For the identification of insects and other fauna and flora of South Africa: please click on the following links:
Insects and related species: Antlions - Ants - Bees - Beetles - Bugs - Butterflies, Moths and Caterpillars - Centipedes and Millipedes - Cockroaches - Crickets - Dragonflies and Damselflies - Grasshoppers and Katydids - Mantis - Stick Insects - Ticks and Mites - Wasps - Woodlice
Plants, Trees, Flowers: (Note: Unless plants fall into a specific species such as Cacti, they have been classified by their flower colour to make them easier to find) Bonsai - Cacti, Succulents, Aloes, Euplorbia - Ferns and Cycads - Flowers - Fungi, Lichen and Moss - Grass - Trees
Animals, Birds, Reptiles etc.: Animals, Birds, Fish and Crabs - Frogs - Lizards - Scorpions - Snails and Slugs - Snakes - Spiders - Tortoise, Turtles and Terrapins - Whipscorpions
Other photography: Aeroplanes - Cars and Bikes - Travel - Sunrise - Water drops/falls - Sudwala and Sterkfontein Caves etc.

Sunday, August 18, 2013

Money Plant (Plectranthus verticillatus)

Family Lamiaceae
Aromatic soft herbs 100–305 mm tall with a spread of about 600 mm. The often glossy, soft, round to obovate leaves are light to dark green above, sometimes deep purple below, semi-succulent (64–90 mm across) with crenate to broadly-toothed margins borne on rectangular stems. Stems are short, strigose (short rough hairs pointed in the same direction).

 White, pale mauve, or pale pink flowers appear sporadically throughout the year in gardens but more abundantly in spring and late autumn. Inflorescence terminal, racemose, verticillate (whorled), 50–260 mm long, often with paired side branches (verticillasters) at the base. Calyx 3 mm long enlarging to 5 mm. Corolla 10–25 mm long, white, often speckled; tube 4–16 mm long, straight, laterally compressed, 2–3 mm broad, almost linear; base slightly saccate. Nutlets 1 mm long, brownish.
Distribution and habitat
Abundant in its native habitat in frost-free areas along forest margins, in woodland, kloof forest and scrub forest from Knysna through KwaZulu-Natal to Limpopo. Does not tolerate frost.

Uses and cultural aspects:
P. verticillatus is a nursery favourite in warmer areas of the world. A number of commercial cultivars, including several variegated forms, have been developed here and overseas: ‘Barberton', ‘Blyde', ‘Eureka', ‘Freckles', ‘Gossip', ‘Malelaan', ‘Money Maker', ‘Pink Surprise', and ‘Ubombo'.