Snapdragon, genus Antirrhinum, commonly called dragon flowers

image of the iside of a pink flower

Inside a snapdragon flower

It has been said that these flowers resemble a dragon’s face.  The ‘mouth’ of the dragon opens and closes.  The flower is actually ‘bilabiate’, or two-lipped, and the lower lip is used as a landing pad for pollinators who visit the flowers.  These flowers also have what is called, ‘personate’ floral shape.  Snapdragons used to be placed in the Scrophulariaceae family, but have now been grouped into the Plantaginaceae family.

When one opens the flower, one can plainly see four distinct stamens with yellow anthers (pollen), at two different heights.  These are called ‘didynamous stamens’, and they’re a common diagnostic characteristic for this family.  If you look closely, you can see a greenish ‘stigma’, or female part of the flower located in the center of the four stamens.

Several snapdragons are now blooming at the south end of the Tucker Greenhouse, making it feel much more like spring.

The most dangerous job on campus

When a pane of glass breaks on the walls or the roof of the Tucker greenhouse, it is the job of a Campus Facilities carpenter to fix it.  On Monday, the crew showed up to replace three broken panes that were about 30 feet in the air.

man fixing glass

Glass repair on west wall of the Desert room at the Tucker Greenhouse

man fixing glass

A big ‘thank you’ to whoever invented scaffolding


So many blooms, so little time to upload pictures of them

red flower

One of three Hibiscus plants in the Tucker Greenhouse

odd shaped white tower

One of several blooming Hoya plants in the Tucker Greenhouse.  This plant is in the Apocynaceae family

yellow and orange daisy

Ratibida columnifera or Mexican Hat found in the Asteraceae family

pink flower

Dianthus sp. found in the Caryophyllaceae family


One of two pineapple plants with developing pineapples. This is found in the Bromeliaceae family


This is the Blue Agave-the one tequila is made from. It is found in the Asparagaceae family

I’ll be posting lots of photos of this developing inflorescence stalk as time goes on.  It could reach a height of 2-5 meters.  It will also have gorgeous white blooms.

orange flower

This is one of three different types of Kalenchoe we have growing in the Tucker Greenhouse. It is found in the Crassulaceae family.