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Welcome to My Little Garden
Welcome to My Little Garden

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Tropical Garden, Batu Caves, Malaysia
Gardening is part of my life and I want to share that portion of my zeal and joy with you. These are my thoughts, my experiences and life work. I hope it enrich and add value to you too.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Basket Plant growing Wild. (Callisia fragrans)

I often thought of skipping this plant as its not so interesting and do not have vibrant colours which seek. Nevertheless, why waste it as I thought of doing some collecting of these and pass them to my friends who are very much interested in having indoor plants.

I did place this plant in my bathroom for few months and it did very well (lacking much of light and sometimes water,as I forgot to water them) I realise that this one is very hardy and may able to take much abuse as over watering or neglect of watering. (very low maintenance)

They do change the texture of the leaves based on the water intake.
Soft leaves when there is good watering and hard leathery leaves when water is scare.

They can become leggy and the roots may start to sprout in between the leaf segments. Its best to keep the plant short & tidy as they look better in hanging basket. This plant grows horizontally.

They also put out runners (stolons) which trails by the side of the main stalk (they look cute though like litte rosettes) I have not seen them flowered. (none with me or with other gardens) I guess they need some special treatment (climate) for flowering. They don't need deep pots for planting as they have very little root system.

Most of my office mates got confused these with Corn Tree Plant. (Dracaena fragrans )
This one had a hard columnar stalk and put out showy rosettes of leaf similar to this Basket Plant. In some types, there is a yellow strip at the new leaves. Very often these are placed as indoor potted plants and they are slow growing.

They also look very much like a Bromeliad and both plants can retain water at their crowns. So be careful when watering as you don't want mosquito's to breed on these plants. Infact its also known as False Bromeliad.

There is another thing. I often wondered whether if there is two types. One which is totally green and another looked very much streaked (finely striped) I found that both the plain & streaked comes from the same plant. I guess the streaks are not stable as they do turn colours in their enviorment. (but its my only guess)
I had a streak which turned dark green when placed indoors.

The pictures below are both plain & streak types found in an abandon area. Someone had pruned & dumped their excess plants here and they seemed to be thriving well.


  1. James, this sounds like a good plant for the indoor. I like the colour green, makes the indoor environment look clean and nice. Have a restful evening!

  2. As long as there are sufficient light (window side, etc) I think they will manage just fine.

  3. still it is without flowers?

  4. hi guys i agree on your ideas about this post . like James said it don't matters as long there is sunlight and enough water to grew this plants . i have my own idea on where this plants can be place . i think this fits on my path way aisle . very nice isn't it . it gives attraction to the aisle at the same attraction with my garden wind spinners gives . very impressive . i hope that this help thank you and have a nice day !

  5. Callisia Fragrans Family Doctor Plant


  6. this plant is VERY invasive, it has a long stalk with little flowers growing up the stalk, mostly in winter, it's roots are shallow, but, it's really a pest.

  7. This plant is very invasive, it has shallow roots, that go everywhere, has a long stalk with tiny white flowers in the winter. I'm Gladys from Puerto Rico in the Caribbean.

  8. Hi Gladys
    Somehow - I find this plant is very hardy and is able to take all the abuse (lack of water, lack or over lighting & also the lack of planting medium)
    I would recommend it to those who have no time to garden. It is best planted on hanging pots as to deter it from becoming invasive.
    Thanks for sharing your comment.

  9. How often can I trim or prune this plant? It has taken over my whole yard! and the plant's "stalk" just grew to be 1 meter long. Can I chop them down or will the kill the plant?

    1. I would suggest you replant the crown. The pruned portion below is very un-attractive. You will only have a stubble and it might take quite a lot time for it to regrow back.


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