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Aristolochia grandiflora


Aristolochia grandiflora Sw.

Family Name: Aristolochiaceae
Synonyms: Aristolochia gigas, Aristolochia pichinchensis
Common Name: Pelican Flower


Family Name
Genus Epithet
Species Epithet
Name Authority
Common Names

Classifications and Characteristics

Plant Division Angiosperms (Flowering Seed Plants) (Dicotyledon)
Plant Growth Form Climber, Vine & Liana
Lifespan (in Singapore) Perennial
Mode of Nutrition Autotrophic


Native Distribution Jamaica, southern Mexico to Panama
Native Habitat Terrestrial (Primary Rainforest)
Preferred Climate Zone Tropical
Local Conservation Status Non-native (Horticultural / Cultivated Only)

Description and Ethnobotany

Growth Form Herbaceous climber that grows more than 10 m long.
Foliage Heart-shaped leaves are smooth or have a downy texture.
Flowers Large, trumpet-shaped flower is white with dark brownish purple splotches (10-20 cm wide). This species produces one of the largest flowers in the New World. The flowers last 2 days, acting like a female flower on the first day and a male flower on the second day. On the first day, it opens at dawn and produces a foul smell to attract flies and hornets. The flowers have hairs that point downwards which trap the insects in its pouch, ensuring that the insects provide pollen to the stigma or female part. On the second day, pollen is produced and the trapped insects are coated in pollen as they try to escape. The plant hairs that prevented their escape wither, and the pollen-bearing insects are released, so they can pollinate other flowers.
Habitat Found in tropical forests, thickets and near streams.
Etymology The specific epithet 'grandiflora' means large flower.

Landscaping Features

Desirable Plant Features Ornamental Flowers, Fragrant (Flowers)
Landscape Uses Parks & Gardens, Trellis / Arbour / Pergola

Plant Care and Propagation

Light Preference Full Sun, Semi-Shade
Water Preference Moderate Water
Rootzone Tolerance Well-Drained Soils
Propagation Method Seed

Floral (Angiosperm)

Flower & Plant Sexuality Bisexual Flowers
Flower Colour(s) Purple, White
Flower Texture(s) Smooth
Flower Grouping Cluster / Inflorescence
Flower Location Axillary
Flower Symmetry Bilateral
Individual Flower Shape Trumpet-shaped
Flowering Opening Time Daytime
Flower Lifespan on Plant Several Days (2)
Flowering Habit Polycarpic
Flowering Opening Time Remarks Opens at dawn
Flower Size 15 cm

Image Repository



Master ID 31403
Species ID 5800
Flora Disclaimer The information in this website has been compiled from reliable sources, such as reference works on medicinal plants. It is not a substitute for medical advice or treatment and NParks does not purport to provide any medical advice. Readers should always consult his/her physician before using or consuming a plant for medicinal purposes.
Species record last updated on: 20 August 2021.