Like other plant species, the foliage closes during darkenss and reopens in light. Unlike other plant species, the tickle plant also closes and droops under other stimuli such as touching, warming, blowing, or shaking. It is known how this occurs (cells lose turgor pressure) but not why it occurs. Scientists think it could be the plant's defense mechanism to scare away predators, or to shake off insects. Watch this musical video to see the effects of movement on the plant, and how quickly it recovers to it's normal shape.
A fun gift idea for kids is a complete kit to grow and 'tickle' this unusual plant. Complete with seeds, pods, and even it's own greenhouse, the TickleMe Plant can provide education and fun for kids and adults...I'm ordering one myself for the kid in me.
So if you don't have somenoe to tickle you, or a dog or cat or hampster to tickle, maybe you'd like a plant to tickle. We'd love to hear your thoughts on this interesting plant.
~Peggy, Garden Media Group