Abies balsamea 'Nana'

Abies balsamea 'Nana'

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

The start of something new...

Hello, I am a life-long gardener and plant-crazed maniac, trying my hand at blogging for the first time. I'm still figuring things out, so try to be patient with me. The purpose of this blog is to share my exploits in the realm of gardening. I am still gauging the time and effort that I can allocate to this project. I may be posting weekly, monthly, or whenever the mood strikes me. As this is my first time blogging, I welcome suggestions and constructive criticism on how to improve the design, readability, and layout of my blog and my writing.

A little about me. I am a recent college graduate, majoring in horticulture, who has moved three times in the past year and a half, so unfortunately I do not have much of an outdoor garden. Why so many moves? Right after college I did two internships before settling into my current job, all three in different states, and my current living situation is not conducive to an outdoor, in-the-ground garden. So until I have my outdoor garden, my houseplants will be the stars of the show, along with pictures of gardens and nurseries that I visit. I will also be writing about plants that I would like to grow and ideas that catch my attention.

As I am about to head off to work, this short post will have to do for now. I'll leave off with something to look at until I can make another post. The impetus that inspired me to finally start the blog I had been thinking of for some time now, and the newest addition to my indoor garden, Guzmania musaica.

Forgive me my quick snap shots. I promise I take nice pictures too!

First off a view of one of my plant shelves. The guzmania is the big one with the orange mace-like inflorescence.

A closer view of that medieval flower spike. Beautiful, especially on a cold winter day, but not the star attraction of this bromeliad. 

A close up of the mosaic pattern on the leaves. The undersides are purple and the tops are green. 
I have lusted after this bromeliad since I first opened my father's houseplant encyclopedia from the 1970's. Unless you live in Florida or Hawaii, though, it is almost impossible to find. At least I had not seen it available in any stores or online until about a week ago. Now it is mine, my own, my precious!

And now I'm late for work. Until next time...

4 comments:

  1. Wow...Guzmania musaica huh? I'm going to have to watch for that one, it's fabulous!

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    1. Isn't it just? I got it off of Ebay from a lady in Florida, shirleygk. Exceptional care in packing, plant was even better than advertised, and reasonably priced for a hard to find bromeliad. Pretty standard bromeliad care. Put some water in the central cup and keep it out of direct sunlight. This is a lower-light bromeliad. It does seem to have slightly long stolons, which can make potted house culture a little more difficult. The pup is on a 5-6 inch long stem.

      Thanks for being my first commenter!

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  2. How do I care for this plant? I wass given one as a gift. I live in Zimbabwe

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    1. Well, you can probably leave it outside all year, unless you live at an especially high elevation. It doesn't like temperatures below about 10 degrees Celsius, and grows best with more than 50% relative humidity. Keep the central cup filled with water, preferably rainwater. Keep it out of direct sunlight. This bromeliad grows in shade. You can attach it to a tree trunk or branch by placing a pad of moss on the tree, spreading the roots of the bromeliad over the moss, putting another layer of moss over the roots, and securing the whole assembly with fishing line, twine, whatever you have. Just keep an eye on the tree if you use fishing line. If it starts cutting into the bark, remove the line. If the bromeliad hasn't attached itself to the bark by then, you can tie it back on. Or, you can simply keep it in a pot of any loose, free-draining mix. Water the roots when they get dry, but keep that central cup filled.

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