I ditto everyones comments on the neatness of your video project Olaf. That makes a very inexpensive terrarium.
I'm taking inventory of my plants that survived the holiday season. Some have bloomed (probably hoping to set seed before they die!)
Sinningia 'Flair' - thanks to Olaf for sharing
Many Gesnerias can not ever allowed to dry out or they'll die very quickly. That and the fact that propagation of some of the hybrids is slow and difficult is the reason why they are not seen more often.
I will definitely have to try G. cuneifolia this year. From what others tell me, it's relatively easy except for the fact that it wants it WET at all times...
I can see a few hanging light bulbs on my light stand. Take up no space on the shelves, look good in macrame hangers (invisible or of crocet thread), and a real conversation starter. Thanks Olaf!!!!! Lou
Hanging those on the edges of the shelf was what I had in mind...
Well, and they should make pretty cool gifts. If you plug the hole with a cork or something, they should run maintenance free for quite some time.
Oh, btw, sallysblooms: There are Mercury and toxin free fluorescent light bulbs on the market (after European standards, where the same discussion took place over 10 years ago...). Just like with any other fluorescent light, it's always a good thing to check the label for Mercury and other toxins, since even some of the traditional fluorescent lights are pretty full of that stuff as well...
Olaf, is 'Cardinal's Flight' a cuneifolia? It was just labeled G. 'Cardinal's Flight'. Can it be propagated by tip cuttings? It seems to be doing very well in the middle of my lowest shelf, wet. Will it set seed? If so, I'll try putting some down for the Spring RR.
Jamie, the correct name for the hybrid would be G. 'Ako Cardinal Flight'. I wouldn't be surprised if G. cuneifolia was involved but I really don't know. I will ask on gphiles if my research doesn't turn up anything...
Here's a picture of Arleen Dewell's plant from the Convention 2010:
Olaf, what a great idea. Your bulb came out looking fantastic!
Jaime, love all your blooms. What a great way to start the year.
Olaf, question for you, since you are a seed expert. How long does it take for sinningia seeds to germinate? I sowed the seeds you sent and so far, I keep checking every day for signs of green. I hope it's quick. LOL
I am fascinated by your recycling of the old soda bottles. Forgive me if you have explained it before, but please telol me how it is done. Is there a wick in the cap end of the bottle? Thanks in advance.
Great pics to start January with :) Sister Jan...good to see you posting again LOL!! I make those pop bottle pots too but I remove my lids and pack the mix in the neck of the bottle. I am growing a few different Hoya and other plants in them. Wasn't sure about gessies. Good to know, Sis :) Earle, I was directed to this site for mine but not sure how Jan does it. http://toppertwo.tripod.com/pop_bottle_pots.htm
It's amazing how time flies when you are 'tidying' plants. I spent 8 hours the past 2 days playing 'catch-up' from the holidays. I'm exhausted. How did everyone's vacation treat their plants?
Here's Sinningia 'Darth Vader' with it's first bloom.
I spent the afternoon potting up stolons of the few Epicia plants I have. Now maybe I'll see some flowers. Jamie, that drimonia is awesome. I love the leaves. And the tiny flower is so cute.
Tommy, your noid is very pretty. Very delicate looking.
And Olaf, of course your plant blooms are AWESOME, as they always are. I keep adding, adding adding to my ever-growing list.
Hi Earle,I make my bottle waterers almost the same as the link Connie posted but I leave the cap on and just cut a slit in it..I use perlite in mine.Ginger ale bottles work best for me,the green bottle stops the alge from forming.
Good going Olaf,didn't take you long to make a self waterer.Forgot to tell you I love your light bulb.Isn't you tube great.Look up how to recycle plastic bottle as see what you come up with.Amazing ideas.I want to make one of these but theres no dircections.Wish I could buy one.
Hello, I am back -Happy New Year to all.The bulb project is cool in what was a hot bulb...
would love a couple of siningias if any one wants to share come spring. Thanks Helene
This Av and Gessie growing can be so sad sometimes. My whole collection of espys died from near frost conditions outside. They did beautifully outside for the past 2 years, but it got just a bit too cold this past week.sad
Well if it isn't January already. Holidays are over and I'm back to regular work schedule. Glad the madness is over. I am happy to say that one of the 4 mini Sinningias that I got is blooming. I will take some pictures tomorrow as well as some other African violets that looks beautiful !!!!
Thank you all for your comments. I will try to root some leaves. Keep your fingers crossed and hopefully have some plantlets to share. The cyclamens are all kept on their own plate of water. Right now I don't have any problems with mites and I'll keep my fingers crossed that I won't have to deal with them. In any case what would you treat both cyclamens and african violets for mines and mealy bugs??? Given the case that I grow them inside my room.
I learned that if I keep my room at 72 degrees and the cyclamens under lights they grow and bloom throughout the entire year. The violets do not mind at all since they are closer to the windows and it stays warmer. As you can see they are growing beautifully.
What a great way to start the new year with amazing flowers, it means the rest of the year will be filled with blooms, joy and thrills. Awesome job everyone! Lovely cyclamens, I think I'm falling in love with them and started to look for the seeds already, they are said to be pretty easy, we'll see. I'm getting some buds coming so hopefully my camera will be busy soon, hehe
I think your house is in full bloom, Rolando! You have some real beauties there. Speaking of cyclamen...I was visiting a lady this summer and she had a cyclamen sitting in her window. The blooms were spent but she still had nice foliage. I complimented her on the plant, calling it a cyclamen. She said that it wasn't a cyclamen, it was as African Violet. The *&%&*^% local florist told her that it was and A.V. and I couldn't tell her any different. That is so sad. This florist has also misinformed others on different plants she had sold. Ya think she would at least know what plants she sells HA!!
Bought another Cyclamen 2 weeks ago, lets see if I can keep THIS one alive. Mine usualy die when they go dormant and never come back. I think I'll keep trying to avoid dormancy this time. I' kill those like I kill Phal. orchids.
Again thank you all for your kind comments. I am a very happy gardener. Tommy the secret for me has been lots of light and always keep it watered. I water from the bottom just like I do with the african violets. Also I keep the temperature constant at 72 during the day going down to 67 at night. Mines haven't gone dormant and the oldest I've had for 9 months now and it send flushes of blooms followed by new leaves followed by more blooms.
Here's another seedling of Sinningia 'Country Bumpkin' x 'HCY's Fairy Weather'. I really like this one so far but the colors aren't completely finished developing in this first flower and the other seedlings have proven to be anything but stable...
I like it too. Yep, keeping my fingers crossed for ya :) I have been repotting and setting some leaves of some A.V.s. I am amazed at the size of my Kei Yoki blooms with such a small plant. The bloom stalks won't hold them up and the plant is covered with blooms.
Olaf, whatever the colors, it is still very pretty. My fingers are crossed for you. Hope it goes the way you want.
Connie. those two violets are gorgeous. I especially like Kei Yok with its ruffled edges. Anthoflores Barnabe is dainty looking.
Lovely flowers!!! I love waking up to new pictures of beautiful blooms. As always Olaf that Sinningia is amazing love the color contrast and the spots and stripes is like it's calling my name. I also really like both of the AVs. I will be adding them to my have to get list...LOL. I need to revisit that list and see what I already got from there.
Are you talking about the plant in the middle of the top row? That's Pearcea hypocyrtiflora. Needs a terrarium and also needs to be restarted every once in a while because the old leaves aren't particularly attractive and the plants can get quite leggy. Other than that, it's an easy and fast grower.
My Bibergia just finished its bloom too. It is gorgeous. Does it die back now and produce babies? I think I remember it that way. My 'Vista' is blooming now, is yours? and cygnet is going through its winter die back.
Thanks Jan. That's 'nimbus' in the front.
Great pictures everyone. Olaf, that Queens Tears is AWESOME. I had one a few years back, but never saw it bloom. It was outside all year long along screen enclosure. It just disappeared. My hubby may have thought it was just grass or a weed and pulled it out. He says no, but sometimes the leaves on plants look like the type of grass that grows here, if it's not mowed. LOL
Jamie: Billbergias, just like a lot of other Bromeliads produce one flower spike per rosette, and start dying back while making pups after they're done. Once the old rosettes are dry, just remove them. I have been so busy pinching the xCodonatanthus that I'm not exactly surprised that it hasn't bloomed for me yet. I am actually quite surprised that both my Alsobias are still looking as good as they do. Poor things! They always look so pitiful through Winter...
Eileen: Queen's Tears are tough as nails and can cope with (almost) everything you throw at them. However, being pulled out or mowed over isn't on that list... LOL
They have a tendency to bloom in mid winter but you can force the rosettes just like you would force a lot of other Bromeliads: by enclosing them in a plastic bag together with a ripe apple for a couple of weeks. That usually helps even the stubborn ones to send up a bloom spike. :)
I think that the iridescence is a trick that the camera played on me... Anyhow, the flower is definitely one of the "glitter"-type. 'Honeysuckle Rose' is a standard trailer and a very vigorous one for that matter... :)
I should definitely have enough leaves to include in the RR!
Sinningia pusilla, muscicola and concinna. The three original micro miniature Sinningia species side by side. Primarily pusilla and concinna are the ancestors of all the other micro and miniature hybrids and cultivars. Sinningia muscicola has only been discovered a few years ago but seems to begin taking hold as a parent for hybridizing micros ('Lil Georgie') and miniatures ('Yma').
The rough start was entirely my fault. A mixture of high temps and a little bit of neglect on my part made her grow a real tight crown which I decided to simply pinch out and start over. Now she's happy and that's the result. :)
Kohleria 'Strawberry Fields'. Small plant - plenty of rhizomes. This one makes rhizomes in ABUNDANCE! This is the second harvest on this very shoot. The first harvest took place in Summer before the plant even bloomed...
Kohleria rhizomes are possible but not likely in the RR. They don't store well for me and I usually wind up just potting them up. There will, however, be starts and/or cuttings.
Kohlerias get as tall as they want to get even when underpotted. However, they are impossible to keep hydrated in small pots. They love large pots, a relatively heavy, always moist mix and as much light as they can get.
Here's what the bulk of my Kohlerias looked like after the "Great Kohleria Massacre Of 2012"...
First things first: Thanks, Lynn, for this great, little plant! I got two pots of nice rhizomes out of the deal... :)
Here's what happened:
When I received this plant last Summer, it was already towards the end of the regular season for Eucodonias and eager to not lose the plant, it went straight into the propagator and promptly got forgotten for months...
Today, I was in a clean-up-my-plant-room kind of mood and this particular propagator also was on the to-do list.
Turns out, the plant had spread through half the propagator and started sending out distress-signals in form of those white, stringy rhizomes that a lot of rhizomatous Gesneriads make to a different extent, when stressed.
Funny enough, the plant made, like pearls on a string, fat, little rhizomes along the stringy ones, which were enough to fill a large, square pot. I also kept the original roots, gave them fresh mix and stuck them straight back into the propagator... :)
Gesneriads are always good for a surprise, aren't they?
What a happy place you've created Olaf, look at all the dwellers! no doubt why those rhizomes are so nice and fat, hehe. Another reason why I enjoy your posts is It's always something new for me to learn. So here my 2 questions: what kind of propagator do you use (1) and is it safe to remove the rhizomes and repot a kohleria without any of them (2)? My Longwood had a few but I was afraid to remove them and harm the plant. I suspect it may sound silly but it was my very first repotting a kohleria ever! The second pot is due very soon so an expert advise will be very helpful
As for your questions: Any large (tall) enough container with a clear lid will do as a propagator. I use anything from plastic storage boxes to fish tanks to plastic produce and carry out containers. If the container itself is clear, that's even better but generally, literally anything will do.
Okay, for the second question: you can remove any and every rhizome on a Kohleria when repotting. I do that all the time. It won't hurt the plant one bit. Rhizomes are means of both propagation and getting through dormancy. So, removing the rhizomes and potting them up kills both those birds with one rock.
What the plant will do is simple: keep on growing/blooming and make even more rhizomes. :)
Kohlerias are generally VERY tough plants and some are considered noxious weeds in some parts of the world.
The way, I have learned to look at Kohlerias, Achimenes and other rhizomatous Gesneriads (or even Sinningias, which are, of course tuberous) with a (possible) dormancy is this: treat them like you would a tender perennial like a Dahlia or a Gladiola in the garden. It's essentially the same thing when you think about it... ;)
Thanks Olaf. Interesting thing about my few sinns (pusilla, Freckles, Snow Bird) -- actually they're full of leaves most of the time and never dormant, maybe because they're young plants, less than 2 years old?
And just one more question: is it better to plant 1 K. rhizome per pot or do they like company?
Well, the micro and mini Sinningias don't really go dormant. By the time, the old shoot is finished, there's usually new shoots already coming up.
If a micro decides to go dormant, this dormancy usually doesn't last longer than a few weeks. With minis, it's essentially the same, only that their dormancy (if any) can last a little bit longer.
Dormant micro-tubers, you can just leave where they are and continue with your regular routine. They'll be back in no time.
With minis, take the tuber out of the pot and put it into a plastic bag with a little bit of Vermiculite and one or two squirts of water out of a spray bottle.
Store in a box and check regularly for new shoots. As soon as they come up, pot up the tuber and start watering carefully.
I grow most of my Sinningias (including the minis) with their tubers exposed. Grown this way, you can even leave the tuber in the pot and just cut back on watering until you see new shoots.
Many of the larger species won't go dormant until they have bloomed the first time. However, Sinningia seedlings have a tendency to look completely different and not very attractive for the first few growth cycles. Once the tuber is mature enough, the habit of the plant changes and looks like the ones in the pictures. A classic example for this are Sinningia leucotricha or Sinningia cardinalis. This type of Sinningia goes dormant every year. On the other hand, the micro mini species only go dormant if necessary.
Now, the minis are combinations of the larger species (S. eumorpha and conspicua are often involved, 'Freckles' is S. hirsuta x S. concinna) and the micros (S. pusilla, concinna and muscicola) and they inherit a set of characteristics from their parents, one of which is dormancy. This explains, why the minis are somewhere intermediary between the (almost) "everblooming" micros and the much more seasonal standards.
Before it's over, I'll have everybody convinced that the world needs more Sinningias!!! LOL
Olaf, you've already convinced me. I want everyone I see posted. I have one plant stand that has three shelves with lights. My saintpaulia and sinningia make there home on it. I'll have to take some pictures and post them here. I just got a 30" bakers rack at a garage sale, and have one shelf, so far, with a light fixture. I have Epicia on that one.
Three years ago I had so many violet babies that I ran out of room. I had them sitting in aluminum trays in the bathtub. Sadly, I lost almost my entire collection between the last two winters. I'm starting again and this time I've added sinningia and epicia. The sinningia are mostly from you, Olaf. They are doing well. Can't wait for the RR to start.
Here's the violets in the bathtub. It's a good thing we shower instead.
I'm really enjoying reading about ya'lls growing methods and plants. That's a good use of space in the tub. I may have to do that myself.
I bought this Chirita/Primulina today at our local nursery. This is a plantlet growing out of the flower petiole. I've never seen this on a Chirita before.
Now I'll have to go to Lowes and check out their plants. My HD is terrible for plants. They mainly have philodendrum and orchids and nothing else for inside the house. They should be getting some new plants at Lowes. Around the holidays they don't have too much. I only have one chirita that is from a leaf I got in a RR at GW. I didn't think it would send up a baby, but it did. I don't know which one it is. When it blooms, I'll have to post a picture for an ID.
Now I have to go and take pictures of my plant shelf with some blooming gessies.
OK, I promised some pictures. Here's my plant shelf with violets on the top shelf with sinn. guttata in the middle. The middle shelf has mostly violets and bottom shelf has babies on left and right with sinningia in the middle back and sinn. seedlings of mico-mini Bright Eyes x self.
jamiew, sinningia Bright Eyes is in the middle brown terrarium. The sinningia on the left is Chippewa Merry Martha. The violet on the right is Ballet Snowcone. Sorry, I should have put text on the pictures, but I'm still learnig to use PaintShop.
Southern Homes and Gardens on Vaughn Road. It has a huge greenhouse and sometimes sells standard gesneriads like Aeschyananthus, Columnea, Episcia, Streptocarpus, and Sinningia. Very rarely do they offer any african violets. They do have a good selection of other houseplants and tropicals though.
Olaf, I have a question for you. My sinningia guttata is very tall. It's blooming like crazy and the flowers are starting to hit the light fixture. I can't raise the lights because of the other gessies. Can I cut the top of the gutatta and will it root? Also will the bottom part send off a branch if I lop off it's top? I'm in a quandry over this and don't want to lose this cute sinningia. I love the flowers it send out.
I accidentally snapped the tip of one of my S. guttata a while ago and the plant didn't mind. There is a chance, however, that the shoot will look a little awkward afterwards because branches normally emerge from the upper leaf axils. Also, the remaining shoot will stop blooming because flowers only appear in the axils of the youngest leaves.
There is no guarantee that the tip will root but it usually does. S. guttata has a tendency to get leggy after a while and tip cuttings are one of the means to keep them going and looking good.
@jamiew---if I put my plants in the windows I'll end up forgetting about them. The only two good windows face north but the sills are less than 1 foot off the floor. My bedroom windows - one faces west and the other south. Down here the sun is too strong. My only place is on the plant shelf.
I haven't lopped off it's top yet. I took two leaves to try to root. I would hate for it to stop blooming. I'm going to wait a bit. Does sin. guttata form tubers? I know some sinns don't.
The plant makes tubers. I don't know if leaves will work and make viable tubers. However, cuttings definitely work and are a quicker way and a much safer bet than leaves.
Again: S. guttata has a tendency to get leggy and lanky over time and that would promt you to start over with a tip anyway. It's just like with Kohlerias or Episcias. Although you'll lose some buds and the tip may make a few leaf pairs without buds, the plant will resume blooming soon after restarting.
Oh, and you can also put the plant on a wick if you want to avoid chopping it down and if you are, like me, a forgetful waterer...
Eileen, I think that's Jan (Jannich) you were talking to about S. guttata. I read on another forum that Sinningia leaf cuttings sometimes produce plants with sterile tubers, but not always. I ordered some seeds of this from Mauro. It's so pretty with the dots.
I think that I am going to need another 4 tier shelf. I want sooo many more plants. It's not even funny. Olaf I absolutely love your plants. Eileen yours are very pretty as well. I've got to snap some new pictures of what's in bloom now. I've got 2 of my chimeras blooming and then some NOIDs that I got from a friend blooming beautifully as well.
That seemania sure is 'dayglo'!!! Olaf, what camera do you use for your pictures. It takes such awesome pictures. Your closeups are awesome. They are very sharp and clear. I love it when I see the hairs on the leaves.
Now this one was given to me by a friend. She couldn't keep the AVs any more so she gifted them to me. It has become my current favorite. Love the flowers and how many flowers bloom per inflorescence. It's name is AV. Harmony's Pinkstone
And finally these 2 are NOIDs that my friend gave me and looked whimpy but boy have they perked up and bloomed beautifully. The pink ones have such tiny flowers. I put my pink next to it for comparison.
I love all of those, especially Ethel's Reflection. You are obviously a very good grower!
My Yukako suckers a lot & I've had several 'babies' from it that have been gifted. I've a few other chimeras that don't sucker so well. I put down twenty something trailing chimera leaves a couple of yrs ago & grew them all to flower. From memory, about 6 or 7 bloomed chimera.
Thank you all for your comments. To tell you the truth I still think that I've got a lot of learning to do. I only started growing violets last year and fell in love with the many leave, flower and color variations. I still can't propagate them but I will get the hang of them eventually...LOL. In the meantime I'll share the pics. Keep a list of which ones you like and once I start propagating them well I'll be sending you plants. I want to order some more plants for my upcoming birthday so I'll have to do a recap of what I have and what I lost last year and then I'll have a good inventory.
Oh, what I meant was that trailers, by nature, sucker much more than other types of violets and therefore, trailing Chimeras produce enough of them to successfully propagate them true without the hassle that regular Chimeras make you go through if they refuse to sucker... LOL
I agree with you, Jamie! Rolando, you should seriously consider showing your Violets!
I agree with you, Jamie! Rolando, you should seriously consider showing your Violets!
I would love to but I don't know where and if there is a society down here. I would love to be able to show my plants and get ribbons. I might not be so good at growing orchids but I can grow some gorgeous violets.
Olaf, I love that sinningia pusilla. I have seeds from you germinating but pusilla and musicicola haven't germinated yet. Country Tiger F3 and Eumorpha 'Saltao' have germinated. There's more that 14 Country Tiger so far. And Saltao only two. I keep checking every day. LOL
I actually haven't sown a single one of the 'Country Tiger' F3 but I'm glad to hear that they're germinating so well. :)
S. eumorpha "Saltao" usually germinates over a period of about two to three weeks once the first one gets started. That's normal. I have sown a test batch of this about three weeks ago and they're now just getting started.
I have had the micros take anywhere from 3-4 days to 3-4 weeks to germinate. They can be a little erratic in this regard... Don't give up! They'll get there soon! :)
So I was going to wait until Spring for to order more plants but I couldn't. My birthday is in just a couple of weeks so I got myself a birthday gift from Rob's Violets. Now I might also need to get another 4 tier stand as the one I purchased I full already. They are all African violets as I did order Sinningias from another vendor. Here is the list. They are all Russian violets.
Cosmos Legend 2
EK Cherry Blizzard
EK Scarab - New!
EK Sea Star - New!
LE Adagio - New!
LiK Nobleman - New!
Snow Edelweiss - New!
Thank you Jamie. I can't wait for them to get here. They shipped today so I should be getting them tomorrow. Now from tomorrow to blooming it will be usually 2 weeks. Looking forward to the blooms !!!! And will share them here.