Primitive Plant Party

Gunnera chilensis/tinctoria – Chilean Rhubarb

After Master Gardening class we hit up the Primitive Plant Garden at SF Botanical Gardens.  Random bit of Gunnera info from Wikipedia, “In nature, all Gunnera plants form a symbiosis with a nitrogen-fixing cyanobacteria (algae), thought to be exclusively Nostoc punctiforme. The bacteria enter the plant via glands found at the base of each leaf stalk[1] and initiate an intracellular symbiosis which is thought to provide the plant with fixed nitrogen in return for fixed carbon for the bacterium.” Cool stuff. Check out our post about our new Gunnera baby.

Araucaria heterophylla – Norfolk Island Pine

We can’t get enough of the ancient Araucariaceae family of cool trees. They’re all so darn cool.

Equisetum scirpoides – Dwarf Scouringrush

Teeny weeny baby Equisetum. A couple months ago we rescued this guy’s big brother Equisetum hyemale on the curb. We’ve talked about creating a bog garden in a wine barrel for our small collection of water loving plants.

Mahonia lomariifolia

I wasn’t able to find any info online to confirm that this is in fact a primitive plant, but looks great with the other ancients. I did find out that it’s native to Burma.

Cycas revoluta – Sago Palm

You can’t have an ancient plant garden without a cycad or two(they’re not true palms). These guys have been around for over 150 million years. Watch out if you have dogs. Their seeds are extremely poisonous, and based on what I’ve read seem to scream, “please chew on me, I’m a toy”.

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