I Like Lifesavers-Do You?
I like Life Savers, especially Butter Rum. Who doesn’t? I’m not talking about candy though, but the life saver plant, Huernia zebrina. This stem succulent is from South Africa and is in the Asclepiadaceae, or milkweed family. When I first saw this amazing flower at a local greenhouse, I had to have it. How awesome is this flower?! It does look just like a life saver with little striped triangles around it. I have mine on my south bedroom window and it blooms regularly.
Another member of this family is the Huernia schneideriana, also called Red Dragon plant. It has small, maroon, 5-sided flowers, that look nothing like the life-saver plant, but still interesting, none the less. These flowers come from the base of the plant and are quite often hard to see as they are nestled down inside the plant. You may miss them if you don’t pay attention.
|Huernia schneideriana flower(Excuse the cat hair stuck to it……)|
|Huernia schneideriana flower with bud|
In the picture above, the entire zebrina plant is showing. The schneideriana on the left is hanging down from the shelf above. These two are both in the greenhouse.
I have the huernia kennedyana but so far, have not seen it bloom. I can’t wait for it to bloom, because it is really cool, with teeth-looking appendages on it.
Huernias were named for Justus van Heurne [1577-1652], a Dutch missionary. Robert Brown, while naming it, spelled his last name wrong and so instead of being Heurnia, it is Huernia. Poor Justus…..
I’m always on the look out for new and interesting plants and these huernias definitely fit the bill.