Conservatoire et Jardin botaniques de la Ville de Genève
This greenhouse was previously home to succulents and carnivorous plants and could only be visited upon request. In order to increase our offer towards our visitors, this greenhouse has been completely transformed into a landscape inspired by the volcanic islands of the Canaries, where particularly drought-resistant plants grow through the cooled lava flows.
The rockery located at the end of the greenhouse is exclusively composed of plants endemic to these islands, such as the iconic Euphorbia canariensis. The central zone is composed of succulent plants originating from Africa, Madagascar and the Americas, demonstrating the wide geographical distribution of these plants. The lava flow finally extends outside where some Cycas bloom in the sun.
The term "succulent" is used to name plants that store water reserves in their leaves, stems, or roots in order to survive very long periods of drought. The significant morphological diversity that characterizes them results from the variety of their adaptations to a particularly hostile environment. For example, the arrangement of the leaves in a rosette, the presence of a waxy and powdery layer on the epidermis to reduce evapotranspiration, the hairs to capture moisture from the air and to protect themselves from the cold and the sun, the toxic sap or sharp thorns.
The succulent plants represent 12'000 different species, distributed in about thirty botanical families. The Cactaceae family alone represents more than 2000 species!