Fat plants!!

Summary: Fat plants – or often called Succlent plants have surface morphologies quiet different from common plants we are used to seeing. I wondered, what’s on the surface?

Often, walking around I have noticed these nice juicy fat plants. Often termed as Succlent plants. Last time, I picked one up; it has a surface texture that was very shiny has if it has surface topography quiet different from most plants.


1. Cut and mount   on plastic/tape slide. Since the plant leaves are so thick, you would have to scratch the top surface of the leaf with something blunt – like a broken pencil.

2. Mount the slide,  one for the top surface and one of the side view of the leaf.

3. I used my log mag Foldscope with iPhone 5 to take images.

imageFoldscope low mag, 140X, with iPhone 5 in digital zoom. Here you can see leaf stomata. I am perplexed with why I get a high contrast in one the stomata while the other one seems empty (top corner). The green pigment is chlorophyll. Also visible are plant cell walls.

imageZoomed out image, shows a spicule like object everywhere on the surface. I also observed an array of very large holes (a grid pattern of holes); which I am still trying to figure out. I will be posting more high mag lens images soon. 


Conclusions and Next steps: 

I was able to see some usual (stomata, with clear view of guard cells); but also some highly unusual structures. I am going to get back to imaging this sample; and look carefully at the grid like structure I observed. It really took me by surprise, and I have a theory for why I might see another layer of cells on the surface. I will test this on other “fat plants” as well to see how generic this observation is.

4 Comments Add yours

  1. Manu Prakash says:

    This is a test comment.

  2. tzapadka says:

    Wow! I just got my foldscope in the mail and I cannot wait to look at all types of cells with such ease! I still have to hook up my phone camera but I am sure that I will be very pleased wth my findings.

  3. I think everyone could learn a bit from your own experience.

  4. Ronak Hati says:

    The spicule like thing might just be a raphide!

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