Welwitschia mirabilis – The versatile plant: It is one of the greatest admirations that Nature has offered to humanity

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Welwitschia mirabilis is a plant and is one of the greatest admirations that Nature has offered to humanity. It was given this name as it was discovered by the Austrian botanist, explorer, and medical doctor Friedrich Welwitsch in 1859 in the Namib Desert of Southern Angola.

This particular plant is unique. It is considered as the most resistant plant across the globe. It is almost two meters high and eight meters wide, and its duration is estimated to be amazingly 400 to 1500 years. Even if there is no rainfall for five consecutive years, this plant can maintain its survival.

The appearance of the Welwitschia mirabilis is quite weird. It consists of two large leaves and a very strong stem with roots, hence making it look like a sci-fi alien. Also known as Onyanga which means onion of the desert, this plant has been claimed to be tasty as well. It can be eaten either raw or baked in hot ashes.

Even the seeds of this amazing plant, which can be bought from specialty seed dealers, germinate very quickly. Its germination displays orthodox seeds behaviour. In short, it confirms that the Welwitschia mirabilis can be stored for long periods of time at an appropriately low temperature and humidity.

Low water concentration is naturally developed as the Welwitschia seeds ripen. Seeds obtained from the botanic or other cultivated sources are much cleaner and have fewer tendencies to decay.

The following factors have to be considered when growing Welwitschia:

  1. The plant depends a great deal on extra humidity.
  2. It is more appropriate to use a sandy mixture.
  3. It should be watered more regularly.
  4. It is equally required to use sterilized soil.

Welwitschia mirabilis is a comparatively disease-free plant. The only precaution that should be taken is that it should be watered with a fungicide. Malasol is an appropriate insecticide that can be used to control any whatsoever infection.