Rainforest Riches

Head for heights

  • Built in 1967
  • Desired temperature: 18 - 24ºC
  • Relative humidity: 80%

The carp of the Rainforest Riches PondThe plants in this house come from the moist forests of tropical America. A range of exotic climbers, many of which have extraordinary flowers, festoons the walls and railings that overlook the pool brimming with carp.

The vegetation here is dominated by the versatile pineapple family (Bromeliaceae). Some members of this group provide herbaceous ground-covering on the forest The pineapple of Ananas fritzmuellerifloor, while others are epiphytes, growing on the upper branches of other plants. The 'trees' used for this purpose are actually metal frames covered with bark cladding!

The pools of water collected in the rosettes of the bromeliads provide a tree-top home for the resident tree frogs which can be heard singing in the early morning.

You will also find some epiphytic Cactaceae — Rhipsalis and Epiphyllum from South America are very different to their prickly cousins in Arid Lands.

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Red pompom flowers of Calliandra haematocephala

Red pompom flowers of Calliandra haematocephala.

The Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh is a charity (registration number SC007983)