Sunday, May 1, 2011

Succulents by the thousands

Kalanchoe daigremontiana - mother of thousands

What an apt name for this plant to show its characteristics! Maybe it can still be called 'mother of millions'. We have lots of this in our property in the province, and sometimes i have to haul them distance away to the edge of the property just to be sure they will spread there and not near the house. Come rainy days and lots of them will always still appear. And it is not surprising, it is a succulent thriving on bad soils, neglect and dry climates. Solitude Rising requested it to be posted as he hasn't yet seen it . He posted another species, Kalanchoe pinnata, katakataka in local dialect here.

leaves at the left will still grow the plantlets or maybe already dropped them compared to the top right where some nodes still have the plantlets still attached. Bottom right is a different species (katakataka in Pilipino), just to compare the leaf difference. It also grows plantlets on its grooves.

a mature plant already about to flower

plantlets growing on every leaf notch

three stalks branched out from a single plant with each leaf having lots of plantlets; a baby grassphopper at the bottom right might have been amazed with the amounts of plantlets too. I hope One of onenezz will see this cricket

I haven't seen any plant as productive as this! Vegetatively it produced a lot of individual plants and reproductively it has lots of flowers. If only food plants are same as this one, maybe we are assured of food in the future's future, and we will not be scared if our children's children will still have available food. Moreover, this plant can thrive in hot climates even with little water and also thrive on neglect. A climate unfavorable for most plants will still be welcomed by this plant.

Look at the numerous roots of the plantlets even still attached to the mother plant

 If the thousand plantlets assure us of the true-to-type plants, the flowers are needed for hybridization, which eventually give us lots of possibilities in future flower colors and characteristics. No wonder, a lot of Kalanchoe species and hybrids are available. Try to google it and you will be given lots of photo pages and variations in flower characteristics.

I agree they are prolific and beautiful, but my manner or preference for gardening still doesn't favor its presence!  

Please visit the other Hot, Loud and Proud posts in Noel's site



  1. They are so beautiful! No wonder the Chinese call it 'wan zi chien hung' meaning a million sons and a thousand red (auspice). Some people also call it 'lok day sung kan' meaning taking root upon touching the ground.

    I have been slow in commenting lately, due to workload. Lots of backlog in blog visiting. I miss you!

  2. Hi AB, yes miss you too! So the Chinese call it as if it will root only after touching the ground, when actually they have roots even while still on air! So this is auspicious? So i better allow them in my mother's garden, haha! Maybe we havent been rich because i always haul and throw them, pick the small plantlets from the ground and throw them too. Don't worry about commenting, take your time, just enjoy what your are doing. take care. As Betsy from Tennessee always says, 'hugs'.

  3. I have this! I got it at a plant swap and keep it as a houseplant. It's so cool how it grows everywhere down there and thrives on neglect. It does so here in the pot but not so many babies for me. Maybe I neglect it too much?

  4. Amazing plant! Love the shot of the leaves and the 'babies'! The blooms are pretty too!!

  5. Thank you for granting my request. It is indeed a wonder plant.

    I can understand now why you don't like this plant. From your pics I can see that they produce more plantlets than K. pinnata. But I find the flowers of the K.pinnata more beautiful.

    By the way, thanks for the free advertisement... :)

  6. aloha andrea,

    i agree, i'm in awe with this plant, it is amazing and so beautiful! love autumn belles explanation of the million sons...fantastic = only on botanical will you read about these varietions.

  7. Love your collages! I have this plant and enjoy watching the plantlets. To me, they look like tiny flowers. I have not seen the actual bloom. Thanks for highlighting the grasshopper. Almost missed it since it is good at camouflaging. I don't throw away the plantlets and am not rich either except with little critters and blogger friends. So...

  8. Solitude Rising - the length of the flower stem in my photo is short because the original plant is very stunted and small. It can also grow very high, even longer spike than that of K pinnata. I've seen one which is tall, the flowers are bigger and more compact than the Katakataka. 'You should not judge a plant by its photo', joke, hahaha!

  9. Nakakapagtaka kung bakit siya katakataka.

    Hmm. I wonder if the reason is as nice as that of AB's Chinese name.

    BTW, nice shots of the plantlets.

  10. It truly is amazing how many baby plants some succulents can produce!

  11. I had never seen all the 'babies' though I had heard that name before. Fascinating!

  12. Bom - the K. pinnata is called 'katakataka' because it produces lots of plantlets on its leaves. When we were kids we insert a leaf in our notebooks and after sometime, some plantlets grow on the notches, isn't that unbelievable or 'katakataka'. hahaha! Yes Autumn Belle's explanations are the reasons, and that is why they are believed to be auspicious by the Chinese.

  13. One - you found the grasshoper because i told you it's there, did you see the skipper moth, i bet you didn't. LOL. If you will not throw all those plantlets, you will realize after sometime that your whole garden will be full of it, and you are rich with them. Or if there is a miracle that all of them can be sold, then you will be rich and truly it is very auspicious!

  14. Thanks also for your comments and visits: Tina, Kanak, Noel, Sarah Knight, EG Wow, Holley Garden

    I surely appreciate the time you spent here and hope you gained at least a little pleasure in my post.

  15. I have the Bright red Flaming katy ( also a member of the Kelanchoe family growing in containers n quite like these 'show stopper' succulents , when they are in bloom. They are non demanding n propagate easily too. Thx for sharing the details of this one here.

  16. Hahaha... I try not to judge a plant by its picture. But I'm only human :)

  17. I followed the link from your 2012 succulent and cacti show posting. I was just telling Autumn Belle about inserting the leaves in my textbook and wondering what the plant was called! I recently blog about Mothers of Millions in my garden which is equally invasive (though not in my garden) and also poisonous to cattle in Australia.

  18. This is an Amazing plant. I can see how it does produce alott of plantlets.



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