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Plantidote of the Day 2012-09-13

Kathryn's picture

Mystery Plant

I think these are probably a pretty common annual so I'm hoping we can get a name for them.

Update: h/t to plantidotes consultant insanelysane, these are:

Acmella oleracea

Toothache plant

According to Wikipedia: "...commonly referred to as Spilanthes Extract, is a flowering herb in the plant family Asteraceae, also known as toothache plant or paracress as the leaves and flower heads contain an analgesic agent spilanthol used to numb toothache."

See here.

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insanelysane's picture
Submitted by insanelysane on

This is a fun plant!
It's called the tooth ache plant because the leaves have a slight numbing quality. It is also called the eyeball plant and I like to use it in Halloween planters along with black mondo grass and orange mums. Botanical name: Acmella oleracea..
Really easy from seed.
Thanks for reminding me of this plant.

Submitted by hipparchia on

i'd never seen or heard of this plant until now, but my immediate reaction was those look like eyeballs on stalks! i would love to have this in my front yard!

Kathryn's picture
Submitted by Kathryn on

These are just coolest plants, as a ground cover they are about 6" high with beautiful glossy leaves, and the little eyeballs stand about 12" tall and nod in the wind. I love the halloween planter idea too.

I know mums are great in the fall, and pansies -- anyone else have a favorite for fall color?

insanelysane's picture
Submitted by insanelysane on

http://summerhillseeds.com/spilanthes-ol...

Here's one source for the seeds.
I forgot about this fun plant, but I am going to order some seeds and start a few. They are perennial in zone 10, but I may need to put them inside my hot house for winter, here in zone 9.

twig's picture
Submitted by twig on

What funny little plants, great for a little color in the backyard. I've never seen this one before -- great find, kath!

And thanks for the seed link, insanely -- ordering right now!

insanelysane's picture
Submitted by insanelysane on

http://parkseed.com/pumpkin-on-a-stick/p...

Oh, hey, here's another funny plant. It's an edible eggplant, but is called Pumpkin on a Stick because the little fruits turn orange and look like pumpkins. Google that!

Interesting also because it is an heirloom and that means you can grow from a seed then save some of the little "pumpkins" for the seed to plant the next year!
Makes a nice plant, but beware the spines on the leaves. Works great in a pot that you can add those eyeballs and some black pansies and orange mums. Halloween perfect. ( Too late for this year since from seed to fruit is about 3 months.Plan for next year!)

insanelysane's picture
Submitted by insanelysane on

Yes, I've seen that one too. Can't remember what it is though.

It will come to me...

twig's picture
Submitted by twig on

thanks!! You could easily create a whole Halloween garden -- not you specifically, but someone. Next year!!