This charming species can be seen displaying its pendent flowers in the West Tropical House.
A forest-dweller of the Philippines, Medinilla crassata is an elegant plant for a warm, humid environment. One of approximately 375 tropical species from Africa, Madagascar, New Guinea and the Pacific, it belongs to the family Melastomataceae, which comprises herbaceous plants, shrubs, trees and lianes. M. crasssata is a compact evergreen with glossy leaves and panicles of delicate, translucent blooms held by blue-purple calyces and stems. These resemble crystal chandeliers, hence the common name chandelier plant. Once flowering has finished the plant will bear red fruits which ripen to black.