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The Apostle Plant or Walking Iris (Neomarica Caerulea)

Updated on February 5, 2013
Apostle Plant
Apostle Plant | Source
Apostle Plant
Apostle Plant | Source
Apostle Plant flower stalk
Apostle Plant flower stalk | Source

A little over a year ago, my mother gave me 2 little spikes in a tiny bit of dirt and told me that if I planted this tiny plant, it would keep growing leaves or spikes and when it grew 12 separate leaves, it would then flower. She called it an “Apostle Plant”. This plant is so named “Apostle Plant” due to the belief that it will not flower until it has at least 12 leaves, the same number of apostles of Jesus Christ. I was so intrigued by this plant and the story behind it, that I took it home, planted it in its own special pot, put in a sunny window and waited….and waited….and waited, getting very excited with the growth of each new leaf. Just recently, and with much exuberance on my part, I have observed that a flower stalk has grown up out of the middle of the plant, even though my plant currently only has 10 leaves - the 2 original leaves turned brown and disappeared –must have been my plant’s Judas’! In a short time, my plant will flower, creating little blue, blue and white or multicolored iris blossoms – the weight of the blossoms will then cause the stalk to bend over and after the blooms die off, it will grow new “plantlets” that will either take root in the ground or if it is in a pot, “walk” away from the parent plant. These plantlets can then be removed from the parent plant and repotted to create more individual plants – kind of like the apostles spreading the gospel of Christ, thereby creating new followers and spreading the gospel to even more. What a beautifully symbolic expression of Jesus and his disciples experienced through the natural growth of a simple, but amazing, little plant.

To find out more about the Apostle Plant, check out these informative websites:

When my plant blooms, I will post a new picture of the flowers and then another when the plantlets begin to grow. In the meantime, you can see other pictures of these beautiful plants on the above websites I posted.


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    • Larry Rankin profile image

      Larry Rankin 2 years ago from Oklahoma

      Very interesting overview of this plant.

    • sallieannluvslife profile image

      sallieannluvslife 3 years ago from Eastern Shore

      Thanks for your comment, faythef! If you find someone with one of these plants, they have shoots that create whole new plants and they are very easy to cut off and plant...actually my plant had so many that I ended up with 4 new plants and didn't know what to do with them all...I ended up leaving most of them outside in the weather and they died. :(

    • faythef profile image

      Faythe Payne 3 years ago from USA

      I have I have never heard of this plant. But I love the story behind it ..and now I am on the search for one of my own..thank you for sharing

    • sallieannluvslife profile image

      sallieannluvslife 5 years ago from Eastern Shore

      Hi April!

      It is getting very close to blooming, but not quite yet! I moved it to another window so it could get a little more warmth from the sun, so hopefully it won't be long now! Have a great day and thanks for the comment. :)

    • April Reynolds profile image

      April Reynolds 5 years ago from Arizona

      I guess it counted the leaves that died. Very interesting plant. Did it flower yet?