Black Bat Flower Facts
- The Black Bat Flower, also known as the Tacca chantrieri, represents a species of flowering plant that, believe it or not, forms a member of the yam family. However, though not considered toxic, it is not considered edible, either.
- It forms a most unusual species in that the flowers show black in color. This ranks it as one of the few known flowers of which this holds true.
- Many people consider the blooms to have a somewhat bat-like shape, hence the name. Though black is the predominant color, the flower does occasionally come in white or brown.
- While it does not hold an official listing with the IUCN, most experts consider the species to be endangered. Climate change represents its greatest threat, due to its need for a highly specific type of habitat.
Black Bat Flower Physical Description
The Black Bat Flower typically attains a height of roughly 36 in (91 cm). It will also often develop tendrils that sometimes reach as much as 28 in (71 cm) in length.
However, the most impressive part of the plant remains its unique bloom. This distinctive bloom often reaches a width of as much as 12 in (30 cm), while the modified leaves reach lengths of as much as 28 in (71 cm) in length.
The wide bloom consists of 2 large dark brackets and the long modified leaves fork at the ends. The dark brackets look like wings, and the leaves resemble the whiskers of a bat, hence the name.
The other leaves of the plant develop a bright green color and have a very smooth texture. It also produces an underground bulb used to store nutrients.
Species: T. chantrieri
Black Bat Flower Distribution, Habitat, and Ecology
Sadly, however, all 10 known varieties of this plant have become extremely rare in the wild. Furthermore, efforts to cultivate the plant rarely succeed.
This unique flower requires very specific habitat types to flourish. Its primary natural habitat consists of areas of tropical jungle.
This astounding perennial also requires high levels of humidity, shade, and well-drained soil in order to truly thrive.
The various varieties bloom at different times, ranging from late Spring to early Fall. The genus blooms repeatedly, often as much as 8 times in a single season.