The botanic garden in Dunedin is impressive, like almost every other one in New Zealand. And of course, I focused on the greenhouses. Outdoor gardens are great, don’t get me wrong. There is just something different about greenhouses. They are like an oasis of green foreigners, protected from the outside world. I’m always surprised by what’s growing in a greenhouse. Even when it’s my own!

The first few photos are of Clianthus puniceus, the Kakabeak plant. I think there must be more individuals of this plant in gardens around here than there are wild ones! I have a few seeds of this one waiting for me at home, and it is allegedly a vigorous grower. Hopefully after a year or two I will have myself quite a collection of them.

Clianthus puniceus foliage.
Clianthus puniceus bloom. Striking, isn’t it?
NOID fuchsia.
Strelitzia reginae, the orange bird of paradise. 
Justicia brandegeeana, the red shrimp plant.
Hibiscus schizopetalus. Certainly looks funky!
Thunbergia mysorensis
This vine grows so well in greenhouses here, I’ll definitely have to test it out at home.
This is another NOID plant, but check out the leaves!
Tiny tubular yellow flowers… nearly undetectable amongst the massive leaves.
Colocasia for sure. Without a tag it’s tough to know for sure. There are so many varieties out there. I’d guess this one might be ‘Thai Giant’?
More coffee trees here too! Almost every greenhouse has one, it seems.
More Colocasia mixes…
Here’s another of this tree (scroll down a ways), that I still don’t know the name of.
Asplenium spp, with no nametag. Since A australasicum is native to eastern Australia, I’d venture that its probably that.
Towering over the Asplenium, Amorphophallus titanum is a force to be reckoned with. The titan arum at the New York Botanical Garden is currently blooming, and reportedly fills the greenhouse with a stench the likes of which I would not deal with. This greenhouse is much smaller, I’m sure, and would probably not see many visitors when this one blooms.
The stem on A titanum is big enough to be more like a trunk.
The canopy of this lily is higher than my head by significant distance. I would need a wide angle lens just to get it all in one shot!
On the other side of the size spectrum, this little epiphytic cactus (Epiphyllum spp) has tiny little white berries, which I’m sure taste just like a full sized dragonfruit. 
This looks like a ginger… possibly Costus barbatus.
Bananas! My favorite, of course.
Aristolochia gigantea, Giant Dutchman’s Pipevine. The leaves on this particular vine were pretty much dead and dry, but that enabled me to see the incredible vines themselves.
The bark on the vines looks like fins on a radiator. I wonder what purpose they serve?
Musa acuminata ‘Dwarf Cavendish’. If you’ve eaten a banana in the US, you’ve probably had this variety of banana. The fruit of the regular and dwarf plants are the same, but the dwarf variety is much more appropriate for the home greenhouse.

Almost all of the plant here are in a single room of the greenhouse. Granted, it’s a two story room, but the footprint (or rootprint?) is fairly small. Maybe if I work it right, I can fit nearly as many plants into a slightly smaller space? I can dream.

2 thoughts on “Dunedin Botanic Gardens

  1. The Fuchsia looks like just F, boliviana. The stripe-leaved tubey-flower is Sanchezia speciosa – I think it’s still occasionally offered in the states! I’ve wanted it for so long, as a sort of improved Aphelandra. As for the mystery tree… Perhaps a less-airy clone of Trevesia palmata?


    1. I’ve seen that Sanchezia in several places lately, it seems pretty popular over here. I hope I can find it back in the US! As for Trevesia… if it had spines, that would be close enough to convince me.


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