Bloom Day North

Bloom Day North

As a follow-up to the last blog, we are observing Bloom Day in Chester by posting several shots of Kalanchoes now in bloom (indoors!) in Chester Basin. The tall slender stalk of the succulent plant shown below represents an interesting new development. For several years, this specimen was content to grow in lateral directions as the stems wound around each other, putting out air-roots as it stretched out in space beyond the table on which it sat. It never had a flower stalk. What it had was a never-ending supply of little round knobs growing along the edges of its broad leaves (and invariably found on the floor having been knocked off by passers-by). This is the very first year that flower stalks have emerged and produced blooms.

Officially named Kalanchoe daigremontiana, the plant is more commonly known as Mexican Hat because those hundreds of little round knobs growing along the borders of its leaves are similar to the pom-poms that ring the broad brims of Mexican hats. The proliferation of knobs had been the norm until this year when, perhaps because the plant has put forth flowers, the knobs (leaflets?) are absent. The photo below shows tooth-like projections along the edge of some leaves where the knobs usually appear and a cluster of leaflets emerging along the edge of another.

The next two close-ups show the cluster of delicate pink flowers (umbrels) that are now beginning to open .

Below is a more familiar Kalanchoe that reappears in many Canadian homes during the winter. This one arrived last year and, although a little leggier than it was originally, it has re-bloomed twice.

Your blogger may be out of internet contact on the next Bloom Day – February 15th – but if you check your own garden (indoors as well as outside) and send us your photos, we’ll try to get them posted. If not in February, we’ll aim for March.


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