I thought you may like to drool over these gorgeous darlings.
I don't have the bright tropical look of the broms and cordys etc , but these make up for it, even for a short time. None of these posted have names and I hope to eventually find out what some are.
Dianne, all mine live either in 3 shadehouses or under the large cypress tree. They are not particular except for not liking too much direct hot afternoon sun. They will take up a lot of room if you let them grow as mine have done. I see a drastic prune coming. If you want to know anything about them . Dmail me and I will let you know what I have learnt . I am no expert but have found you do learn more from doing than just reading garden books.
Here's old faithful red, my very first one. Flowers like mad every year.
Just for those who don't know about the beginnings of the collection. This photo is from when I first brought the collection home back in 2007. Very neglected and half dead. About 900 at first which I have sized down a bit to around 450 now.
After a very savage pruning and repotting plus a bit of TLC, this is how they look now. This was taken back in Sept this year, so you can add a good few inches more to their size.
This is part of the last shadehouse we built for them.
I was lucky enough to be at a local show when some were being sold. Of course, I bought them and on asking found out the seller was a lovely lady going blind. All she wanted was a a good home for them, so sold them all to me very, very cheap. The poor things had not been looked after for a long time so required lots of TLC. I also had a bonus of lots of daylilies and zygos (schlumbergera ) and a few other plants including some bromeliads.
You would have cried to see what I did , but I had to be ruthless in pruning. Sadly a lot were not able to survive and there were 100s already dead at the place before I came along.
I am being rewarded now with these gorgeous flowers.
Most did not have names any longer which is a pity, because they originally were all named and a lot bought from overseas long before our quarantine laws were in force.
I still have quite a few with tags I can read, but have to wait for flowers to verify names.
There are numerous seedlings too, as she loved breeding them. I will be able to name those when they flower.
What a great story Jean...and what a monumental undertaking..!! I imagine that when a new one flowers...it would seem like like a reward for all your hard work...How happy the lady who had them originally would be if she could see them today.
Do you think that the Epi Society would be able to give you a hand identifying the ones that you can't?...You might have to beat them off with a stick...such an opportunity...
The ones that you have shown us are glorious..what other treasures will you uncover?
Please post every new one for us to see...
Some years ago, I came upon an orchid collection in very similar condition - the owener was an old fellow whose health had gotten the best of him but he just did not want to give up. I noticed the labels and saw some incredible species...I told him that I had a large greenhouse, many orchids, lived about 15 miles away, and if he ever decided that he wanted to put his plants in a new place, please call me...I told he'd have visitng privlidges for as long as he wished. A few weeks later, he called me !! Asked if he could come over to see my plants...YES !! When he arrived, he had about 50 plants in his car with him...guess he liked what he saw - he told me to come over and get the rest when I could. After much repotting and trimming - you know the routine - my collection had increased by over 300 !! He came over quite often, then when he could no longer drive, I'd go get him. He'd just stand there and gaze at the plants - often telling me where he'd gotten it...he traveled extensively, and some were plants he'd gotten from their native habitat. Now, when one of his blooms, I take a flower to his grave...sort of sad, but yet, satisfying .
That made me cry...how sweet. hat a neat experience. There as a house I would always pass in route to my parents home. Every time that I passed this yard I would admire all of its beauty. All of the plants were mature and well established, you could tell that they had been there and lovingly attended to for a long time. The best part was that this garden always had several things blooming simultaneously all times of the year. Sometimes I would see the person responsible for this lovely garden..a tiny red haired lady with a walker hand watering and grooming. She stole my heart. I always told myself the next time she is out there, to stop and tell her how much I admired her garden or offer to help her out. But, I never got up the courage.
She passed and the yard went downhill. House was vacant and someone would just come mow lawn. One day the mowing person was there so I stopped and spoke to who was her grandson. I told him that if they decided to sell property to contact me. I mentioned that I was in love with her garden and wanted to preserve it, not changing a thing. He looked at me like I was from another planet. I regret not having courage to talk to her.
jrw... you are another plant guardian angel...as Jean is...wonderful story with a happy ending.
locoluna...it's so sad, isn't it, when you watch years of love and hard work go down the tube. Unfortunately when it's a whole garden you can't do very much. If the house is still vacant maybe there is still a chance...
Some people just don't have that nurturing instinct...though you would think that they would maintain it for property values.
Someone is living there. I assume that it is the grandson. He missed out on the gardening gene. LOL. I don't even drive that way to my parents anymore. Can't look at it...too disheartening. Going to folks for Thanksgiving tomorrow. Perhaps I'll go that way for a change just to see. I found out from an old fellow that is my moms neighbor (another plant freak and wealth of knowledge) that this lady and her husband used to have a nursery on the other side of the street. Very interesting because I had a similar dream for that little 1920's bungelo. Being too small for a family to live in. Well a family of "hoarders". Thought I would turn it into a shabby chic little garden art and specialty and rare plant store. Kind of a cool little idea. But, with the economy in the state that it is...not the most business savvy choice.
That sounds like a great idea,keep it in mind...he will put it on the market sooner or later...
it would be lovely if it worked out and then we could go on your journey with you.
I'm sure that your economy will be back to normal soon...so keep your plans in your head.
Have a happy day with your family tomorrow...Dianne
I know this has nothing to do with epis or plants but you talking about how the "grandson" is not doing the right thing with someone's life's work made me think about a garage sale that I went to once. The lady had passed on and the husband and family were getting rid of all her crocheting and needleworking , even the spinning wheel. Half finished work was just shoved into baskets that were hand made, maybe by her, and sold for next to nothing. They didn't even have the decency to look through her beautiful handy work. There were scissors and tapes and needles and cottons, even a fob watch in the bottoms of these baskets.I was most upset to think that she must have meant so little to these people. I told my boys that I hoped that they wouldn't do that with my treasures and that they take their time and look through what I have been doing at least. Anyway I thought about this lady for a long time afterwards and I still do when I go into my sewing room and see things that I know have come from her. I hope she knows that I'm treasuring her treasures. Colleen
ctmorris...doesn' it just amaze you how insensitive some people are...just makes you want to cry. At least, you were able to retrieve some of her things and continue to enjoy them. Seriously, I am going to give many of my best, most treasured things away so that I can see them being enjoyed by someone else.
wow, just looking at these fabulous photos and i am so inspired! i have had my first epiphyllum flower flush and they are spectacular to say the least. i feel i could get addicted to collecting them as i did nothing special to get such a jaw dropping display-thanks for sharing them
I only have two epis.
The second one I bought on E Bay last year so I have not seen it flower yet
but do have a pic from the grower (brilliant mauve and pink)
The first one I went to a garage sale and saw it. I asked the lady if it was for sale.
She said "Oh that thing, it never does anything, give me $2 for it if you want it."
So I did and it has the most beautiful peach coloured flowers, 5 of them last year!!!
Amazing Jean! I know what my next obsession will be.
I have attached my only. Currently flowering.
Do your Epis last longer than one night? If I don't put it in the diary when I see the buds coming I will go out the next morning and see what is left.
Steve, just about all of my epis are day bloomers. You will find that the night bloomers are usually white or cream and do fade quickly , while the day ones are all colors and mine generally last a few days to a week.
dmail me if you want some cuttings.
Cedreena, a very lucky bargain for you.
Love to see your pics Anthony. Mine don't start to get buds until around late September and then bloom through October into November. I haven't seen any that have flowered in autumn before in the colder climate.
Oh my!! How fortunate were you 77sunset :) Well, sounds like you earnt the reward of beautiful blooms doing some plant rescue!! I've become completely obsessed with these plants myself. We had a red one for many years but it's only been recently that I've discovered they come in other colours!! so, I've now got a few cuttings!! Do you sell cuttings at all? I'm in country SA and have found it difficult to source colours!! :)