Black bat flower Facts

Black bat flower Facts
Black bat flowers (scientifically known as Tacca chantrieri) is a plant that belongs to the yam family. There are 10 species of bat flowers that differ in size, color and type of habitat where they can be found. Black bat flowers are native to tropical parts of southeastern Asia (China, Thailand and Burma). Jungle is natural habitat of black bat flowers. It provides high humidity, shade and well drained soil, which are all essential for the proper growth and development of the plant. People cultivate black bat flower because of its large, decorative leaves and unique type of flowers. Unfortunately, black bat flower is very rare in the wild and it cannot be cultivated easily because it can survive only under specific environmental conditions. Black bat flower is listed as endangered plant.
Interesting Black bat flower Facts:
Black bat flower can grow to the height of 36 inches.
Black bat flower has large, bright green leaves with a smooth texture.
Black bat flower has underground bulb which is used for storing of nutrients.
The most impressive part of the black bat flower is (as it name suggests) - its flower. It consists of 2 large dark brackets (leaves that look like petals) and long filaments (bracteole, modified leaves) that are forked at the ends. Dark colored brackets look like wings, while filaments resemble whiskers of a bat, hence the name.
Flowers of black bat flower are 12 inches wide and have 28 inches long filaments. First flower will appear on a plant after full development of at least 3 to 4 leaves.
Black bat flower has purple to black flowers, but they also can be maroon, bronze, brown and green colored.
Recently discovered close relative of black bat flower is white bat flower. It differs from black bat flower in the color of brackets. Instead of black, white bat flower has white brackets.
Black bat flower blooms from late spring to early autumn. Plant can bloom 8 times per season and produce 6 to 12 flower stems during that period.
Black bat flowers can be propagated via division of rhizome and tuber or via seeds.
Propagation via seed requires time and patience. Healthy seeds are formed only when capsule (filled with seed) matures naturally and splits while it is still on plant. This process may last up to 18 months.
Germination of seed may last nearly 12 months.
Black bat flowers don't like greenhouses because they lack breeze. These plants require same conditions (amount of humidity, light and air) as orchids for the successful growth. Luckily, pests don't attack black bat flowers.
Unusual morphology of the plant is responsible for a widely spread superstition. Allegedly, evil eye will start stalking you if you spend too much time looking the plant.
According to another false belief, too much watching of plant may result in sudden death of an individual or some of her/his close relative.
Black bat flower is perennial plant, which means that it completes its life cycle after more than two years.

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