Monday, 8 September 2008

Which flower is this? (19)

This week's flower is a big, bright, bold tropical flower found all throughout the bush here in South Santo. It is grown around homes and is used for decoration at feasts and on other special occasions. Here is one growing outside Mama Mercy's house;

Here is a close up of a flower. The red petals are often used to make 'salu-salu's; the garland of flowers hung around someone's neck in welcome.


Now I want you to look even more closely:


Now here's the question. What actually is the flower? Is it the red bit or the white bit? The red bits seem like petals, but I'm wondering if they are actually modified leaves and the flower is the white bud growing out between these modified leaves. It is definitely flower shaped and has all the right parts (stigma, style etc., which you can't see in this photo). If that is so, the red part would be like a spike with lots of flowers growing on it, each with a red leaf at its base.

I'm interested in a name, if anyone knows...

2 comments:

amy perkins said...

Red ginger flower?

Rachael said...

Hi Amy!! I've googled red ginger flower and that's definitely it. Thanks!