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Plantidote of the Day 2011-11-08

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kalanchoe tomentosa

Kalanchoe tomentosa "Chocolate Soldier'

Teddy bear cactus, panda plant, pussy ears

Welcome to cute plant day! I swore I would never buy another living thing at one of those giant hardware stores, but one look at this fuzzy little guy and ... well, you can see how that worked out. The leaves are as soft as velvet to the touch, and the plant needs almost no water. In fact, kalanchoes seem to thrive on neglect, making this quite possibly the perfect plant.

For outdoor gardens, kalanchoes like Zones 9 and 10 best. But if you have a window with bright light, this plant can be grown indoors, too. Some kalanchoes bloom and I've read that the flowers on this type are fuzzy little bell-shaped things -- sweet! Unfortunately, I have not seen this in person. Yet. Keep your fingers crossed ....

Readers, please send twig ( images and stories for the ongoing Plantidote of the Day series. In exchange, you'll win undying fame in the form of a hat tip! Plants growing in your garden, your house, or neighbor's yard, plants from the forest or farmers' market, plants you preserved, plants you prepared (wine; cider; tea; dried beans), plants you harvested (grains; chanterelles), plants you picked (flowers), plants you dried (herbs), plants you covet or hope to grow someday. Herbal remedies, propagation tips, new varieties, etc.. And if you can, include some solid detail about the plant, too -- a story, the genus and species, or where you got the seeds, or the recipe, or your grandmother gave it to you. Or challenge us with a "Name That Plant" mystery entry ... And please feel free to add corrections and additional information in the comments.

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