There are numerous common names for the devil's backbone. In an effort to describe the blooms, it has been called Redbird Flower, Persian Lady Slipper, and Japanese Poinsettia. Other descriptive monikers for the foliage include the Rick Rack Plant and Jacob's Ladder.
The scientific name for this plant means foot-shaped flower. Devil’s Backbone originated in the American tropics. It makes an outstanding houseplant with its 2-foot tall stems, alternate leaves, and colorful flower-like growth. The leaves are lance-shaped and thick on wiry stems. Watch out for the milky sap coming from the plant - it may be dangerous for some people, so always use gloves when you need to touch it.