The Angel’s Trumpet is a semi-woody plant that can grow into a small tree. It belongs to the nightshade family, Solanaceae, similar to the vegetables that are familiar to most of us – tomatoes and potatoes.
As expected of plants that belong to this plant family, they are toxic somehow. The Angel’s Trumpet is toxic throughout and everyone’s forewarned if one is to grow it in his garden, especially in one that has very young children roaming around. Seriously, I feel there is nothing that looks delicious enough on the Angel’s Trumpet to appeal to any older child or adult.
The Angel’s Trumpet belongs to the genus Brugmansia and it is dissimilar from the Thorn Apple, Datura, although these two groups of plants were lumped together historically. Both plants produce flowers that are fragrant and the perfume of the Angel’s Trumpet is quite sweet but intense. It gets stronger with night fall. Hence the Angel’s Trumpet is a plant to grow if one is into fragrant plants.
Its flowers, as its common name suggests, is shaped like a trumpet. I would consider it as a large flower, the length of the throat can grow up to 30 cm. It is available in a range of colours, mostly in the shades of pink, orangey, cream and white. The colour of the flowers of some cultivars change as the flowers age.
A subtropical plant, the Angel’s Trumpet doesn’t just bloom every other day. One of the most effective triggers is a temperature drop. It was hot and dry during the previous month of February and due to the La Nina weather phenonmenon, rain suddenly came along for several days which brought the ambient temperature down quite drastically.
This environmental trigger has caused one of my plants to bloom. Managed to take a picture of an opened flower. It is an orange flower cultivar whose identity is not available at present. It was given to me by a fellow experienced Angel’s Trumpet grower from the Green Culture Singapore forum. To date, he has shared quite a lot of stem cuttings with the members of the forum. The Angel’s Trumpet is not easily available in local nurseries yet and not all perform equally well here in the lowland tropics. One has to try different cultivars to know its readiness to flower.
Below are two pictures of the single bloom that opened for me over the weekend. I saw a cluster of buds further up the plant! Hence I expect to witness a more spectacular floral show later on.