November 9th, 2020
Jatropha Podagrica, the 'Buddha's Belly' Plant
This week’s plant features Jatropha Podagrica [JAT-roh-fuh pod-AG-ree-kuh] aka Buddha’s Belly, Gout Plant, Purging Nut, and Guatemalan Rhubarb. It is native to the tropical Americas. This plant is commonly known for its thick caudex and beautiful large green leaves. It really does look like a large potato with leaves.
It belongs to the Euphorbia (Euphorbicae) family which makes it poisonous (sorry furry friends). This plant is easy to care for as long as you let it dry out between watering. Let the soil become completely dry before watering again. It needs little to no water during winter months when it goes dormant. Something to keep in mind when fall hits going into the winter it is likely to drop its leaves.
Fear not! The leaves and flowers will return. It is going to want a fast, well-draining soil just like Cacti. Buddha's Belly like a bright lit room preferably a south facing window. When there are new leaves emerging bring back the plant from direct sun to avoid any potential burning of the new leaves.
Its large caudex, showy leaves, and colorful flowers make for an interesting houseplant. The tri-lobbed leaves and neon pink flowers are something from another planet! Truly a must see. I picked one of these up right away – it’s just so funky and cute. Another added to the collection!
If you are reading this and thinking ‘where I can buy one of these flowering potatoes?!’ We currently carry Buddha's Belly in 6" pots here in the greenhouse. If you have any further questions about the Bhudda Belly Plant, or other houseplants, feel free to reach out to us by phone, Instagram, or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.