Rare Plant Blooming in Tropical Greenhouse

© Western New Mexico University

The campus community is invited to stop by the tropical greenhouse this week to view an endangered species of plant in bloom. Strongylodon macrobotrys, or jade vine, which is indigenous to the Philippines, has unusual turquoise blossoms. This is the first time the university’s specimen has ever bloomed, said WNMU Horticulture Coordinator Chala Werber.

According to Werber, the university nearly lost the plant several years ago, when water to the greenhouse was cut off while she was on vacation. Nearly 70% of the jade vine died back at that point, she said, but it has since recovered and grown. The plant is rarely seen in North America, with most specimens held by botanical gardens.

The tropical greenhouse will be open Monday, February 26 and Wednesday, February 28, 1-4 PM.

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