What's looking exotic in 2019

Discussion in 'Tropical Gardening' started by PeterS, Jan 20, 2019.

  1. PeterS

    PeterS Total Gardener

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    Hi Strongy - I have never had a Megaspekasma (though I would love to have one - if I had the space). But I did see them in Costa Rica. Yours is a beaut.

    aaa.jpg
    What I still have, and its in flower now is Porphyrocoma pohliana, which I grew from seed. Its too dark for a photo now, so the picture above is from the internet. I never thought about how similar they are - both being members of the Acanthus family. The difference is that Porphyrocoma is no more than six inches tall. Well remembered.

    And thanks for the name Leucadendron. I assumed the other plant was a Protea, but I had no idea which.

    Hi Mike - I think the answer to what people grow comes down to what climate/conditions they can offer. For most people, and for me until relatively recently, the best is a frost free greenhouse, which allows a limited number of tropical plants.

    I am lucky, I had a conservatory built at the bottom of the garden, where it gets the most sun. Really, its an expensive greenhouse. The first year or two I just kept it frost free over the winter, but the temperature has crept up as I realised I could keep more exotical tropicals with higher winter temperatures. Currently I am heating it to 18C over winter, and also keeping high humidity especially in the summer. This allows me to keep such things as Heliconias, which need a minimum of about 16C, and other members of the ginger order that love heat and humidity. However the humidity means that I can't keep tropical woody plants.

    The other factor is what you can buy. I have noticed that more and more exotic plants are now being offered for sale in the UK. For instance, three years ago there was not a single supplier of Heliconia in the UK. Now you can buy them in Morrison's. :rolleyespink:

    Hi LongK - what a lovely Plectranthus.
     
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    • strongylodon

      strongylodon Old Member

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      @PeterS I must have got the two confused as it was some time ago!!!:rolleyespink:
       
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      • PeterS

        PeterS Total Gardener

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        Hi Strongy. I think the two are very easy to confuse, if you only see a picture that doesn't give any impression of size. I am only realising now how similar they are.The have a lot in common being both from Brazil and both members of the Acanthus family.
         
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        • PeterS

          PeterS Total Gardener

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          2019_10110001.JPG
          Not a lot in flower now, but above on the left is Asarina erubescens. On the right Justicia carnea, which I keep deadheading and it has come back into flower about 5 times this year.

          2019_10110002.JPG
          Heliconia psitticorum also comes back into flower at odd intervals.

          2019_10110003.JPG
          I think this is a vriesea. The red bits are bracts rather than the flowers, but it has been like that for months. I probably got it last year, so I am pleased to see it come back into flower this year. Behind is an ornamental Asparagus

          2019_10110004.JPG
          The Shrimp Plant is now called Justicia brandgeana.
           
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          • PeterS

            PeterS Total Gardener

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            I get the feeling that many tropical plants don't have a defined flowering period. In fact in tropical parts of the world I believe that many plants can flower for almost 12 months of the year.
            2019_10310003.JPG
            I currently have a couple of different coloured Bougainvilleas with some flower.

            2019_10310004.JPG
            Anthurium ellipticum has been in flower for ages. Yes, that sad purple spike is the flower - its not as colourful as the Anthuriums I can buy in Morrisons.:rolleyespink:

            2019_10310005.JPG
            Thunbergia battiscombeii has just produced another flower.

            2019_10310006.JPG
            And Heliconia psitticorum is doing its own thing again.

            2019_10310009.JPG
            I have now dug up all my tropicals that were outside for the summer, so my conservatory is a bit more crowded.
             
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            • stephenprudence

              stephenprudence GC Weather Guru

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              IMG_20191108_155802~2.jpg Good old Brugmansia sanguinea saving its best right til the last second before frosts come
               
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              • pete

                pete Growing a bit of this and a bit of that....

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                [QUOTE="stephenprudence, post: 1233982, member: 6525 Good old Brugmansia sanguinea saving its best right til the last second before frosts come[/QUOTE]
                They always do, early spring or autumn never seem to flower in summer.
                 
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                • Victoria

                  Victoria Lover of Exotic Flora

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                  Certainly true here Peter.
                  :smile:
                   
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                  • PeterS

                    PeterS Total Gardener

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                    That's fabulous Stephen. I am amazed it has flowered outside as early as this. In my experience, it has only flowered for me over the winter, inside.
                     
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                    • pete

                      pete Growing a bit of this and a bit of that....

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                      Regarding tropical plants, I just have a feeling that some don't like our very long summer days, it's not all about warmth:biggrin:
                       
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                      • JWK

                        JWK Gardener

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                        It has been a very poor season for me, my Cannas were at least 4 or 5 weeks behind normal same with the Brugs. Whilst some others made up for it mostly it took until October before it got into it's stride.
                         
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                        • JWK

                          JWK Gardener

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                          I took these on 1st Nov:
                          IMG_20191101_163007229_BURST001.jpg

                          IMG_20191101_163109218.jpg

                          IMG_20191101_163147977.jpg

                          One of the exceptions, the passion flower has been exceptional; this year:
                          IMG_20191101_163141811.jpg
                           
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                          • PeterS

                            PeterS Total Gardener

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                            Pete - that's a good point.

                            John - what a lovely wild sight in your top photo. Are you really sure it is in the UK.:smile:
                             
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                            • CarolineL

                              CarolineL Super Gardener

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                              @JWK agreed - fantastic pictures. And that really interesting sculpture too - have you a better picture of it please?
                               
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                              • pete

                                pete Growing a bit of this and a bit of that....

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                                I'm guessing you mean the gnome bottom right hand corner, last pic.:biggrin::biggrin::biggrin:
                                 
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