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Well the sun is still shining even though they forecast rain all week so it seems something has gone wrong with the weather forecasts, and just when they had them pretty accurate. Anyway it will make for a nice fine weekend for those going away for the Easter break holiday weekend. Wow! Itís great to see so many posts, what a lot of reading to do, so Iíd better make a start.
Colleen - Iíll bet you, John and the boys are all looking forward to the Easter Weekend, and all for all different reasons; John and the boys for the camping experience and motor bike riding and you for a chance to ďrechargeĒ and enjoy your garden without any interruptions. However you may find like I did once when my wife took the kids away for Easter that the house seemed so empty and I just couldnít concentrate on anything. It was nothing I could put my finger specifically but things just didnít seem right. What I wasnít going to do that weekend while they were away was nobodyís business. I had a list of jobs all planned and do you know I didnít really get anything done as I missed the sound of arguing kids and the dog barking with them so much that it all seemed unnatural and I just couldnít get motivated.
About the Neo. Meyendorffii ĎRed Striataí; sorry, but I only have the one plant and as I told another friend who enquired, I paid much more for it than I should have only to find that I have great difficulty growing it here. Itís extremely slow, wonít put up pups and in other words is a real ďmongrelĒ and will probably turn out to be one of those rare Neoís that just puts up one pup and then dies and you never seem to get ahead with it. I was told itís a New Zealand hybrid and thatís why I bought it as the New Zealanders are breeding some great plants, however it seems I got the ďlemonĒ, either that or as Iím beginning to suspect, itís not the plant in the photo I was sent, as my plant hasnít got anywhere near the colour thatís shown in that pic. (Which was from the bloke who sold me the plant). Thatís the trouble you get when buying plants from pictures, and although Iím always warning everyone else, it seems like I didnít heed my own warning.
Karen Ė I canít help you much with advice about racinaea fraseri as I only have a pup which I bought just last year and at this stage have no experience with it whatsoever. I have sent an email to the chap I bought it from and hopefully heíll get back to me with some answers to your questions.
Jen Ė Good to see you back on here again. I remember Sue saying they were going on a trip around Australia but I donít know when they were leaving. I also remember her having a big ďdummy spitĒ about DG which kept eating her posts before she got to complete them; and she said then that she was going to spend more time on Face Book which is a pity as she is a good mate and very knowledgeable about bromís and will be missed very much here.
I like your picís, especially the Aechmea Fantasy, do you know anything about its history? Looking at the banding I suspect it has Ae. Chantinii in the parentage but I canít find it on the BCR or the FCBS sites so itís unregistered and could be a recent hybrid or an old one, who knows? As for this new photo ďthingĒ, I reckon itís great but itís a pity itís limited to only five picís, because if you have to start a new post to show more, it breaks the continuity of the series.
Tash Ė Good to see you posting again also, and that advice from Jack that you passed on is well worth taking notice of. That Neo ĎOn Targetí that you posted the pic of, I thought I got a pup a while back (from Aaron I think), but I looked for it yesterday and couldnít find it, so maybe it was just a fantasy from my dreams. One can but hope!
MyaC Ė Another option would be to mount some of your bromís on trees if you have any. A lot of people forget that many brom species originated on trees and man only put them pots for his own convenience. There are a few important rules to remember when mounting bromís on trees; Rule one is to make sure the tree isnít of the type that drops its bark. Rule two is to make sure the plants are securely attached and canít move. If they can move, they wonít put down any roots. Rule three is to make sure the base of the brom is in direct contact with the bark on the tree. Some people advocate putting a bit of potting mix or sphagnum moss between the brom and the tree, this isnít a good idea as the brom will preferentially send roots into the mix or the moss and not onto the bark where you want them, and because of this they take much longer to attach and establish themselves. Many different genera are suitable for tree mounting, but I find ones that work well are Neoregelias, Billbergias and Aechmeas.
Judging by your picís, the wallabies soon found where you hid the bromís, so you have to come up with a better solution. Often the smell of the water in the centre attracts some dogs, but I donít know about Wallabies. I know of one brom friends who had a problem with Bush Rats eating the seed capsules in her Neoregelias, but I think mounting them on a tree would be a good place for you to start.
Shirley Ė Yes, probably a good idea to give falling off a ladder a miss. Thereís always that old saying that I try to follow which says, ďSlow and steady wins the raceĒ. Well Iíve found I rarely win the race but I usually ďfinishĒ the race so I guess thatís not too bad either for an old fart like me. That looks like a young Neo. Raphael in your pic also. If it is, it will colour up much more if you gradually increase the light itís receiving.
Wendy Ė Yes the seed arrived today and itís gratefully accepted. Iíll add your name to the list for saundersii seedlings but like I said, I wonít send them until the mail gets back to normal after Easter. Did the bits and pieces Jen took up to you arrive in OK condition? I must say I was pretty confused as I thought you, Jen and Tash all lived near each other and never though Tash lived so far away from you. Never mind Tash, itís filed in the old brain for future reference. It was great though to be able to use Jen as a courier as it would have cost a fortune to send the larger plants through the post. Wendy I think weíll have get Johnny to tie that camera of yours around your neck so you know where it is, otherwise weíll never get to see your picís. Gee you only sowed the seed a week ago and already you have germination, thatís fast; although I donít expect it to be that fast down here as we donít have that Queensland sunshine to hurry thing along.
Breeindy Ė Isnít it always the way, the plants we like are either in short supply, are far too expensive or are ďdogsĒ to grow. Never mind there are always new ones coming along, thatís the beauty of hybrids.
Your plant does look like a ďGuzzieĒ and possibly a Guzmania lingulata or lingulata hybrid, but itís hard to say with the pic being so small and DG having printed all the copyright info over the top of it, so Iíll reserve my judgement.
Thatís about it for now so have a happy and safe Easter to everyone.
All the best, Nev.
I'll finish with a few pic's of mounted broms Pi. 1 is Aechmea Fasciata mounted in the fork of a Pepper Corn tree, Pic. 2 are some plants of Aechmea Foster's Favourite mounted on an hardwood old pole out of the bush, Pic. 3 is an Aechmea Orlandiana mounted on a branch off a Paper bark Tree, when using this type of branch, cut the bark right back to bare wood where you mount your plant otherwise the roots just go into the bark and don't attach properly. Pic No. 4 is Aechmea Recurvata mounted in a Pepper Corn tree and pic No. 5 is of Neoregelia Cruenta 'Broad Leaf'