Friday, July 17, 2009


On the eighth day of our Ecuadorian adventure Eduardo took us over to the Botanical Gardens of Quito. This had been suggested to us by the Botany teacher at the University while we conversed on the subject of perfume and the Amazon.

The Jardin Botanico de Quito offers a stunning display of plants encompassing all the varied eco-systems of Ecuador as well as plants from other parts of the globe. A very informed and patient guide took us around the large 18,600 meter area including three greenhouses. The main attraction is the "orchidarium" of approximately 1,500 square meters. Ecuador contains more than 3,500 orchid species and is growing steadily. The highlight for me was seeing a very special vine, one of the most ancient members of the flowering family of orchid plants, Vanilla.

Pictured above is the Vanilla Orchid, below is a plant that, judging by the visual aspect, appears to be connected with film maker Tim Burton.

Here are some photos from the Medicinal Herb and Native Food Gardens.

Mint above and Artemisia below,

Amaranth, below

Tomato Tree Fruit, below

and the Lantern plant in the two photos below.

Although Roses are not native to America they grow extremely well in Ecuador
and have become one of the major commodities.

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