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Jackal Food (Hydnora africana)
Jackal Food (Hydnora africana)

Jackal Food (Hydnora africana)

This parasitic plant is perhaps the most bizarre plant in the world and occurs with sharp teeth in Super Mario. But it isn’t a carnivorous plant. The main part of the plant grows under the ground, where it makes contact with the roots of the host plant: Euphorbia caput-medusae. That way it can ingest the most important n.. Read more
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This parasitic plant is perhaps the most bizarre plant in the world and occurs with sharp teeth in Super Mario. But it isn’t a carnivorous plant. The main part of the plant grows under the ground, where it makes contact with the roots of the host plant: Euphorbia caput-medusae. That way it can ingest the most important nutrients without any effort.
Only the distinct inflorescence appears above ground. The flowers are pollinated by beetles that are attracted by the smell of the flower. Inside, hairs prevent the beetle to crawl out again, but drive it towards the stamens so it can cover them with pollen. After, somewhat deeper into the flower the beetles can leave again. They eventually crawl along the stigmas and thus ensure fertilization of the flower. 

It can be difficult to cultivate these species. There is at least one succesful story that can be found via this link: http://www.botany.org/parasitic_plants/Hydnora_africana.php If you are successful, please let us know!

Sowing description: In the link above you can read more about the germination. The host plant for this species is Euphorbia caput-medusae. In the webshop you can find seeds of this species too. Good luck! 

Family: Aristolochiaceae
Scientific name: Hydnora africana
Common name: Jackal Food
Native to: South Africa

Sowing time: Whole year 
Difficulty: Challenging
Minimum temperature: 15 degrees Celsius

Photo: Bihrmann.com

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