Sunday, February 10, 2008

Cannon-ball Tree

Planted in the gardens, in 1978, this botanical curiosity never fails to draw comments from visiors.

The Caonnon-ball tree comes from the Amazon basin, and has large orchid -liine flowers which are especially fragrant at night. The cannon-ball-like fruits take 8-9 months to mature. When mature, the fruits are about the size and weight of a bowling ball, and occur together with teh flowers on the trunnk of the tree.

Amazonian Indians brew a beverage from the foul-smelling fruits. The flowers of the Cannon-ball tree have been adopted by the Buddist monks for use in religious ceremoniies, and are found in and around shrines and temples in Sri Lanka.


Jana said...

WOW That is one interesting plant. I learn something new everyday!

Gwyn said...

It's amazing that the flowers are so fragrant yet the fruit are foul smelling. I'm curious, do you know why the flower is more fragrant at night?