Tropical rainforests are a world of their own. They cover 2% of the earth’s surface and are known as the ‘world’s largest pharmacy’ as more than a third of medicines have been discovered there.
They are incredibly biologically diverse, with the Amazon rainforest containing 427 species of mammals and 2.5 million different insects.
However, what we are interested in is the 40,000 different plant species, and that is just in the Amazon rainforest.
This article is going to list some flowers that can be found in a tropical rainforest.
Heliconia, Heliconia Latispatha
The heliconia flower is also known as the ‘Lobster Claw’. This is because the flower has a very unique claw shape and is bright red in color.
This plant acts like food for many birds and insects, and hummingbirds will use it as a nest, which in turn will pollinate the flower.
They are a very common and colorful jungle plant and can be found in treetop canopies.
You can grow Heliconias from seeds, but they may take quite a few months to germinate as their seeds are tough.
Passionflower, Passiflora Edulis
Passionflowers are known as one of the most beautiful-looking flowers in the jungle.
They grow tall and their white and purple colors make them stand out against the greenery that surrounds them.
This flower is often compared to the orchid.
Some species of this plant will produce the well-known passion fruit that is wonderfully edible and very popular in Amazonian cuisine.
Due to its tropical origins, if you want to grow them yourself they are unlikely to survive the winter.
However, if you grow them on a trellis and mulch them deeply, only the tops will die but you’ll have a new passion flower emerging in spring.
These plants grow from the ground in the Amazon Rainforest and their flowers also produce fruit, like the passionflower.
The fruit they produce is the pineapple, which should give you a good idea of their appearance. They produce flowers of various colors that are sword-like in shape.
These leaves are made to hold up to 7 liters of water, acting as the plant’s very own water tank.
Monkey Brush Vines, Combretum Rotundifolium
The Monkey Brush is a vine that attaches itself to other trees and plants and grows best like that. When it blossoms, the flower of this vine looks like a bright red/ yellow bush.
Iguanas tend to enjoy resting among these vines, so if you ever spot a Monkey Brush, Iguanas are likely to be lurking.
Orchids are known as one of the most beautiful and exquisite flowers in the world. There are over 25,000 species of orchids, making them the largest plant family.
Their flowers grow in all sorts of colors and they love humid environments.
If you want to grow your own orchids at home, then the closer you can them to living in humid conditions, the more they will bloom.
They also need a lot of light, but not direct late-afternoon sunlight.
Torch Ginger, Etlingera Elatior
If there’s a flower that looks seriously exotic, it’s the torch ginger. Emerging from a cone, these flowers bloom into red and pink petals.
They are striking on the eye and are often used in Malaysian cuisines for extra spice.
They have black seeds and deep green leaves, and they can grow up to 20 feet tall!
Poinsettia, Euphorbia Pulcherrima
You may recognize this flower as the ‘Christmas Flower’. These are plants that people tend to have around their homes during Christmas.
They earned their name because their flowers bloom in December, the Christmas season. Believe it or not, these are actually found in the Amazon Rainforest.
Their flowers are in the form of yellow stalks that are surrounded by red leaves.
If you are wanting to grow these yourself so you’ve got a lovely supply for Christmas time they are not difficult to grow. They need a bright light that is indirect and must be watered once the surface of their soil has dried.
Like all tropical plants, the Poinsettia needs humidity so be sure to mist it regularly.
Pitcher Plants, Nepenthes
Pitcher plants earned their name because they have a pitcher-like appearance as their foliage. What this does is it attracts insect prey as inside the pitcher contains a sugary liquid.
This smell attracts these victims and will make their way inside the pitcher.
Once they have entered, the victim can’t escape and it will be consumed by the plant.
Rainwater can also accumulate in the pitcher and it is said that monkeys sometimes drink this. Due to this, the plant is also known as the ‘Monkey Cup’.
The flowers on these plants will bloom in April or May and look like upside-down umbrellas.
They grow cleverly over the pitches so those welcome pollinators won’t get caught in their pitchers.
Depending on the type of plant, the colors of its flowers can range from white, yellow, pink, burgundy, or red.
Hot Lips, Psychotria Elata
Found in tropical rainforests in Central and South America, this plant is very noticeable due to its bright red color against the deep green leaves.
The flowers really earned this plant its name as they resemble nothing other than a pair of red lips.
These flowers attract butterflies and hummingbirds which act as good pollinators.
If you are looking to grow this in your yard for some color, they thrive in full sun so be sure to place them in an area where this is possible. They are also drought tolerant once they are established!
Achiote, Bixa Orellana
This plant, found in the Amazon Rainforest is used to color foods using its yellow and red dye.
This plant is in the shape of a small shrub and its flowers bloom into beautiful colors of white and pink. They grow into clusters of five by the ends of the branches of the shrub.
Fruits also grow on this plant and they are spikey, usually red or brown in color and they contain the seeds and capsules which have the dye.
Giant Water Lily, Victoria Amazonica
These plants are fantastic to witness on the Amazon River. They usually measure 10 feet across and can carry the weight of a small child. They are flat and circular in shape, and green in color.
Their flowers are also large, around 16 inches in diameter, opening up for only 2 to 3 days. When they first open they are white in color, and later on turn pink.
These exotic plants are named after Queen Victoria of England.
Camu Camu Plant, Myrciaria Dubia
The Camu Camu plant grows as a shrub near lakes and rivers.
They are known for their citrus fruit that grows from them which is used for desserts and sauces in Amazon regions. It is a fruit known for its high Vitamin C content.
The flowers that grow on the plant are small and white with a waxy texture. They carry a sweet-smelling, pleasant aroma.
If you’d like to grow your own camu camu, they prefer to live in temperatures from around 79 to 82 degrees Fahrenheit.
The seeds will germinate after around 10 days and once it is grown the flowers will begin to bloom in the summertime, usually from July through to September.
If you are looking for some ground cover to brighten up your backyard, then the Bougainvillea may be for you.
Native to South America, they are also grown in other areas, mainly as ornamental plants. What makes them so attractive is not their flower necessarily, but the beautiful leaves that surround them.
They grow in a range of colors such as magenta, hot pink, light pink, orange, red, and purple.
The flowers on the Bougainvillea are usually small in size and white in color. Having the colorful leaves surrounding these little white flowers makes this plant all the more attractive.
Silky Oak, Grevillea Robusta
The Silky oak is a beautiful evergreen tree. Native to rainforests in Australia, these beauties will grow up to 75 feet tall.
When they have matured they will produce bright golden and orange flowers, in the shape of soft spikes. They will usually bloom during the spring and summer.
What also makes this tree so appealing to the eye is its fern-like leaves that are olive green and silvery.
They are disease and pest-free and prefer to be grown in well-drained soil and in locations with the full-on sun. Once fully grown they are drought-tolerant, an added bonus!
Corpse Flower, Amorphophallus Titanum
Ending this list with the largest and smelliest flower in the world is the Corpse Flower. Native to the rainforests of Indonesia, this flower smells of rotten flesh when it is in bloom.
Luckily, they only bloom once every seven to nine years, and each bloom lasts 24 to 36 hours…phew!
This horrible stench is said to attract its main pollinators who happen to eat dead flesh.
The smell and dark color of the flower are meant to attract these pollinators as these aspects mimic dead animals.
Tropical flowers tend to be striking in appearance due to their quirky shapes and colors.
As long as you can mimic the conditions they are grown in, such as humidity (this can be done using mist if you don’t live in a humid area) then you are good to go!