This stemless thistle has rosettes of spiny leaves and a lilac-brown or white flower-head surrounded by silvery bracts
Wonderful orange red papery bracts
surround the developing seed giving it the appearance, and its common name, of a Chinese lantern.
The Clustered Mountain Mint is actually showy in the garden looking green then forming silver coloured bracts
with disks that open to reveal small pink blossoms.
In plants with upright inflorescences, microhabitats called phytotelmata may form in the bracts
. Each phytotelma consists of a small water reservoir formed by plant structures that have the ability to retain water (Maguire 1971; Machado-Alisson et al.
Unlike most plants its leaf-like bracts
are more striking than its actual flowers.
The Betuloideae share features such as laminar secondary bracts
and one to three flowers in the pistillate cyme, tepals in the staminate flower, tracheids in wood, pollen with arci and nutlets with wings.
Some of the shifts have been aesthetic: decorator poinsettias in lime green, ivory or burgundy, poinsettias whose petal-like bracts
are flecked, marbled, splashed and otherwise turned into something that will spur your aunt to wonder what they will think of next.
The pigment composition and colouration of inflorescence bracts
of Calathea crotalifera were evaluated in this study.