02 April 2009

STAPELIA GIGANTEA
{Carrion Flower}
Remember, a few posts back I had a picture of a very strange but beautiful looking flower, which was flowering in our garden? I was wondering at the time whether anyone knew the botanical name for it.
Its hard to believe that something as insignificant as a flower, could bring long lost family members together again, and for that matter across continents. My foster surname was Walters and a lady by the name of Charlmayne Walters responded with the following comprehensive description for the strange flower:
"Hi Desire
You've probably had loads of feedback on your question re your flower by now but in case not: I think it is a Stapelia Gigantea. According to the Bundu Book of Trees, Flowers and Grasses (1972) Longman: STAPELIA GIGANTEA Asciepiadaceae
carrion flower SH chikondepasi
This lare-flowered steliad has flowers some 40 cm across. It is widespread at lower altitudes and is particularly common in the south and south-east of Rhodesia. the flowers, which smell of bad meat, are pollinated by flies. There are two other species of Stapelia that occur in Rhodesia: S. gettleffii and S. Kwebensis. These also are most common in the south and south-east. Stapelia adn allied genera are termed stapeliads. Those occurring in Rhodesia are Huernia, Duvalia, Caralluma, Decebelone and Stuititia. I initially looked it up in my copy of the Royal Horticultural Society's A- Z Encyclopedia of Garden Plants and found the entry for Huernia to seemingly fit the bill but since there was no photograph that matched yours I wasn't sure so then thought of looking it up in my African books."
The above flower has also been flowering lately in our garden and belongs to the same family as the first flower. But this one is much smaller and only opens this far. I am also very glad to know that it is indigenous to Africa.
With Charlmayne having the surname Walters, it triggered immediate thoughts of her being possible family on my late foster Dad, Roelof Walters' side. So I responded to Charlmayne's email posing the obvious question. Well, it turned out that she is the daughter of my foster Dad's younger brother and have been living in England the last decade. Charlmayne has also been a silent stalker of Doing Life for some time. I am so glad that I have rediscovered one of my nieces 'niggies'. Charlmayne also is an avid gardener and nature lover.
Doing Life had the honour once again to receive the above award and this time it is from the very talented Rica. Please do visit Rica's Haven to have a look at her wonderful card creations. The rules are to pass this award on to five fellow bloggers when accepting it. It is quite difficult to choose only 5 deserving Doing Life visitors, but here goes in no particular order:

Please don't be offended if you are not one of the above five, as I would have loved to pass this on to each and everyone of you.

Thank you for popping in once again and for all your lovely inspirational comments. Remember to take a chance at Doing Life's blog candy in celebration of its 20,000 hits ... well the hits have now reached 21,000+, thanks to all your interest.

12 comments:

  1. Oh Desire - what a happy ending to your request for the botanical name for your magnificent flower.
    (I've scoured all my African books on wildlife and plants, with no avail). To find a relative in the process is amazing - obviously meant to be!!
    hugs Heather xx

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  2. what a beautiful story Desire and how glad I am that you and Charlmayne have found each other....very heartwarming and you learned the name of your flower as a bonus....Hugs Kath xxxx

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  3. Oh WoW Deseree that is one of the nicest stories ever..How realy beaUTiful ...TFS
    Those flowers are `gorgeous`
    Have a lovely Evening:)♥

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  4. Well deserving for sure. Have a lovely day!

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  5. Thanks for the award, have a good day

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  6. What a small world we live in! I am so pleased you found each other xx

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  7. It just shows how great technology is so glad you have found each other and have such an avid interest in plants too. Thanks for the award.

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  8. What an amazing flower & an even more amazing story! Somehow I missed this post so imagine my surprise when I saw you had such a beautiful award waiting for me here...you are too kind ;-)

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  9. Thank you for the compliment that I make you smile...

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  10. Oooh an award - thank you SO much Desire, I'm very flattered :o)

    And what an amazing story... it really is such a small world that we live in & now with the Internet & social utilities like Facebook, it has become that much smaller!

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  11. I am having trouble finding the blog candy honey.

    Cazzy x

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Crafty hugs
Desire