The world’s biggest flower Rafflesia Speciosa is in bloom in the municipality of Sibalom, Antique but in rare form.
Jonathan de Gracia, general manager of the Sibalom Water District and an environmental enthusiast, received a picture of two intertwined blooming flowers of the Rafflesia speciosa in the upland area of Barangay Bad-as, which is about 22 kilometers from the Sibalom town proper.
“The two Rafflesia flowers are quite rare because they bloomed at the same time and are intertwining with each other,” he said in an interview.
He said the Rafflesia, which blooms only after nine months, can rarely be found only in one spot that is why the local folks in Barangay Bad-as were surprised by the latest discovery.
The reddish-orange color Rafflesia speciosa could expand up to 56 centimeters in diameter when in full bloom, making it the world’s biggest flower.
It was first discovered by a group of conservationists, the Antique Outdoors (Aos), at the Sibalom Natural Park in Mt. Poras in 2000.
Dr. Julie Barcelona, a botanist, studied the exotic flower species that thrived only in Sibalom and named it as Rafflesia speciosa.
“Dr. Barcelona named the flower speciosa because it is special,” De Gracia said.
He said that since the flower was first discovered growing in Sibalom, the municipality also adopted it as its municipal flower.