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MADEIRE.4 – JARDIM BOTÂNICO, the essential
The two essential parks of Funchal are undoubtedly the Botanical Garden, but also and above all the Monte Tropical Garden.
Source : Geoportail.lneg.pt
Today we take you to the Botanical Gardens and soar high, with breathtaking views of the ocean. It is one of the very appreciable facets of the city, wherever we are, the panoramic views open generously.
Jardim Botânico da Madeira
Created at the end of the 18th century on the initiative of João Francisco de Oliveira under the guidance of Dr. Domingos Vandelli, director of the Lisbon Botanical Garden, the garden is conducive to the observation and acclimatization of tropical and subtropical plants. It represents a perfect complement to continental gardens which welcome plants adapted to temperate climates.
From the entrance, the colonial house welcomes us from its side. It protects the collections of the Natural History Museum founded by father and naturalist Ernest Schmitz at the end of the 19th century.
In particular, you can see this fragment of a fossilized heather trunk.
It dominates the park which is articulated in various levels arranged in the abrupt slope.
We meander in the shade of the trees and we discover the paired pebble paths. Here, the white and black marbles have given way to pyroclastite, a rock mainly derived from volcanic materials.
We tumble from time to time on terraces, always in the shade,
where the water sometimes invites itself, calm, encumbered with slow greenery.
From there, the projections towards the ocean are numerous.
One of the most famous terraces is that of the Choreographed Gardens. The colored carpet is made up of a mosaic of beef plant (Iresina herbsii), a perennial plant with particularly colorful foliage of red, pink, purple, green, bronze or even yellow. With us, it behaves as an annual.
There are tropical plants such as dragon trees and yuccas.
Dracaena draco ssp. Draco
And also cacti in large varieties.
Our favorites of the moment - August 2021
In Madeira, orchids are varied and plentiful, here are two examples:
This spider orchid comes from Central and South America. It perfectly aligns its many flowers on its flexible, arching stems and presents its graceful ballerinas, if one pays enough attention to it.
Rather than stretching, this one organizes its flowers into dense and generous pompoms. You have to take advantage of it, because it only lasts a few days. Arrived from Tanzania, it likes the shade where it evaporates its discreet perfume.
Cordylines are also numerous and are pleased to be there. This is an opportunity to observe its red and shiny fruits.
The Mickey Mouse tree gets its name from its distinctive fruits, which are regularly flanked by two to several shiny black berries. The flowers are first yellow-gold and later turn red. The fruits appear olive green. The colorful appeal of this small tree lasts all season long.
The squinty eyes of Ochna serrulata
Golden wonder is a perennial plant with spikes of black buds that burst into golden yellow. The leaves have a peanut smell.
The Glory lily, one of the rare climbing bulbs, offers its attractive flower, all in bright, flamboyant pink. Of South African origin, the petals are exhibited in so many sparks that stand out from the dull and shaded foliage. Contemplation reaches its blossoming when one can observe all the stages of the development of its flower bud. A delight.
The delicate pompoms and scent of Callisia fragrans.
The Botanical Garden is cultural and also presents the picturesque houses of Santana, characterized by their triangular shape whose roof descends to the ground in a single movement. They are found in the southeast of the island in the municipality of the same name.
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Texts : GiiN redaction WEB 2023
Photos : Bénédicte and Laurent - Jardins du Florilège 2021-2022