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The banana plant brings a touch of the tropics to any room with its decorative foliage making an attractive feature. Given light, space and warmth; ideally in a conservatory, there is no reason why it shouldn t produce fruit. Bananas grow in large, hanging bunches and a row of bananas is sometimes called a hand , while a single banana is called a finger . Bananas contain around 75% water and they have a high nutritional value and are a healthy snack. Fibre taken from banana plants can also be used to make clothes.
The Body Snatcher plant is a Sundew variety. It is characterised by the glandular tentacles covered with rows of red hairs and each hair is tipped with sticky glistening droplets that resembles dew drops in the morning. The insects are attracted by the droplets which they mistake for nectar and are trapped. The tentacles then slowly enfold its prey and the plant begins to digest its capture. These plants live in boggy and sterile conditions, so they rely on its prey to obtain its nutrients. They also have pretty pink or white flowers and make a lovely plant for a sunny windowsill.
The Hooded Terminator plant is also known as Hooded Pitcher Plant. The tubes are mostly green throughout, but can also be reddish in the upper part. The plants have domed pitchers with translucent white patches that allow light to enter. Insects are attracted by the sweet smelling nectar. Once in the mouth of the plant, insects try to escape through the light shining through these patches. Instead of escaping they fall deeper into the pitcher where they are imprisoned by the downward pointing hairs that trap them ready for slow digestion. The Hooded Executioner plant also attracts ants, in addition to a wide range of flying insects.
The Lightning plant is commonly known as the Forked-Leaf Sundew. Insects are attracted by their bright single fork leaves with tentacles which fool them into thinking they are coated with glistening nectar. Instead, each leaf is covered with rows of red tentacles tipped with sparkling droplets of powerful glue! Once the insect is trapped by the sticky glue the leaf enfolds and digestion begins. These unusual plants have white flowers with broad petals. They also make good terrarium plants.
Peanuts are known by many other local names such as earthnuts, ground nuts, monkey nuts, pygmy nuts and pig nuts. Despite its name and appearance, the peanut is not a nut, but rather a legume like peas and beans. They grow into pretty little plants with rounded green leaves and attractive yellow flowers. They are delicious to eat and contain lots of energy and protein.
Lithops are also known as living stones and are found in the very dry deserts of South Africa. They are neat little plants that are often taken for pebbles, which is clever as this deters the wild animals from eating them. As houseplants they thrive in low humidity and need infrequent watering and care. Height: 2.5-10cm (1-4in). Once they are mature they produce white or yellow blooms.
The cotton plant is a nice summer green plant that will flower in late summer and then forms the cotton square which turns into a boll that looks like white cotton candy. Plants like lots of sunshine and sufficient moisture to wet the roots thoroughly and then allowed to dry. You will harvest your fluffy cotton in about 130-150 days from sowing.The beautiful green plant will grow 0.9 m to 1.2 m (3 to 4 feet) tall.
The name Monkeyball plant is inspired by the decorative, unique 5cm to 6 cm ( 2 to 2.5 ) inflated, translucent lime green hairy seed pods which are produced in late summer. They provide much amusement dangling from the upper branches of the plant. It is also a very cool cut flower. It is a curiosity plant, with drooping clusters of white flowers, giving way to these hairy pods. Mature plants grown in the ground can reach six feet in height and up to six feet in width but container plants although restricting the size of the plant, make it easy to bring indoors in the winter. Position in full sun or partial shade. Over time (and protected from frost), the plant can develop a thick, woody stem, which tends to dip under the weight of its branches, flowers and fruits, taking the shape of the neck of a swan, that is why it is also called Swan plant . Flowers are a nectar source for many butterflies and leaves are a food source for monarch butterfly larvae (caterpillars). Sow the seed in the spring to early summer.
Mouse Melon is the world s cutest watermelon. The fruit is small enough to fit into a teaspoon, yet bite into one and the flavour is pure cucumber with a refreshing tinge of lime. These unusual plants make pretty, high-yielding vines and produces lots of fruit. They are native to Mexico and Central America. They are also known in Spanish as sand ita (little watermelon), or Cucamelons, as they are a member of the cucumber family.
This is a lovely and decorative pumpkin with stunning blueish-green to ghoulish Halloween grey! It originates from the town of Jarrahdale in New Zealand. The flattened, firm-ribbed fruits have a nutty golden to orange coloured, sweet, and stringless flesh. This easy-to-grow pumpkin makes delicious pumpkin pies, attractive centerpieces and dramatic Jack-o-Lanterns.
Growing your own is fun and inexpensive, and a great project to do with children. The Rainbow Strawberry plants are great on hanging baskets and containers. They are also great groundcover and will complement all your flowering plants! They will give spring blooms of rainbow colours, followed by big, juicy-sweet colourful berries in summer. And the large dark green leaves, neatly veined remain attractive from early spring until frost!
This is a very unusual cucumber and can make an equally unusual drink that will cool you down on hot summer days. The Hmong cucumber is halfway between a cucumber and a melon. They are easy to grow as any other cucumber and if you let them, they can grow to an amazing size. It is a very productive and tasty variety that stays mild even when large. This heirloom originates from the Hmong tribe, who are very ancient people and live on the mountainous regions of Thailand, China, Burma, Laos and Vietnam.
Each little magic bean comes with a message. It s a unique live gift! They are a special gift just for you or just for someone special in your life. It s easy to plant and in ideal conditions the green leaves will sprout in just a few days. Make sure to water every week and watch your special message appear as your bean grows.
The Spooky Ghost plant also known as the white pitcher plant is a tall and graceful trumpet pitcher plant that will grow tube like traps . They can be highly variable with respect to its pitchers, with plants reaching almost 1 metre in height, while others can be diminutive. They have ferocious appetites, often consuming hundreds of flies, which are attracted by their dripping nectar. The victims slip down the slimy surface of the mouth and tumble deep into the pitcher where they are imprisoned by the downward pointing hairs that trap them ready for slow digestion.
Strawberry popcorn is a great little plant that only grows four foot high, but has at least two ears on every stalk. Deep red kernels fill these little ears. Can you imagine red popcorn? How cool is that! Children will be fascinated as they watch these ruby-red kernels pop into fluffy white tasty treats, delicious to eat! They also make excellent autumn decorations.
Now you can grow your very own Giant Sunflower. Follow the instructions carefully and in just three or four months it would grow to an amazing ten feet tall! The flowers can grow to up to one foot across with pretty yellow petals and a warm ochre and black centre. Each year you can collect the seeds and use them to grow again and again, or you can leave them out to feed the birds in the wintertime.
Have you ever seen a plant that moves when you tickle it? Mimosa Pudica, is also known as Sensitive plant, TickleMe Plant and touch-me-not. It is a creeping plant grown for its curiosity value. It can grow up to 18 inches if grown outdoors with hairy and spiny stems. Its flowers resemble little purplish puffs that produce inch-long pods containing 3 4 seeds. The plant sleeps at night as it gently folds up its leaves but wakes again and spreads its leaves as the sun rises.
This Vampire plant is a tall and graceful trumpet pitcher plant that will grow tube like traps . They are excellent at attracting flies and wasps into their mouths. The insects are attracted by their bright red veins which drip with nectar. The victims slip down the slimy surface and tumble deep into the pitcher where downward pointing hairs trap them and the insects are then slowly digested by the plant.
The Venus flytrap is an amazing small plant. People do not think of plants moving, but the Venus flytrap can catch insects with its toothed modified leaves that snap shut when triggered by prey touching the tiny hairs on the inner leaf surface. If the prey struggles, the trap will close even tighter, remaining closed from 5 to 10 days while the prey is digested. It was described by Darwin as one of the most wonderful plants in the world .
The name Toothache plant comes from the numbing properties it produces in your mouth when the leaves and flowers are chewed. The plant has reddish-green foliage and tight, compact little pompom type flowers that have no petals and are yellow with a red centre, resembling eyeballs, so the herb plant is also commonly referred to as Eyeball Plant. An easy to grow and low maintenance plant with a spreading and trailing habit, it can be grown in the ground or makes a wonderful container plant. The plants should be started indoors or in the greenhouse in the spring or early summer.
This is a strange gourd that makes an exciting plant to grow as it produces fruits that look like slippery snakes! When the fruits are dried you can paint them with spots, stars, stripes or whatever you like! Get together with your friends and see who can paint the brightest or craziest snake?