The Mexican fire
plant is closely related to the
. I had never seen this species before it showed up as a weed in
garden, under the wires where the birds perch, of course.
first I thought it might just be a variety of poinsettia with less
on the bracts. But there is a significant difference in the
These are the flowers
of the Mexican fire plant. They
are much smaller than the flowers of poinsettia
, and lack the showy yellow gland. The male flower is smaller,
has the white stamens. The female flower has a star shaped, green
Some show the developing, three lobed fruit.
This is what a
Mexican fireplant looks as it first appears
in my garden as a seedling. Usually I pull them out with the rest
of the weeds. Sometimes I let them grow.
This seedling is a
little older and its leaves are starting
to take on the leaf shape characteristic of the species.
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