Lynn and Olaf, your plants are gorgeous. Olaf, I love that little 'Amazade'. Could you please put me on you list for a seedling or cutting? I love the meaning of it's name-friendship. I think it's the perfect plant to be shared among gessie friends. I am waiting for violet leaves to send up babies, and as soon as I have some I will send them off to you. I'm just starting again with gessies. Last winter I lost most of my collection of orchids, hoya and violets. I had an emergency trip to NY for a death in the family. Unfortunately the orchids and hoya reside outside on the patio. Violets are inside. Freezing temperatures froze the outside plants and lack of water did a number on the violets. So I'm starting over. Keep posting your pictures. I have a want list that is getting longer and longer each time I see beautiful plant pictures.
I just love everything fuzzy and everything that is simple and elegant. Well, 'Amizade' is a winner in all the above categories and on top of that, she's easy to grow and bloom and looks good with or without flowers. To quote Arleen Dewell "The Perfect Hybrid".
As you all well know, I'm simply in love with (almost) everything Sinningia. Well, I guess, that makes me a little biased... However, 'Amizade' has all the right qualities that one would expect from a good houseplant. Okay, she's not as flashy as other Gesneriads are but she's also very forgiving and absolutely not fussy, which unfortunately isn't always true of the more flashy ones...
'Amizade', in my opinion, is a very good way to get started with Sinningias in particular and Gesneriads in general.
Oh, and yes! I am pushing (mini) Sinningias here! LOL And y'all better not get me started on why EVERYBODY should grow at least one micro mini...
I went outside to bring some Alsobias and Nematanthus in for the winter and look what I found blooming. This Hemiboea subcapita and a shooting star hoya just made my day. The dogs have been enjoying them all week long, but didn't think to tell me!
Streptocarpus 'Bristol's Party Boy'. This one didn't have many flowers through Summer - an occasional one or two. Now that the weather has cooled down significantly, the plant has 6 buds and quite a few more coming. I can't wait for this Strep to reach its full potential. :)
The micros that I grow enclosed are thriving on neglect, the unenclosed ones are on a pebble tray, on wicks or in a high sided container. Watering has never been a problem. The unenclosed ones might initially lose a leaf or even a crown but they bounce back stronger and better and can actually take a bit of (almost) drought...
Beautiful Olaf and Maria! I have lots of things in bloom,but my darn camera keeps acting up.My son in Texas could probably figure it out,but if I tell him I know he will go out and buy me a new one and I don't want that!
Olaf...Your sinningias are very nice. Could you please post a picture of your plants growing conditions. You say they are enclosed and some in high sides, etc. I would hope you could show a pic and also if they are on a light shelf, a pic of where they are growing. I have to change some growing conditions for some of mine as they are not growing and blooming as well as I would like and hopefully some of the pictures you post could help me. Thanks so much!
This is a brandy snifter with Sinningia 'Mighty Mouse' in the center and some S. pusilla around it. There are also some little S. muscicola seedlings somewhere in there. Again: The container is not covered.
I'm actually on a mission to make the micros more widely available. I think that everyone should have one. Seriously! Throw them in a mason jar or something with some dirt, screw on the lid, keep bright and warm - that's it. :)
Plant it! Those little things sprout within weeks (2-4 usually). Just keep it domed or in a baggie), just dampen the mix slightly and leave it alone. Once sprouted, they grow to flowering size in usually 4-6 weeks. :)
Olaf...Thanks so much for taking the time to take the pictures. I really appreciate this. For neglected plants, they look pretty great! Mine have had some neglect and I've lost quite a few this summer. Luckily a lot are rhizomes and tubers and they will come back - I hope. I think its pretty good you can grow the mini sinningias like that. All mine are enclosed in jars and glass containers, but I don't seem to find the correct moisture level where they will just thrive...I do think they would do better not completely enclosed for me. I also put a layer of perlite down first in my containers. I tried to grow pots of achimenes in an aquarimum much like you have your sinningias & misc plants but I lost allf of them, I could not keep them moist enough but then again, it was not a good summer for the plants with me traveling alot. What are those light strips you are using...they are working really well. I think my lighting is a major problem with my plants also. Thanks again!
And I didn't want to slight anyone elses pictures...all the plants are just lovely! Little plant envy here. I have to say I have a lot of non-blooming plants that should be showing off for our family visiting from Massachusetts!
Beautiful pictures, Olaf and Lynn.
Olaf, how often do you water your sinns.? Should they be kept moist? I have wicked the one you sent me and so far it's doing great. I'm not sure how often to water if not on wicks. It's on my plant shelf sitting among my baby violets. Under lights. I have to get a light meter that works. I have the meter that does water ph and lights, but it's not working. The ones for cameras are so expensive. I'm going to do some shopping around.
The one thing that I have learned over the years is that if you have a somewhat unsteady watering hand (like I do...), then a light mix with a lot of Perlite is the key. Sinningias, Streps, Violets and many other commonly grown Gesneriads like it on the dry side when humidity is above approximately 50%.
As for the rhizomatous genera like Achimenes and Kohleria: As long as they are actively growing, NEVER let them dry out! Anything from leaf damage to premature dormancy can be the result... It is almost impossible to overwater a Kohleria that is in active growth but forget to water them and they droop almost immediately and the leaf damage starts within a few hours.
Newly acquired mini Sinningias often times shed their leaves or even all their crowns entirely. On top of that, mini Sinningias are very brittle plants and hard to ship without damage. However, if you just take the tuber and put it into some barely damp mix and dome it, you will usually see the new sprouts within a few weeks. Often times the tuber has some spare sprouts coming up right away. From sprout to flower, it usually takes 6-8 weeks.
Tish: Achimenes should make PERFECT outdoor basket plants for Summer in your area. The key is to keep the soil moist at all times. Oh, and do you recognize the yellow flowered Episcia in the picture? :)
Eileen: I don't have any of the gadgets you are talking about and have never used them in my entire life. The only thing I have is a cheap thermometer/hygrometer which is probably not very precise but does the trick for me.
As a general rule, Sinningias don't need a lot of water when out of bloom and surprisingly large amounts when in bloom, particularly when grown in small pots. It's always a good idea to let the mix dry a bit before watering again. Wicking also works wonderfully. If you grow Sinningias domed, they actually thrive on neglect. I water my enclosed micros maybe once a month and sometimes even less.
Oh, and Sinningias will show you that they need water as they will start to droop but will get back to normal within a few hours after watering. Usually even the flowers come right back to life. Not recommended but it happens... LOL
""As for the rhizomatous genera like Achimenes and Kohleria: As long as they are actively growing, NEVER let them dry out! Anything from leaf damage to premature dormancy can be the result... It is almost impossible to overwater a Kohleria that is in active growth but forget to water them and they droop almost immediately and the leaf damage starts within a few hours.""
Olaf, thanks for the info. Now I know why the few Kohleria I had a few years ago didn't make it. I didn't water them enough. LOL
I've copied your info and am saving it in my documents so I can go and read it again, and again.
Oh, Eileen: Kohlerias in hot weather and high humidity can easily get mildew spots and some varieties are more prone to that than others ('Mother's Lipstick' is a mildew magnet for me, mor example). However, Kohlerias are such strong growers that mildew is usually more of a cosmetic problem.
Atlanta is very hot and dry in the summer,not much rain and when it does it hardly gets anything wet. Even in the shade, it is very hard for me to grow achimenes outside because they need watering so often. Anything outside needs a large pot and needs to have a well established root system. I do have the old purple achimenes growing outside, but my newer varieties arent' established enough to grow outside...on and off I am not home often enough to keep up with the watering. If it can't "wilt" alot, its doomed. Small pots are impossible for any outside plants, they cannot hold the moisture long enough. I did learn you can put a smaller pot inside a larger pot and the inner pot will stay moist longer, but I have not tried this with achimenes.
I had the opposite luck with kohleria I tried to grow outdoors...the rhizomes rotted! I guess dry, too wet, dry, too wet...too many times.
And Olaf, My Genevieve does not look as good as yours!...good job! So nice to see it growing so well. I need to restart my stolens to get it going again. One day when I have more hours!...I've spent enough time with plants today.
I want to ask Olaf...those plants (mini sinningia?) setting in the pebble trays...how did you plant the pot, perlite in the bottom and a wick? do you water the pot and put some water in the pebbles for humidity or you you just fill up the tray and the plant takes up the water from there? thanks
The micro mini on the pebble tray is S. muscicola (aka. "Rio Das Pedras"). The plant is in LFS in a little condiment cup. No wick. When I refill the water in the pebble tray, I do that by watering through the Sinningia pot until the pebble tray is full enough. Next to the Sinningia there is a Maxillaria tenuifolia ("Coconut-pie-Orchid") on the same watering and fertilizing regimen and they make good companions.
I only use MiracleGro Tomato fertilizer 1/4 strength every time I water. I have never used SuperThrive or any of those Vitamine supplements. What I do use is RootOne for it's fungicidal properties.
I forgot how dry it gets in Georgia in Summer. Well, anything rhizomatous is pretty much doomed unless you figure out some kind of way to keep your plants moist at all times. LARGE pots are essential anyway and plunging smaller pots into larger ones also has the benefit of keeping the roots cool.
Have you ever tried the polymer-gel-crystals? Lowe's sells them as "SoilMoist". I use them indoors and out for Kohlerias and everything else that is very thirsty. These crystals have cut down my watering on a Kohleria in a basket from 3 times a day in Summer to only once a day!
Another thing that can be very helpful for outdoor plants is to use a much heavier mix than you would indoors. Kohlerias and Achimenes as well as Sinningias like S. tubiflora are very fast growers and are very gluttenous in their food and water intake and a heavier, richer mix can help accomodate their needs.
Speaking of Sinningias: Have you tried tubiflora, 'Apricot Bouquet', 'Arkansas Bells', macrostachya, leucotricha, cardinalis, bullata and a plethora of others? Some of them could even be hardy in a well protected spot with some mulch in your ares.
Oh, and 'Genevieve' has been blooming all Summer and is just now taking a bit of a break. I'll have to cut off some stolons and start some new plants. It's a nice, large Episcia that should be grown more widely. :)
Hi, This is a Hybrid from the Violet Barn. It is the best flowering strep. I have ever grown. I repoted it to a 4 inch square pot and placed it a north window in may. I hope you how heavy it is flowering in Sept 2011 and has been flowering this heavy since June! I didn't add any fertilizer to thr mox and din't remember to fertilize it early August.
I'm going to spell this incorrectly, sorry. Amaphillion rupeste. It is growing in a one gallon fish bowl. I got this rhizome from Jim Roberts and took me two years to get it growing this nicely...he does not grow his enclosed. This is also a small white bloom.
This is not a gessie, just a house plant. It is a rooting cutting from the mama plant... I'm not sure of the name, I got it years ago in a grocery store hanging basket. The flowers are a pretty little yellow and are scented,the leaves have a pretty varigation, and it has woody stems, hard for met to root! I'm seen this plant in the Logees greenhouse catalogue. This is one of my favorite plants, but the mama does get messy, it blooms alot and when they dry and drop off there is a lot to clean up, but I really don't mind because the blooms are worth it!
I think you can never go wrong with noid violets, they do the best for me...maybe its because I don't expect the most from them, ha.
Thats an amazing show from the strep...thats when I always lost mine, when I repotted. Love the blooms and am disapointed I cannot grow them, but I've given up killing them...I just don't have the heart anymore.
I especially love the leaves on Pearcea hypocyrtiflora!
I have read where John in DC and Jim in Md grow some of the sinningia outdoors. I do have Banana Foster, Arkansas Bells, and Apricot Boquet sinningias and am working on rooting some cuttings so next year I can try them outside.
Hi Olaf, the Aeschynanthus came from someone else. I've never been great with those. Your Pearcea look so much like plants that I have labeled Gloxinella lindenani (sp?) i grew lots of seed varieties near one another in a tray and may have mixed/confused seedlings.
Hi Tish, Love the Amaloyphllon and your yellow unknown. This month is full of wonderful gessie pictures.
OOPS! Yep! Sorry Jamie! Thanks Randi! LOL My memory isn't the best...
Gloxinella lindeniana can have similar a similar foliage color/pattern as Pearcea hypocyrtiflora under certain light conditions but Gloxinella will grow unenclosed while Pearcea won't. Pearcea also has a much rougher leaf texture and Gloxinella usually has much darker leaves.
Both are cool plants but Gloxinella didn't enjoy my Summer temps too much... There were a few rhizomes but that's about it...
First of all: S. reitzii is a very variable species.
I have to agree that there are some similarities to certain Episcias but the texture is different and the plant has the usual Sinningia tuber.
The adult foliage is solid dark green and very attractive in its own right, particularly when the plant is in bloom and the scarlet red flowers make a great contrast to the foliage. Some clones of S. reitzii also have red veins and leaf undersides.
This article shows the "standard" form from Alan LaVergne's site:
Okay, here are some of my micro mini Sinningias. Currently, they are all grown in a fish tank but I will try to grow them unenclosed as soon as I have some plants propagated. Yesterday, I've also sown another batch of Sinningia pusilla and muscicola fresh from the pod. So, if there's any germination (which is very, very likely since they are tiny, pretty weeds), there will be some available next Spring. I have several more pods ripening and they all will be sown as they are ready.
Sinningia 'Mighty Mouse'. A classic micro by John Boggan. Has a tendency to be very weedy. John calls that a flaw while I call it cool! LOL Cuttings root within a week and start growing again after two to three weeks. And there are PLENTY of cuttings... This is the third batch of cuttings from a plant bought in April...
Sinningia concinna. My pride and joy. Hard to see in this picture but the plant has buds. Presumed to be extinct in the wild, I will make sure to help preserve the species and will propagate the heck out of her as soon as I can... :)
Everyone has such beautiful blooms! I may need to let a few of mine bloom, so I can post a few pix again, too!
Ok, so I'm looking for other suppliers of potting mix. I can still get up to the nursery in Boerne, which is where I've bought it for years. But, I was looking for alternate suppliers. I've tried mixing my own before, but that didn't work out very well . . .
I found this today . . . I have purchased Espoma products in the past, but didn't know they had expanded into the mixes . . . has anyone tried this yet? I'm trying to figure out if "organic" means they didn't add any fertilizer to it . . . http://www.espoma.com/p_consumer/potting_mix_overview.html (the violet mix is the 4th down on the left)
"Organic" does not necessarily mean "no fertilizer". Manure, for instance, would be both organic and a fertilizer and well rotted manure is often mixed with well rotted humus to bump up the nutritional value for heavy feeders.
However, I wouldn't be surprised if they would omit the fertilizer or use much less in their Violet mix.
Best would be to just call or email them and find out.
Most commercial mixes have some kind of fertilizer in them anyway. Even plain peat moss has fertilizer in it a lot of times.
That's exactly what I did, Olaf . . . I sent them a message. I'll give them a few days to answer, and if they don't, I'll give them a call on Monday. Unless I find the product here somewhere, then I can look at the bag myself. Just checked their "where to buy" page, and they have it listed at Rainbow Gardens . . . that's where I get my perlite, so I will give them a call tomorrow.
I don't remember them having a catalog with pictures, but I normally just go there, so perhaps I'm not the best reference. They're super nice people, they may have scanned photos or old catalogs for you.
Anyone have thoughts on more attractive labeling ideas for terrarium plants? I use white stakes, functional but unattractive. I often have multiple plants in a terrarium, I favor 29 or 20L. They don't have to endure the sun and weather changes of outdoor plant markers. I wonder if I can woodburn and then stain tongue depressors. They at least won't shine out brilliant white. Or, I use the slats from mini-blinds, I could get a darker color slat.
Be careful with wood in the high humidity of a terrarium! I tried all kinds of things for the same reason that you mentioned and for the purpose of staking (from popsicle sticks to bamboo skewers to treated bamboo stakes) and the only thing that didn't mould over pretty much immediately was the greeen, treated bamboo stakes.
One thing that I was thinking about trying is the thin sheets of cork that used to be popular for flooring or wall treatment ages ago.
They would be thin enough to be cut into smaller pieces and their tan color would make them blend right in while being light enough to be written on with a black marker. And most importantly: cork doesn't rot.
I use a fine point Sharpie paint pen on small rocks. I can always move the rock to a pot until I get a marker made for it if I transplant them to something else. I am green with envy and I shouldn't be. But my daughter sent me a picture of an item she bought at a garage sale for $6.00. It's an old Wardian case on legs!!!! I think I may have to bribe her to give it to me as a Christmas, Birthday and Mother's day combined gift. It is cool looking. Have a nice Sunday everyone. Lou
Home Depot told me that Dremel makes a special bit for rocks. I had them order me one and true to the ineptness of our local HG, the wrong bit came in and they wanted me to pay for it and I said no and they wouldn't order the correct one. It might be worth looking into. Let me know if you get one and how it works. I will be interested to know. Lou