Growing wonder of the world plants

Kalanchoe pinnata | Wonder of the world | Leaf of life | Air plant | Bryophyllum pinnatum. Did you know that ‘wonder of the world’ leaf is edible, and that it can be helpful to treat headaches, coughs and congestion? (Notice I say ‘can,’ right?.) I’ve grown, used and munched on this beautiful plant for years, without any side effects.

When the leaf is heated with a lighter hovering about 1/2 inch underneath, the thick, supple and rubbery leaf starts to warm and when it cools to a tolerable temperature and is placed on the forehead, it can alleviate mid aches. Again – not a doctor, but this succulent plant that apparently originated in Madagascar and made its way around the diaspora is well-known throughout generations to be helpful in that way as well as to assist with getting rid of a cough, congestion and to ‘draw’ pain and ‘information’ from inside a bruised area or sipped as a tea infusion.

Having a wonder of the world plant is a like having a natural first-aid kit. Like aloe, it can be used both internally and externally but unlike aloes, wonder of the world has barely any distinguishable taste at all.

A regenerative plant that survives and thrives in most environments, regardless of soil quality and access to sun. When given a porous soil, reasonable sun and lots of love, they excel and brighten the space they’re in shooting forth leaves larger than your hand.

You can grow an entire plant JUST from one leaf.

If you ever manage to find or be given a leaf, set it on a cool counter top or on a window sill, give it a few days, make sure it’s lightly moist (always) and in two-twos you’re gonna see tiny bone-white roots springing around the circumference of the leaf. Once these get to about an inch or so, set them in good soil and watch a whole plant grow! Pick a leaf from that and bless a neighbour.

These plants can grow to 4ft or more. Give them enough space and they’ll do the rest.
known to reduce high blood pressure



I enjoy growing this plant so much, the garden now has an area with a bed of air plants. Check with your doctor before using internally or if you have particularly sensitive skin, ask a professional a question to be sure. For many, the proof is in the plant. Either way, they make beautiful and bright decorative additions to the garden, balcony and home.

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