Los Angeles Times

Rare plants in south China botanical garden


The South China Botanical Garden in Guangdong Province, with the world's largest greenhouse complex housing about 3,500 plant species, provides visitors with chance to see rare plants from all over the world.

The greenhouse is divided into several sections including tropical rainforest section, rare plant section, and desert plant section.

With all the abundant plant resources, the botanical garden in the provincial capital Guangzhou holds different plant exhibition­s regularly for the public.

Giant waterlily is one of the rare species in the botanical garden. With two meters in diameter, its large green leaves that lie flat on the water's surface can support a weight up to 30 kilograms.

Calabash tree, a species that is grown in Africa and Central America, can also be seen in the greenhouse complex.

"The calabash cannot be eaten. It is currently mainly used for ornamental purposes. It can be used to make handicraft when it is ripe," said Zou Lijuan, engineer at the South China Botanical Garden.

In addition to its rare plant species, the botanical garden has a gene pool with many quality seeds.

"We preserve the seeds of excellent and rare species. We might find some species not that important today, but one or two decades later, we might find their special genes useful for improving human's health," said Xu Daping, director of the Research Institute of Tropical Forestry under the Chinese Academy of Forestry.

 ?? ??

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from United States