The Lifesaver Plant | #3

Every day I care for thousands of plants, look at hundreds of flowers, fruits, leaves and seeds, none of which are more striking than the odd little flower of Huernia Zebrina. Appropriately nicknamed the lifesaver plant, due to the flowers resemblance to a life preserver one may find on a ship (or the popular candy one may find in a grocery store), it is one of the smallest plants in the desert house. But do not let the small stature of the lifesaver plant fool you, its striking coloration and awful smell makes it stand out amongst the rest.

Why is it so colorful, oddly patterned, and smells so bad? One word; pollination! The bright colors, and dreadful smell of roadkill on a hot day which it emits, are a cleaver tactic this distant relative of milkweed uses to attract flies in order to successfully reproduce.

So, keep your eyes open, for oftentimes in life the most interesting things come in the tiniest of packages.

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