The Green Dragon Roars
I’m back from Thailand, jetlagged and overwhelmed by the thousands of photos I have yet to process. While I was away, one of my newest plants let loose with an incredible flower, so I thought I’d share.
I purchased this Green Dragon (aka Pinellia tripartita) from Flora Grubb just last month. It’s an Aroid, which means it’s in the Araceae family of plants, including some of my favorites like Philodendron and Alocasia, but I’d never tried a Pinellia before. I can tell already he won’t be my last.
Like other Aroids, Pinellia springs from an underground bulb, or rhizome. When I was transplanting this one, I noticed that the bottom of the pot was dense with baby bulbs, so I planted the main plant outdoors and some of the smaller bulbs in a pot inside. I wanted to see which did better. The answer, for now, is a tie. Both plants are thriving.
Last night, after watering all the plants in the living room, I kept smelling this sweet wet dirt smell. I thought I’d overwatered one of the plants (which happens more than I’d like to admit) and was smelling the water, but I couldn’t find it. Eventually I noticed the Green Dragon bloom, which was the source of the scent, sent to signal bugs to come fertilize it. Perhaps I’m part bug. The bloom is a spathe/spadix combo like other Aroids. But in this case the spathe has a long thin tongue, hence the “Green Dragon” name.
Ofttimes really unusual plants are unusual because they’re difficult to grow, but not in this case. So far, the Green Dragon is an easy, vigorous grower, with beautiful trilobed leaves, an almost neon green color, and supercool blooms. I’ll be on the lookout for more.