June 20, 2023

BrianT_epod_Kalanchoe (1)

BrianT_epod_Kalanchoe Flowers (1)

PhotographerBrian Toycen 

Summary AuthorBrian Toycen      

Shown above is a flowering plant known as Kalanchoe gastonis-bonnieri, a species in the family Crassulaceae. The plant name honors Dr. Gaston Bonnier, a famous French botanist. Often called “donkey ear plants" since their leaves resemble the shape of a donkey's ear.

Under ideal growing conditions, donkey ears grow rapidly, from 12″ to 18″ inches (0.30 to 0.45 meters) tall. The thick ovate-lanceolate leaves have epicuticular wax – a waxy white covering – which makes the plant appear gray-green with maroon-brown blotches. Small plantlets form on the side of the leaf margin and can be easily planted to grow more plants.

I had been growing this plant for two years when it bloomed this past winter. It had a bloom stalk when I moved it indoors in November. The blooms opened slowly over several weeks starting in the end of December – blooming ended in the middle of February. The blooms had a very faint sweet smell. I don’t think this Kalanchoe will survive as it’s slowly turning brown.  However, I have rooted several plantlets so in a way it will live on. Photos taken from my home in Amarillo, Texas on January 7, 2023.

Photo details: Both pictures taken with a Canon EOS 80D.

Kalanchoe settings: Lens 18 to 200 mm; f/5.6; exposure time 1/100 seconds; ISO 100; Exp. Bias +0.7 step; focal length 18 mm.

Kalanchoe Flowers settings: Lens 35mm with macro; f/2.; exposure time 1/400 second; ISO 100; Exp. Bias +0.3 step.


Amarillo, Texas Coordinates: 35.2220 -101.8313

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