Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Queen of the Night

Talk about a one night show! This week our ancient Orchid Cactus, aka Hylocereus undatus, went into bloom. It's really a cactus and not related to an orchid. This plant stretches up over a 2 story high cape honeysuckle that the cactus uses for support.
The blooms develop for about 2 weeks and are 8+" long and 6" wide when open.
The flowers bloom only at night and into the morning hours, then die away (I took these photos at 8am when they were already closing)...it's a very spectacular sight in the night and with a fragrance that is pervasive yet you can't really describe.
It was unusual this year that most of the blooms went in one night, like a wall of gigantic flowers. It makes a beautiful display, if only for a few hours. It's one of my favorites in the garden, top 5; and to me the most spectacular plant and flower in the garden. Had to share it...

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