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 Rare orchid stanhopea blooms at Treborth Botanic Garden

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Mr007



Posts : 108
Join date : 2011-02-03

PostSubject: Rare orchid stanhopea blooms at Treborth Botanic Garden   Tue Nov 15, 2011 6:06 pm


Stanhopea The stanhopea usually flowers every other year during the summer
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A rare orchid has flowered unexpectedly amid unseasonably warm November temperatures, giving botanic garden visitors a chocolate scented treat.

Nigel Brown, curator of the Treborth in Gwynedd, said the stanhopea was unusual both in the wild and when cultivated.

Botanic garden staff think the very sunny autumn may have triggered the unexpected bloom.

The plant usually flowers every other year during the summer.

The garden recorded the highest temperature for November in north Wales in 25 years on Sunday when the thermometer hit 18.2C (64.7F)

At Treborth - which is on land bought by Bangor University in the 1960s - the plant has six-inch long leaves coming out of a "green ribbed potato-like" bulb which stores water similar to a cactus.

The flower then dangles below the whole plant and each flower is a couple of inches across.

Mr Brown believes there is a link between the unusual November weather and its appearance.

"There's a connection because it responds not just to temperature but to more light and it has been quite a sunny autumn," he said.
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“Start Quote

It responds not just to temperature but to more light and it has been quite a sunny autumn”

End Quote Nigel Brown Treborth Botanic Garden

"As it is inside we supplement the heat anyway but on a sunny day the temperature does go up above this."

The plant will only be in flower for four to five days and has a "very powerful" smell.

"I find it like chocolate, slightly mint, and it carries throughout the building."

BBC Wales weather presenter Sue Charles said the average temperature for November across Wales is normally between 9 - 11C (48 - 52F), so conditions have been unseasonably mild.

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