Paliavana prasinata

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  • Photographer: Leslie Brothers
  • Grown by: Smithsonian Institution greenhouses

Images copyright by the individual photographers or their institutions.

Paliavana is a small genus of shrubby plants from Brazil. It is separated from the closely related genus Sinningia by the absence of tubers, and from Vanhouttea by the large green or violet flowers. They can be encouraged to bloom at a relatively smaller size by keeping them potbound.

Paliavana prasinata is one of the few bat pollinated Gesneriad species, all of which are native to the Americas. Bat pollinated species are characteristically green or muddy yellow, sometimes with maroon or brown markings. The flower opening is typically large, and substantial quantities of nectar are often produced. P. prasinata is large and shrubby, and the flowers are attractive.

Additional photos can be seen in a slideshow by clicking one of the links below.

Other members of this genus have similarly waxy flowers; in the case of P. tenuiflora they are a beautiful lavender shade.