Thursday, September 06, 2007

Everybody loves a freak...and that's what I'd call this flower! This is Spilanthes oleracea, a.k.a. "toothache plant" or "eyeball flower"...the eyeball thing is fairly obvious, but the toothache reference is because you can chew on the fresh or dried flower, or take the extract to help deaden pain from a tooth until you can visit the dentist. It is not only topically anesthetic for gums and teeth, but it is also bacteriostatic, helping to fight tooth decay. (I just thought it looked cool.) So imagine my surprise when I noticed this flower...looks like three flower buds all emerged together. But things got even more interesting when I backed up a bit for another look..... .....what a cute little face! Now this is my kind of freak!


Laurie & Chris said...

I think it might be looking at you !! LOL!! I have never seen or heard of this plant.

Ki said...

Oh, oh! Feed me! FEED MEEEE!

mmw said...

So, you been chewin leaves?

chuck b. said...

You always have interesting plants. 750 seeds for $.99 at Thomson Morgan. Did you get them there? Do they actually count out 750 seeds? Do you have any extra? :)

Bob said...

I've seen these before, they are really cool. I'm glad you shared them. And thanks for the background info. I'll have to grow some next year for my fall pots.
Take care Lisa, Bob :)

funtimehappygardenexplosion said...

dear lisa,

this plant is my HERO! I wonder, could you ask people to take pictures with these buds over their eyes?

I LOVE your garden.


Annie in Austin said...

This is a new one for me, too, Lisa. That triple-wide Toothache flower is weird, but even the normal flowers are pretty odd! This post proves a gardener has to be there to catch the good stuff.

Annie at the Transplantable Rose

lisa said...

Laurie & Chris-Yea, I saw it at the nursery, and thought I'd try it.


Mmw-Not yet, but I am curious...just kinda chicken, too.

Chuck-Actually, I found this at a local nursery...but I'm glad you found the seed source. To be honest, I haven't seen this thing produce any seeds yet, either. (I doubt that they count out 750 seeds, BTW.)

Bob-I've enjoyed this a lot, so I'll likely grow another next year as well.

Funtime-Heh...that's a funny idea, sounds better than pennies over the eyes!

Annie-I like the weirdness factor for sure!

Kylee said...

Now that's just hilarious. I'm glad you captured this fun in your garden on media. It's stuff like this that makes gardening even more fun that it is in the first place! Garden surprises! And God DOES have a sense of humor. :-)

lisa said...

Kylee-Thank you! I agree...much as I try to grow things to enjoy, the stuff that "just happens" is so often better.

Yolanda Elizabet said...

Uh-oh another mutant from outer space! ;-) The Eyeball flower, coming to a garden near you soon! Scary!