Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Mother of Thousands

Kalanchoe daigremontiana is a succulent plant in the Crassulaceae family which produces its babies along leaf edges.  These babies send a few roots out into the air and then fall off to start their own lives, if still a bit close to home.  Mother of Thousands is but one of its common names.  Devil's Backbone and Alligator Plant are others.

All parts of this plant are poisonous.  The potentially heart-stopping glycoside, daigremontianin, is responsible.  So, don't eat it! And use gloves if you work with it.  The plant world is full of amazing. I found this specimen growing at the Daniel Stowe Botanical Gardens conservatory yesterday.

More to come...it's Conservatory World Tour week!