I'd never heard of 'Bird of Paradise' plants until a little over three years ago, when we were shopping for ornamental plants for the little patio at the front of our guest flat.
A friend recommended this plant to us, saying the flowers were gorgeous - so we bought one. And dutifully watered it regularly, and re-potted it in the spring this year. It kept growing, but there was no sign of any flowers.
About a year ago, I did spot several blooming bird of paradise plants in a neighbour's front garden. I was a little embarrassed to admit that the only reason I recognised them so quickly was due to having used the 'Lil Green Patch' application on Facebook, which features Bird of Paradise plants!
I began to wonder if ours would ever produce a flower. To my surprise, when I popped out yesterday morning, I saw it:
It really is a quite remarkable sight. I don't know how long it will last, of course, and assume there is only one bloom per plant.
Here it is again from the other direction:
Apparently bird of paradise plants are also sometimes known as crane plants.