Sunday, June 2, 2013

Tradescantia plant

Each time I watch Jamie Oliver talk about organic farming, I think of Mum and her farming.

Mum was into organic farming before the word became popular.

When we were little, we used to collect this Tradescantia plant, chop it up and feed it to our ducklings. We called this plant "Duckling grass." or ARP ZAI CHO.

This grows in my garden, and makes me wish I can rear ducklings in my own back yard, the way Mum did in Borneo. My colleagues told me to catch some at Western Springs.

. Tradescantia grows very fast and ismajor plant pest when it has escaped into bush land, A member of the spiderwort family, tradescantia flumensis is native to South America; its name commemorates the discoverer of the species, John Tradescant, a 16th century English naturalist, gardener, and intrepid plant collector. The succulent green stems and oval leaves of this plant are accompanied by simple white flowers, but no seeds are produced. Instead, the tiniest stem or leaf is capable of sprouting leaves, and forming a new plant which grows rapidly. Tradescantia plants thrive in solid shade and form a dense mat completely inhibiting the survival of native plant seedlings or ferns.

I grew it in my worm farm kit  in school, and it has pushed out the lid. The kids love it.I restarted the kit, the children were surprised they don't need to put the plant into the ground, They just drop it to the soil, and the plants grow.

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