What is the plant
Jatropha podagrica is a succulent plant in the family Euphorbiaceae. It is native to the tropical Americas but is grown as an ornamental plant in many parts of the world due to its unusual appearance.
Podagrica means “swollen foot,” fitting for this swollen succulent looking plant. It features a swollen “trunk” that is topped with several large fig-shaped leaves. Besides the swollen stem, it produces bright red flowers throughout the year. The jatropha podagrica is incredibly toxic, so special care is needed when dealing with this plant. It also has quite a few different common names including Bottle plant, Bottleplant shrub, Gout plant, Buddha belly plant, Guatemalan rhubarb and Gout stick. Buddha plants can reach several feet tall. When it reaches full height, the swollen stem resembles a trunk, making the plant look more like a small tree with a sparse crown containing a few large leaves. The gout plant is a slow growing plant. The stem growing from the ground often has several smaller stems sprouting from the top that produce clusters of flowers. The plant Jatropha podagrica doesn’t always bloom, especially when grown indoors.
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