The photos are from a collecting trip earlier this month. I was mainly looking for Costus and was fortunate enough to find several, even more than my earlier trip in 2005. There are more photos to come but some beautiful Costus spp as well as some Heliconia etc. are up already We even found something that may end up being a new species of Costus.
C lima is nice and one I saw before. This time I also saw some C comosus which can look very similar. My favorite is the basal blooming C sp aff curvibracteatus. I knew about it several years ago but didn't see it in 2005. My friend in Panama found some a few years later and was able to take us to it. In addition she had it growing and in full bloom at the time. It was near impossible to get good photos due to poor lighting and humidity. It's a big impressive plant! We also recollected a silver leaf form of what may be C nitidus. I didn't expect to see it this time but we lucked out!
The Heliconia are great. I have another photo of an even prettier subspecies of H ramonensis to add. I wish I had space to grow Heliconia.
They do take up GH space. I put them in 20gal containers- 4 to a pallett to move into the GH every winter. Were you able to collect seeds or can you bring back stem cuttings? I sprouted some C. montanus this spring but they dont like the heat.
I was able to get seed, rhizomes, and or cuttings of most of the costus. I should have got C glaucus but didn't and didn't want C guanaiensis... or leavis but may have some anyways. Both are monster plants. About 16 species then some variations in curvibracteatus and others. Also brought back some other collected types that my friend was already growing from other areas.
C montanus looks beautiful, too bad they didn't make it.