Desert Rose

I thought it would be nice to feature random plants you can find in Singapore. I’m under the impression that your average Singaporean under 50 wouldn’t even be able to identify 5 common plants that they see everyday, unless they have a specific interest in plants. (If my impression is wrong though, feel free to correct me! I’d be glad to be wrong. :D) I think that’s kinda sad, this stuff should be part of our general knowledge.

Not that I’m totally guiltless and an expert on plants. I probably couldn’t identify all the plants in my mum’s garden, so I guess that’s a good place as any to start. From my garden:


Adenium Obesum, common name desert rose or impala lily.

It’s native not to Singapore but Africa. The base of the stem tends to be quite thick (with stored water) and this is called the caudex. I remember a lecturer saying that the Chinese like this plant because of it’s fat stems, which symbolise prosperity, haha. The sap is milky and poisonous (to protect it’s water store!), so if you see white stuff, don’t touch!

Searching on google images shows desert rose plants with HUGEEEE caudex(es?). Pretty cool. I’ve never seen anything close to those in Singapore though, so it’s probably a different subspecies. Or maybe it’s simply because those in Singapore have no need to store so much water haha.

They don’t really look like roses, but have a really awesome vibrant pink colour. Pretty! x)

Photography by me, border by shoe-fly on DeviantArt.