Jade plant Facts

Jade plant Facts
Jade plant is bushy, succulent plant that belongs to the stonecrop family. It originates from South Africa, but it can be found in temperate regions all over the world today. Jade plant inhabits arid regions and grows surrounded with various succulent plants, euphorbia and aloes. It tolerate strong winds, drought and grazing, but requires plenty of sun for the successful growth and development. Jade plant is very popular in horticulture because of its interesting morphology and easy care. It is frequently cultivated in the gravel gardens, rockeries and pots.
Interesting Jade plant Facts:
Jade plant has thick, multi-branched stem with short, stubby branches. It can reach 3 to 10 feet in height.
Stem of jade plant stem is barky and gnarled and it creates impression of great age. Old bark peels in horizontal strips.
Jade plant develops oval, spoon-shaped, fleshy leaves. They are shiny and dark green colored, sometimes with reddish edges. Some varieties of jade plant have leaves with white and pink stripes. Leaves grow in opposite pairs and form clusters at the end of the branches.
Jade plant produces white or light pink, star-shaped flowers arranged in tight, round clusters.
Jade plant blooms during the winter and spring. Flowers emit sweet scent which attracts bees, flies, wasps and butterflies, main pollinators of this plant.
Fruit of jade plant is small capsule filled with miniature seed.
Jade plant propagates via seed and stem and leaf cuttings. Wind plays important role in dispersal of the seed in the wild.
Jade plant is named after jade-like, dark green color of the leaves.
Jade plant can survive prolonged periods of drought due to ability to store water in the leaves, stem and root.
Most plants open their stomata (small pores on the surface of the leaves) during the day to absorb carbon dioxide which is (together with water and light) used for the synthesis of sugar in the process called photosynthesis. In order to preserve water, jade plant keeps its stomata closed during the day and opens them during the night. Collected carbon dioxide is stored in the body in the form of organic crassulacean acids until the morning, when it is converted back to carbon dioxide and used for the process of photosynthesis.
Tortoises like to eat leaves of jade plant. Many species of wasp build nest on the stem of this plant.
Root of jade plant is part of diet of many African tribes.
Leaves of jade plant are used in treatment of diarrhea and epilepsy and for the purification of the body.
In Germany, USA and Far East, jade plant is often kept in the pots due to belief that it ensures luck with money (hence the nickname "money plant").
Jade plant is perennial plant (life span: more than 2 years).

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