Saturday, January 05, 2008

A Tuberous Impatiens

This is probably one of the better known impatiens amongst caudiciform and succulent growers, little known in the wider ornamental plant growing community. Werner Rauh has chosen this species to be included in his book Succulent and Xerophytic Plants of Madagascar Volume One, Strawberry Press (1995). It is aptly named Impatiens tuberosa. It is a perennial which sheds its stems during the dry season when it goes dormant. With the onset of the next growing season, new stems will emerge from the dormant buds on the stubby irregular above ground tuber. The plant comes from Montagnes des Francais near Antsiranana and Windsor Castle in Northern Madagascar on limestone cliff. It is likely to be found growing in cracks with accumulated peat with other Euphorbia species from the same area.

The flowering plant above is only 3 mths old from seed! Perhaps its rapid growth is an adaption to the strongly seasonal climate with a short rainy monsoon. The caudice is not obvious at this stage. But it is clear from the photo below that the stem will abscise just above the tiny bud:


Hort Log said...

got spares?

tulear said...

I'll pollinate it. Should be easy.