Sago cycas: Rare flower blooms in pairs in northwest China

A pair of over 20-year-old male and female sago cycas, a rare blooming plant, are beginning to bloom in Urumqi City, capital of northwest China's Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region. 

Sago cycas is a species of gymnosperm in the family Cycadaceae, native to southern Japan including the Ryukyu Islands. 

In a greenhouse of the Yanerwo scenery spot, where there are more than 200 sago cycas, two blooming flowers stand out. The female flower is globular and faint yellow, while the male flower is long cylindrical and tawny.

"The temperature in this greenhouse is close to temperatures in southern China. And these sago cycas are well nourished because we fertilized them with compound fertilizer and iron fertilizer," said Ma Jingyun, senior gardener of the scenery spot. 

Sago cycas is a dioecism plant with a fluorescence lasting 20 days to one month. Its female flower is mostly red and lavender, so this faint yellow flower is very rare.

(Cover image from VCG)