What's In Bloom In February

February is the heart of winter when snow and cold keep us indoors. Why not experience the tropical rainforests of the world by visiting the Roger Williams Park Botanical Center this month.

Pass through the entrance gate and turn right. Several trees along the path have interesting bark. Bark is the skin of a tree. It may be different colors or textures. Attempts to peel the bark, or in the case of the cherry, rubbing off the lenticels, can permanently damage the trees. 

Keeping with the interesting bark theme, as you enter Greenhouse 1 stay to the right and walk to the center near the entrance to the hallway. Nearby is an interesting palm tree. What does it look like? Continuing in Greenhouse 1 you will see a few Red Leaf Chinese Evergreens as groundcovers in some beds. These are easy to grow small houseplants. On the right side as you first enter Greenhouse 1 you see two giant White Bird of Paradise clumps. They will bloom for at least another month or more.

The small island bed in Greenhouse 2 has a Tree Philodendron with big eyes! The thick roots, called aerial roots, coming from the trunk, are seeking the soil to anchor the heavy vine-like stem. Proceed further into Greenhouse 3 and turn right, you will see a stone bench. Right behind it you’ll see a beautiful yellow and brown Cymbidium Orchid blooming. 

This stroll through the gardens and greenhouses has just taken you across the continents from Cuba and South America, the Indian subcontinent, and various parts of Asia.