Saturday, October 27, 2007

Mystery Flower

Up in a secluded corner of Bali this summer, I was wandering the grounds of an abandoned, recently bankrupted hotel where I used to stay. I suddenly came upon one of the most interesting and strange looking flowers I've ever seen. Fortunately I had my camera with me, so I took a photo of it for later identification. I had assumed it was some kind of bizarre orchid because of the protruding stamen. Several friends told me I was wrong.

Today, after several months of guessing, I unexpectedly came across a photo of an almost identical flower while researching different varieties of passion fruit. Wikipedia had a picture of the passion fruit flower. Eureka! That's what I saw in Bali. Even the surrounding leaves are identical.

Here's a photo I took of the type of passion fruit available in Bali. It's not wrinkled and purple like the ones in American specialty markets. Its skin is orange, rather like a large kumquat. The Indonesians call it a markisa. The flesh is tart, slippery and refreshing.

Once again, my love of tropical fruits has led me to learn something new.

No comments: