Solandra longiflora seeds
Solandra longiflora occurs in Central and South America as well as in the Caribbean. The genus is called Solander to honor the Swedish Daniel Solander who first described those plants. It is also known as chalice vine but should not be confused with the more frequent occurring Solandra maxima that is sometimes also named chalice vine. Solandra longiflora is a climbing plant. It creeps easy on surrounding vegetation or objects. It reaches a height of about 4 m. At the basis Solandra longiflora lignifies. If it is regularly cut back it gets shrubbier. The leaves are longish elliptic to nearly roundish.
They are leathery and strongly glossy. In Europe Solandra longiflora is a popular ornamental plant. Its cup- shaped whitish to yellowish flowers can get up to 15 cm long and have a really pleasant odor especially in the night. The odor is often associated with coconut. The corolla leaves are turned back. As potential pollinators, bats are discussed. The fruit is a leathery berry. As Solandra longiflora belongs to the Solanaceae, the nightshades, it contains poisonous compounds in this case tropanalcaloids that are strongly poisonous in high doses. In lower doses tropanalcaloids can cause halluzinogenic effects. Due to that Solandra longiflora is part of magic rituals. The plant is worshiped by the natives because they think that Solandra longiflora is godlike. Therefore they say it is dangerous to offend the plant. If one nevertheless offends the plant one is cursed and may die. In rituals Solandra longiflora is mostly used for black magic. Consuming the plant in those rituals is not common. In medicine the natives use a tea made from the leaves to treat cough. Furthermore the tea shall have an aphrodisiac effect. It has to be recommended against eating the plant. Solandra longiflora should be placed outside children's reach.
The seeds of Solandra longiflora should soak 1 to 2 days in warm water before planting. After that germination occurs at a temperature between 23°C and 25°C after about 2 months in the moist substrate. Solandra longiflora can tolerate salty soils and is not winter hardy.
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