A world traveller in your own back garden

The plant’s name, Kalanchoë, is a Latinised version of the Chinese word kalan chau. China, as well as Madagascar and southern and south eastern Africa, are where the Kalanchoë was discovered growing in the wild. From there, this plant was taken to Paris where it created quite a stir: so small, so nice, so colourful. It also attracted the attention of Robert Blossfeld, a German seed trader who saw it as a great commercial opportunity even back then. In 1932, he introduced Kalanchoë ‘Blossfeldiana’ as a houseplant, but it would be another fifty years before the plant would make its international breakthrough. When it came, it was predominantly due to the efforts of American, German, Danish and Dutch plant breeders. Today, Dutch growers and wholesalers provide your garden centre, market and florist with an extensive supply of these plants in many varieties for use indoors and outdoors.