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GENUS: Ibicella

Sticky-leavead (and stemmed and flowered,) annual with fleshy geranium-like leaves and bearing spiky wooden seed pods, quite closely related to the genus Proboscidea. Originally from Brazil, Ibicella has spread around the tropics and subtropics, posing a serious problem to livestock, who are hobbled or killed by the seedpods that, once trodden on, become embedded in the ankles.

SPECIES: A. ibicella - Common Name: Unicorn Plant - Distribution: pan-subtropical weed originally Brazil

A strange sp., believed by some authorities to secrete digestive enzymes to digest its prey, which are most often small gnats and mosquitos. The flowers are orange-spotted yellow, and unscented, and the seedpods are less dramatic than Proboscidea spp. Cultivation: cactus compost or 1:1 houseplant compost:grit, kept moist. Full sun, use as large a pot as possible to allow the plant to spread (up to 8 feet if started early (February,) from seed and kept hot!) Feed fortnightly. Can be grown in a fertile, well-drained garden border after the frosts have gone.


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