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Victoria house (house 3)

This greenhouse with its remarkable construction follows on to the south of the large palm house. On warm summer days, however, the visitor walks into the quite oppressive heat and humidity typical of the lowland tropics. Then, surrounded by a multitude of flowering climbers, the water basin is filled with tropical water lilies gracefully displaying their splendour.

Sown in February, the Victoria water lily with its giant floating leaves will flower at the height of summer. Its circular leaves can grow up to two metres in diameter. They float flat on the water surface, with upturned edges and are supported by a strong, prickly, web-like structure of air-filled ribs. One leaf can easily support a small child sitting on it.

Some species open their flowers only in the evening and stay open until early in the morning.

Starting in July, the lotus flowers rise high above the waterline, displaying their shield-shaped leaves on long stems near the balustrade.

Unlike the Victoria whose seeds need to be newly planted every year, it is the rhizomes, the “roots” of the lotus plant that are overwintered. They remain in their planters and will sprout in spring soon after being returned to the water.

When entering the Victoria house, one notices the hanging pitcher plants (Nepenthes). They belong to the carnivorous plants.

The titan arum flower is impressive, but it is a challenge for the nose.

During wintertime, the drained water basin is used to accommodate coldhouse plants from various continents.

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