Thursday, 17 February 2005

Meconopsis punicea - Photos In The Wild

Gongen La. Martin Walsh. Gongen La. Martin Walsh.
Very large flower at Miyalou, Zhegu Shan, Sichuan. Colour is normally very uniform (at least in cultivation) but variation has been reported in the wild. Harry Jans. Wonderful packaging of a very large flower in a small bud. Wolong, Sichuan 4110m. Harry Jans.
Flower designed to shed rain but difficult for a pollinating insect. In the garden without hand pollinating they often do not set seed. Maybe they have a specialized pollinating insect in the wild. Wolong. Harry Jans. Wolong, Sichuan, 4110m. Harry Jans.
Lovely habitat shot, re-inforcing the image of prayer flags in the wind. Miyalou, Zhegu Shan, Sichuan. 4050m. Harry Jans. Huanglong, Sichuan. 3950m. Hybrids occur in the garden between M. integrifolia and M. quintuplinervia (M. x Finlayorum) but they have not been recorded between M. integrifolia and M. punicea although - as here - they occur commonly together. The webmaster has many times failed to make the cross in the garden. Harry Jans.

Another image of a very large flower taken by Harry Jans. Until recently nearly all of this species in cultivation were descendants of Peter Cox's collection many years ago and all these flowered - as did subsequent generations - with relatively uniform flowers of a smaller size. Recent collections show this species to be more variable and maybe even perennial in some locations. These variations should be looked for in the wild. I still dream of a white one!