Exploring the science of plants, from the field to the lab

Amherstia nobilis

A Spectacular Tropical Tree

Posted in Location Shots from the Field on November 13, 2013 by Scott Mori

Scott A. Mori is the Nathaniel Lord Britton Curator of Botany at The New York Botanical Garden. An expert on the Brazil nut family of trees, he has also investigated the co-evolution of plants and the insects and animals that pollinate and disperse them.

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Among the most spectacular of tropical cultivated trees is the Pride of Burma (Amherstia nobilis), a tree in the legume family that is known from only a few localities in the wilds of Myanmar (formerly Burma) but commonly cultivated in tropical botanical gardens throughout the world.

The tree is stunning because of its long, pendulous clusters of flowers, or inflorescences, and its crimson-colored petals painted bright yellow at their tips. These images were taken at the Botanical Garden in Rio de Janeiro, where I recently presented a week-long course on tropical botany.