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News from the Alpine Garden

5 October 2004

Autumn arrives earlier in the mountains than on the plains. The Alpine Garden on the Schachen, at an altitude of 1,860 m, closed with the onset of autumn on the 15th of September 2004.

Entrance to the Alpine Garden with Pinus cembra. This specie of pine is uncommon in Germany and on the Schachen one of the largest populations is present.

View from the Alpine Garden

Misty autumn moods in the Alpine Garden

Autumn sunshine

Text: Ehrentraud Bayer
Photos: Jennifer Wainwright-Klein

A rare plant comes into flower Megacarpaea polyandra

This imposing member of the cabbage family originates from areas of the Himalaya with high precipitation and grows at altitudes between 3,000 m and 4,300 m. The Alpine Garden on the Schachen is the only place in the whole of Germany where Megacarpaea polyandra can be brought into flower. But the horticulturist needs patience. For the first 10 or more years only the rosette of finely dissected leaves appears each spring. Once enough reserve energy has been stored in the swollen tap root, the flower stalk emerges with the first leaves at the end of winter and grows a majestic 1 to 2 metres with hundreds of small pale yellow flowers. After flowering and setting seed the plant dies and the cycle starts again from a newly germinated seed.

Jennifer Wainwright-Klein, supervisor of the Alpine Garden, next to Megacarpaea polyandra (in the background: Hunting Lodge of Ludwig II on the Schachen)

Flower stalk of Megacarpaea polyandra

Single flower of Megacarpaea polyandra

Text: Andreas Gröger

2005 2004

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