Category Archives: Gardening: Tillandsia

T. streptophylla x pseudobaileyii “Gorgon”

The beginning of the end for my “Gorgon” It has started to spike. Soon, the pups will appears and gradually, the mother Gorgon will fade and die.

Sounds pretty dramatic, doesn’t it?

You cannot imagine my disappointment when I found it spiking. The Gorgon is an accidental Pride and Joy. For years, I thought it was an ugly looking T. caput madusae sonoran snow.

Came a day when I showed it to my friends and they immediately identified it as a “Gorgon”. It is very nice to have Tilly bros. Frankly, it is a plant which I am still trying to figure out how it got into my collection. Perhaps it was during one of my impulse moments that it became mine.

Admittedly, I am curious to see how many pups will come out . Hoping that it will be about five. More the merrier. Already, I hear my friend saying “Fert! Quick! Fert!”. Lol.

T. streptophylla x caput medusae “Como”

The youngest of my three comos decided to spike. I’m alright with my plants spiking now. Used to be really cheesed off. Don’t yell so much any more. My friend kept assuring me that the plant is hard to find and that the pups will be much sought after. Hope it will pup at least four pups. Need to fertilise a bit.

Maybe I should start a Tilly Farm.

Go forth and multiply

In an effort to reduce carbon footprints relating to the import of Tillandsias and Platyceriums and also to save $$$$ on buying plants for the 2012 SGF, your truly have started on a project (“quest” sounds so Camelot) to propagate as many plants as possible. With airplants, it is just a matter to getting the required plant, getting it to spike, bloom and pup (lots and lots of them!).

Unfortunately, there are some airplants which started to spike/flowers when only a pup:

Ionantha “Ron” pup blooming two months after removal from mother plant.

Eric Knobloch pups spiking less than 6 weeks after removal from mother plant

They are just this small:

I attribute this to the fact that my growing area has bright direct sunshine for at least 9 hours a day, can be hot and has a good water supply full of nutrients (read pond water).

The pups produced by these young plants might not be very strong. Will be keeping an eye on them.

Also thanks to those factors, a few of my precious darlings have started to spike:

T. streptophylla x pseudobaileyii “Gorgon”

28″ inch long T. caput medusae

The prettiest of my Nellie Roses

Bulbosa Belize “Giant Form”

The circle of life continues. I would love to have them continue growing big and lovely and not flower at all but nature will take its course. Will have to make sure, though, that the second generation does not start the third generation too fast.

For platyceriums, it is a slightly different ballgame.

You have to find a mature plant. THEN you have to wait for the spores to be ready. If you get there too late, you will find this scene greeting you:

P. coronarium with shedded spore patch

This is one of the spore patch I am looking for: a P. Grande’s spore patch:

The Platyceriums I have lined up for propagation are:

P. Bifurcatum
P. Coronarium
P. Elephantosis
P. Grande
P. Ridleyii
P. Wandae

Look out for a blog from me about three years later to see what how the spore programme has progressed.

T. Capitata “Pink”

This is by far the prettiest bracts I have ever seen on a capitata. Very sweet and appealing.

The Seller said he removed the flowers for better presentation. It certainly worked. Three of these beauties are now in my collection. I expect to have > 12 pups in the next six months. Capitatas have a pretty good pupping ability.

Tillandsias aka Airplants

You know them. The most common ones look like tiny pineapples, hence the chinese name “air pineapples”. Here is a pic of a blooming Ionanatha Maxima. When the airplant blooms, the leaves sometimes change colour.

Here is a tray of Ionantha Rubra and Ionantha v. Ionantha:

For some odd reason, I love airplants. Perhaps I got that from my mother.

25 years ago, she bought loads of them. And loads of them died on her. She thought it was her brown fingers. But now we know that it could be the salty air (she lives near the sea).

It is a pity she has refused to start on them again as recent years have brought many different types of airplants into the Singapore market.

One of the most sought after is the King of Airplants: Xerographica. I was not too keen on the “little” fella. A present of two Xeros softened my heart. My friend has a Xero clump (that’s rare).

Now that there is a King, there has to be a Queen, right?

Meet Streptophylla. I have both the normal and the purple form.

“There’s normal and purple form?” Oh yes. When you start on airplants, do not be surprised at the variations you can find. Here is a picture of Streptophylla purple.

I have been growing airplants for about 2 – 3 years now. Presently, I am going for the big plants and the clumps. If you think a blooming (I’m not swearing) single Ionantha Druid is pretty, then wait till you see the clump. The best part is that the bloom is white and not the common purple (ack) one.

Here is one of my favourite picture: two bunches of spanish moss hanging in my Garden. When I first hung it up, I was worried that someone with an overactive imagination might have a heart attack:

Nearby hangs the Selerianas:

I was told that these require a higher skill level. I have no problems with them in my Garden but others have quite a bit of problem with it.

If you want to know more about Airplants in Singapore, then join me at Green Culture Singapore. The link it on the right side of this page. See ya!