Thursday, July 31, 2008

A few more Heatchcote Plants! Tillandsia ionantha, Onc. Sharry Baby orchid, Bromeliads

Going through todays pictures I snapped a few extras of some more bloomers from Heathcote Botanical Gardens. The first is an Onc. Sharry Baby orchid that has 2 full spikes and three new spikes growing. The added bonus about this orchid is its sweet chocolate smell. Next is a cluster of bromeliads growing in the middle of an oak tree that was in the area we were working in today. They have attached themselves to the side of the tree and keep putting out new pups. And the last group are from a Tillandsia ionantha, I think, These are normally small and this 1 is a midsize Tillandsia. But the blooms and leaf colors are the exact same. So here are the extras.

Onc. Sharry Baby

Bromeliads growing in the Middle of the Oak tree in the area we were working in today.
New growth from the cluster of bromeliads.
Tillandsia ionantha I think, it is very large for this species.

Another Day at Heathcote Botanical Gardens!

Another Wednesday and another day volunteering at Heathcote Botanical Garden, Slowly but surly we are making it through the palm walk. Cleaning and removing ferns vines and any stray trees that have sprouted in the ferns. It feels so good to see the progress we are making. This section of the garden is going to be a highlight of the gardens soon. With around 20 palms that are sitting in pots right now it is going to be sweet to finally get this place cleaned and all of those palms placed and planted. Today I snapped a few pictures of some other plants while I was there so these will be included with the befores and afters.
Set 1: Before and After Backside
Set 2: Front side Before and After
Alpinia zurumbet 'Shell Ginger' Bloom
Shell Ginger Flower
Crossandra infundibulformis 'Green Ice Crossandra'
Green Ice Crossandra Flower

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Washingtonia filifera , California Fan Palm Sprouts!

Today I went out to check on a few of the seed bins that I have started recently, and to my suprise I had a bin full of new Washingtonia filifera , or California Fan Palm sprouts. Hands down these have to be the fastest palm seeds to germinate. Back on July 14, I planted around 30 seeds that I had collected from a huge filfera. Here are a few pictures. The first is of the mother tree I collected the seeds from. The next is the bin inside a black plastic bag, and the last are the spouts inside.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Pandanus??? Anybody Know?

Over the weekend on our plant excursion, we came across a large clump of Pandanus???. Not sure what the species is, but as you can see in the pictures this has large barbs running down the sides of the leaves, and also down the middle of the underside of the leaves. It was like a fortress. Trying to get into the clump to snip off a few pieces. I still have holes in my arms. Here are a few pictures. Arron is in a few shots showing how large this Pandanus clump was. When it was all said and done we left with 7 clipping from this clump and you could not even tell we took anything off of the clump.

Monday, July 28, 2008

Variegated Seagrape Air Layer Project

Saturday Aaron and myself went back to the Variegated Sea Grape or Coccoloba uvifera 'Albo-variegata' and came equipped with a kit for air layering a few branches. We began by picking branches around 12", then with the trusty pocketknife we skinned about 3" of the bark off the base of the branch. Then with some water and root stimulator we soaked spaghnum moss, and also added rooting hormone powder to the area that we skinned. Taking the spaghnum moss we packed it around the skinned area. Next we took a piece of plastic and wrapped the branch and spaghnum moss tightly and secured each end closed with twisty ties. Finally we took a black plastic bag and wrapped the branch one more time and sealed bot ends of that with some twisty ties. After about 30 minutes of skinning and wrapping we managed to get 6 branches air layered. Hopefully we will comeback in a few months and have bags full of roots growing off of these branches. Here are the pictures of the Variegated Sea Grape.

Saturday, July 26, 2008

A View of Old Fort Park

Along Indian River Dr close to downtown Fort Pierce is a little park called Old Fort Park. This is the original site of the fort that Fort Pierce is named after. The fort was built in 1838 during the Second Seminole War. The fort was constructed of sabal palm trunks for walls and thatched palm leaves for the roof. Today the park has 100's of Sabal Palms and it also has a fresh water stream that flows into the Indian River. It is thought that this was why the location was selected for the fort. And before the fort was there it is also thought to be a seasonal camp for the Ais Indians who became extint in the 1600's when the Europeans arrived. There is an Indian burial mound that stand 50ft tall at the park, but is cover with dense vegetation making it nearly impossible to see from the road . Here are a few pictures, of the Sabals, the steps that lead up the burial mound, and the last is a fresh water stream that feeds into the Indian River. On the left side of my blog I have a painting from Rick Kelly depicting the fresh water stream and the Indian River name The Old Fort.

Friday, July 25, 2008

Another NOID Orchid Blooming!

I picked this orchid up a while ago and now have flowers. If you can name this one please let me know. I have it potted in a coconut, and hanging outside under the same tree my vandas hang from. It seems to be very happy getting a nice soaking everyday. The flowers are like dancing ladies. Maybe some type of Miltassia . Here are a few

First Coconut Palm Sprout Update!

Her are a few progression pictures of my first Coconut Palm seedling. The first is from back in Jan when I collected a few coconuts from the beach. The next picture was taken on May 28, and the third picture was taken on July 24. Also over the weekend I was pulling weeds over by 20 coconuts that I have managed to collect now and found my second sprout. This is the last picture. It looks like it had a little problem popping out. So I planted it so it hopefully will correct itself.

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Cypress Vine , Ipomoea quamoclit

If you love growing vines, then this is the ideal vine for growing on trellises, arbors or fences. It even can be trained to climb up a string tied to a tree branch or the eaves of your house, but any way you grow Ipomoea quamoclit it requires some training and the ideas are endless. The hummingbirds absolutely love it, butterflies fawn over it and bumble bees help pollinate it! While the flowers are pretty, the vine is very invasive and fast growing. It tends to cover and choke out all the plants near it.

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Tillandsia xerographica

Dubbed the ‘king’ among air plants, Tillandsia xerographica, is a xeric epiphyte that is from the semi-deserts of Guatemala. It is very slow growing, but is easy to take care of. It loves sunshine and will take regular watering as long as the water doesn't stand in rosette, but can stand some drought quite well. Its silvery gray leaves, sometimes almost white, has a tight rosette of leaves ending in spectacular curls. The inflorescence, is on a thick, green stem, from 6 to 15 inches in height, and is densely branched. This Tillandsia xerographica is in bloom right now and is located at Heathcote Botanical Garden if anyone would like to see it.

Some of this Weeks Wildlife Encounters

If you want to view any of the pictures remember to right click and open in a new tab or window, and this saves lots of loading time.

The First 2 pictures are of an unknown caterpillar.
Two ducks hanging out in an Oak Tree.
A Gopher Turtle escaping the sweltering heat of the day in his burrow.

Recently I have had an outbreak of baby lizards running around the back porch. The other night I went to take some pics of this Phal. Gold Coin and I had a new little buddy hanging out.