September 9, 2013
I’ll high-five anyone who can put together a centerpiece bouquet with flowers that are only 0.1 millimeters wide. And yes, they’re that small. The flowers of Wolffia globosa, aka Asian watermeal, are now on “display” in Japan’s Tsukuba Botanical Garden—but you’ll need a microscope to make out these world record miniatures.
Making the task of appreciating them more difficult is the fact that the flowers have no petals, which certainly makes Wolffia sound like a plantsman’s plant. Said curator Norio Tanaka, “I was deeply moved as I had been looking forward to seeing the flower in bloom for so long.”Tanaka plans to use this bloom period to observe how the plant is pollinated and the seeds are formed, a prospect that makes my eyeglass prescription hurt. Click through for more. —MN
(Photo by The Asahi Shimbun)

I’ll high-five anyone who can put together a centerpiece bouquet with flowers that are only 0.1 millimeters wide. And yes, they’re that small. The flowers of Wolffia globosa, aka Asian watermeal, are now on “display” in Japan’s Tsukuba Botanical Garden—but you’ll need a microscope to make out these world record miniatures.

Making the task of appreciating them more difficult is the fact that the flowers have no petals, which certainly makes Wolffia sound like a plantsman’s plant. Said curator Norio Tanaka, “I was deeply moved as I had been looking forward to seeing the flower in bloom for so long.”

Tanaka plans to use this bloom period to observe how the plant is pollinated and the seeds are formed, a prospect that makes my eyeglass prescription hurt. Click through for more. —MN

(Photo by The Asahi Shimbun)

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