Jade vine: A color unlike any other in the plant world

The jade vine (Strongylodon macrobotrys) is blooming at the Botanics, and it's a must-see. This member of the Fabaceae family---closely related to your bog-standard garden runner bean---has turquoise flowers in a color unique in the plant world. These images aren't Photoshopped. The jade vine blooms are actually the color of a Caribbean sea, and, upon closer inspection, reveal dusky purples edging toward pink and navy blues.

Jade vine is native to the Phillipines, and must be kept above 59 degrees Fahrenheit to grow. Despite living in Scotland, albeit in a warm glasshouse, the vine at the Botanics is in fine form this year with more than 70 inflorescences reported by its caretaker. She told me she gave it a hard prune last year and was afraid it wouldn't bloom at all. Instead it's done the opposite. It's one of those plants that doesn't look real, and that's the most wonderful thing about it.