On a recent trip to Damaraland, Jenny Gardiner from Windhoek and family were driving along a remote track when they saw this strange plant. They didn’t know what it was so she took a photograph. When they got back to Windhoek she mailed it to a friend, Tok Schoeman, who is an expert on Namibian plants. This was his reply: –
“This is no ordinary plant. It’s called elephant’s foot (Adenia pechuelii) and it grows sparsely in the Namib from Walvis Bay to southern Kaokoland. You were very lucky to see one. These plants have an incredible lifespan; the specimen in the photo could easily be more than 100 years old. Like Welwitschia mirabilis, it’s a real survivor”.
Wow. It’s a special feeling to have seen one up close.