for the garden ....

While blue colouration in flowers is a relatively rare occurence in the natural world, the plant family Commelinaceae is credited with producing a good many species with varying hues and intensities of blue flowers, like the blue ginger (Dichorisandra thyrsiflora), Trandescantias and the common weed Commelina communis, which has a most intensely blue bloom.

Perhaps commercial breeders seekinng for the blue rose should take a closer look at this family. Right now, it appears they are spicing genes from pansies, and the result is not exactly blue, ha !

While visiting my friend's massive garden, I spied upon this Cochliostema jacobianum, a giant in this family of mostly smallish plants. This is an epiphyte from the New World that grows like a Bromeliad, trapping nutrients between its stacked leaves. The flowers are more purplish though, but cluster is comparatively big. The whole plant is about 3 feet in diameter and in the wild, it can be so heavy it frequently caused the branches on which it sits to snap and tumble to the forest floor. Fortunately, it seems equally adapted to terrestrial life.


Hermes said...

Now that is a beautiful blue. Who wants a blue rose anyway.

Hort Log said...

I often wonder that myself.

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