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Barbican Conservatory


An unexpected tropical paradise of over 2,000 plants, Koi Carp and birds can be found hidden away on the third floor of the Barbican Centre in central London. Open on Sunday afternoons it is the second largest of its kind in the capital and free to enter. Opened in 1984, the 2,100 square metres site features some mature Ficus trees giving great scale together with bamboo and palms which reach high up to the giant glass ceiling. Sights of London can be seen through the balconies’ windows; light and shade varying around the change of level to the upper section – leading to a succulents and orchids room. There are some wonderful tropical textures here, the plants thriving well in the acidic soil specially irrigated to suit the conditions. Hard to believe how huge some of the palms are growing in so little soil.

1. Bryophyllum 2. Mackaya 3. Bryophyllum 4. Asparagus 5. Ficus 6. Brunfelsia 7. Arthropodium 8. Bismarckia 9. x citrofortunella 10. Strelitzia 11. Philodendron 12. Plectranthus. All photographs by Amir Schlezinger.

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  1. Bryophyllum manginii

Bryophyllum manginii

  2. Mackaya bella

Mackaya bella

  3. Bryophyllum delagoense

Bryophyllum delagoense

  4. Asparagus setaceus with orchids

Asparagus setaceus with orchids  

  5. Ficus benjamina

Ficus benjamina

  6. Brunfelsia pauciflora

Brunfelsia pauciflora

  7. Arthropodium cirrhatum

Arthropodium cirrhatum

8. Bismarckia nobilis

Bismarckia nobilis

9. x citrofortunella mitis

x citrofortunella mitis

10. Strelitzia nicolai

Strelitzia nicolai

11. Philodendron bipinnatifidum

Philodendron bipinnatifidum

12. Plectranthus zuluensis

Plectranthus zuluensis

amir   Written and posted by Amir Schlezinger.

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