Fantastic Flora

Whoa, look at the size of those dandelions! Never seen anything like those in real life.

In real life, plants are important in nature. They provide oxygen, pollen for bees, food for herbivores and they make your garden look nice.

In fiction, however, things can get much more diverse and much, much stranger, as fantasy and sci-fi writers like to create their own unique plants with bizarre appearances and properties. Some may be carnivorous, fast-growing, even sentient. Some may be explosive, springy or maybe fiery.

You get the idea. They're very strange plants. They may or may not be just magic. Usually found on alien planets or in other dimensions. If someone can control these things watch out.

In some cases, they don't have to be any particularly wild properties, and are more or less just analogues for real plants or fruit, but they're still called something fantastic.

Subtropes:


Examples

Anime and Manga
  • In One Piece:
    • The IQ plants, which stimulate evolution in animals that eat it. Dr Indigo used them to create SIQ.
    • Some of Usopp's Pop Greens become very bizarre plants such as a bush that grows into a wolf and the bulb releases a 3 meter diameter shock wave.
  • Hellstar Remina is covered in this and it all wants to murder you. Much like the rest of the planet.

Comic Books
  • In Tooth And Claw there are 'mineral gardens' where plants made of stone and metal somehow grow. Their 'flowers' appear to be gemstones.

Literature
  • In Harry Potter, there are various fantastic plants, such as the mandrake roots that look like human beings and can kill people with their cry, the gillyweed, that helps Harry breathe underwater, and the Mimbletonia, Neville's pet plant.
  • In The Stormlight Archive, the world of Roshar is entirely dominated by the massive Highstorms, violent hurricanes which every few days scour the land to bare rock. In the face of this, Roshar's vegetation has become more analogous to coral or sea anenomes than terrestrial vegetation, extending leaves or tendrils when the weather is fair and then retracting them when danger threatens. For another example, the main food grain of Roshar is something called lavis, which, instead of growing a head of grain the way terrestrial grain does, possesses a head-sized shell of stone-like substance within which the grains grow, suspended in a sand-like medium.
  • The Aralorn Series by Patricia Briggs mentions the coralis tree that attracts butterflies with its blossoms, then closes the petals above them, and digests them.

Film — Live Action
  • In a Czech movie Adele Hasn't Had Her Dinner Yet, the villainous Gardener grew many fantastic plants: A flower with human-like eyes that sheds tears; a flower with pollen that makes people freeze on spot immediately; a rose that can pour tea from a pot to cups, or cut its own rosebud with a pair of scissors and give it to a lady as a present. He also cultivated fast-sprouting beans used to rob apartments or a rose that puts ladies into deep sleep, used to invoke a very sinister scheme. The highlight of his devilish greenhouse is a carnivorous plant Adele that eats sausages, mice, dogs and people.

Video Games
  • Eternal Sonata has the Heaven's Mirror, a flower that hides in its buds during the daylight and releases it all in a brilliant display at exactly 2 A.M. in the morning, symbolic of the playable character Polka, and the time of death of the famous real-life composer and playable character Frederic Chopin. There's also the Simile flower, which only blooms with water from Simile Spring, but wilts if you water it with regular water.
  • Tales of Graces has the Sopheria flower, which Sophie is named after. When it blooms, its seeds glow a bright pink and rise into the air spontaneously.
  • The Deep Jungle world of the first Kingdom Hearts game has an area with flowers that change color depending depending on which spell is cast on them. They turn black if Heartless are nearby and disintegrate if they stay there. You also have to destroy a giant bluish fruit that was apparently attracting Heartless. Wonderland has flowers that drop improved items if you give them a specific item and plants that summon treasure chests if you cast Thunder on them. The series also has Heartless based on plants.
  • Psychonauts has several examples early on. Each stage — excluding the Hub Level — is a surreal Mental World tailored to a different character's personality, leading to oddities like a military-themed level with plants made from dogtags and barb wire.
  • One of the Ages in Myst III: Exile consists of a gigantic hollow tree which hosts loads of examples of this trope, including plants that act like ladders, sun-focusing lenses, water pipes, trapeze lines, and an elevator.
  • The Sun, a genetically created plant from House of the Dead III.

Western Animation
  • From My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic:
    • Poison Joke which causes humorous afflictions on those who come in contact with it.
    • Zap Apples which only grow during a lightning storm and are used to make Zap Apple Jam.
  • Dragon Tales had dragonberries, which all of the characters loved eating. Also, Dragon Land is loaded with unusual plants in general— the third season story "A Small Victory" features all of the main characters (and guest Lorca) searching for unusual flowers.
  • Both of the most recent Care Bears incarnations, Adventures in Care-a-Lot and Welcome to Care-a-Lot have delicious bumbleberries.
  • Numerous in PB&J Otter, including babbleberries, pompalopes, pompanuts and giggle melons. Most of these are just fantasy equivalents of real-world plants, but the giggle melons actually make you giggle when you eat them.
  • "Garden Variety Pickle" on ToddWorld featured the kids in the main cast and Todd's dog Benny making an abandoned lot into a garden. They planted things such as glitter flowers, a flower that could eat rocks and a tree with several different types of dog biscuits. None of these, however, were the focus of the story. This instead, went to a small scraggly weed with no unusual properties that Pickle was caring for because he found it beautiful, the story having An Aesop about respecting how different things are beautiful to different people.
  • In the Codename: Kids Next Door episode "Operation: T.U.R.N.I.P" the team fights a gigantic, tentacled, uh, turnip.
  • The forgotten 1966 cartoon series of The Lone Ranger made use of this in the episode "Forest of Death", in which Tonto has to go after a mad botanist who wants to conquer the West with mutant plants he's bred. Some of the highlights include: lilies that release clouds of deadly poison when they open, a literal strangler vine, mangrove trees with hands on their roots that try to drown victims, cacti with instant-death poison on their needles that grow to maturity in seconds, lotuses that spit barbed dart-like seedpods (which grow into new lotuses within seconds of impact), and a giant, carnivorous flower that almost makes a meal out of Tonto. Ironically, the one plant experiment he failed at was his efforts to breed a Plant Person: his army of "treemen" turns out to be nothing but hired thugs in thick tree costumes.