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Selenicereus megalanthus, better known as ‘Dragon Fruit’ – or ‘Pitahaya’ in Ecuador.

“And I think of the night-blooming cereus, a plant that looks like a leathery weed most of the year.

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But for one night each summer its flower opens to reveal silky white petals, which encircle yellow lacelike threads,

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and another whole flower like a tiny sea anemone within the outer flower.

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By morning, the flower has shriveled. One night of the year, as delicate and fleeting as a life in the universe.” —Alan Lightman – The Accidental Universe: The World You Thought You Knew

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Mindo Ecuador –  Dec. 01, 2016  (Rabbit-rabbit!)

Yesterday morning my friend Clemencia emailed to say, “We are having some flowering in the pitahaya, if you would like to come tonight… if you want to invite Cynthia, please do; she wanted to see the flowers too. It is not a big flowering, but the nights have been beautiful so even with a few it will be nice.”

Those ‘few’ flowers were more than I could photograph!   Cynthia was unable to join us, but these photos confirm that I cherished every second of last night’s noctural experience!   The crickets and frogs provided a subtle soundtrack, and the fireflies twinkled from ground level to the tree tops.

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The flowers’ lemony and subtle aroma reminded me of Magnolia Grandiflora, a comforting and nostalgic comfort to my senses.   These flowers seemed to be as large as those magnolias, yet they looked like an outerspace mix of many flowers, from peonies to Louisiana ‘Swamp Lily’ to  waterlilies.  I was tempted to walk every row to be the personal inspector of flowers until their cycles ended with the sunrise!

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I told Clemencia that if I lived on the grounds, I’d probaby be up every night – all night, just inspecting, admiring and drinking in the magical flowering experience!

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Clemencia graciously invited me to return the next night (tonight) and also said it was OK to bring friends.

If this set of buds open on the same night, they are going to be stunning!

If this set of buds opens at the same time, they are going to be stunning!

Is anyone reading this in close enough range to attend?!!!  If so, leave a comment – or email tzeebra at yahoo dot com – and we’ll see if we can make this happen!

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To learn more about this unique place, start here: Mindo Golden Brow

 

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