The scattered white tubercles on the leaves of Aristaloe aristata vary in size and shape. They even form meandering rows like soldiers on the first morning of boot camp.
The soft white marginal teeth on the leaves have less chance of deviation, apart from size and direction. Like many natural phenomena of similar appearance, superficially they appear regular or identical, but closer inspection uncovers variability.
Leaf tips are often slightly desiccated, the dry remains twisting randomly, even in a specimen that does not want. The smallest signs of mortality are ever-present in all burgeoning life. The specific name aristata meaning bearded or awned may recognise either these leaf tips, the marginal teeth or the white stubble on the skin.
Leaf colour is green in the central parts on most leaves in picture. Near the tips a transition to brown has come about, while the newly exposed basal sections are still pale to whitish. Leaf colour varies with age and environmental conditions, as does surface colour in the natural stages of many living things, including skin colour in people.
The bulge of the convex upper leaf surfaces varies with prosperity. This plant lives well but artificially in cultivation, receiving an ample share of the fat of the land as Joseph promised his brothers if they would come to live in Egypt.
Home is the difference between habitat and hothouse, natural vicissitudes versus boundless prosperity. But no fleshpot remains full, irrespective of where one goes.
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