Sunday, February 10, 2013

Senecio haworthii: A Felty, Fuzzy Senecio

My regular readers will know how much I love my Senecio scaposus, the Silver Spider:

The white covering on its leaves is very paperlike. It's actually a bit crispy, and peels off the older leaves so they can photosynthesize more efficiently. By contrast, the covering on the leaves of its (also South African) cousin, Senecio haworthii, is more like felt--

It's so soft, it qualifies as an Adorably Fuzzy Plant. It's known as the Woolly Senecio, and likes to grow at between 900 and 1200 meters. Called "tontelbos" in Afrikaans, which means "tinderbush", the felty bits on large plants can be used for tinder. It's yet another wonderful member of a variable and intriguing genus.

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