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Australian and New Zealand Gardening: BROMELIADS FOR NOVICES & ADDICTS JULY & AUGUST 2012, 1 by splinter1804

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Forum: Australian and New Zealand Gardening

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splinter1804 wrote:
Hi everyone,

Well the rain’s stopped and it’s a beautiful sunny morning with all of the local birds singing their heads off. I hope everyone who has been unwell is now on the improve and looking forward to spending more time among their brom’s.

Shirley – Another suggestion for your unnamed dark mini comes from a N.Z. grower who says: “Could be 'Tar Baby' Nev, though leaves may look a bit wide.”

Mike – Pretty well all of the plants from that cross are around the 12” - 18” diameter except for just two which were only about 6” across. You’ve posted pic’s of two of my favourite brom’s today and the ‘Break of Day’ in my opinion is one of the best small Neo’s going around and if you grow it in maximum light (I hang mine right up under the beige shade cloth) you can even get a nice golden yellow hue through the leaves, similar to Neo. ‘Jewellery Shop’.

I couldn’t agree more with what you told “Deadly Night”, but you omitted to say that it is a chronic disease called “bromeliaditis” for which there is no cure. One can only treat the “symptoms” which entails buying more and more brom’s at every opportunity and sticking rigidly to the brom growers’ saying of “there is always room for one more”.

Shirley – You say you have given some thought to growing some brom seed but doubt you have the patience. Let me just say that it’s really very simple, well worth the trouble, inexpensive to do and very exciting as you await the results. It’s well worth a try and if you send me your Email address I can send you some notes which describe a simple method of growing them. The same offer goes for anyone else who would like to have a go. Remember that old saying, “nothing ventured, nothing gained”.

Re. the light requirements to maintain the colour in your little “black” mini, it’s a bit hard to say; I have some plants of Neo ‘Midnight’ (previously called ‘Voodoo’) which if grown in very shady conditions will remain dark but as the light is increased, more and more green appears on the foliage. On the other hand I have a very dark burgundy coloured Neo which needs bright light (almost full sun) to maintain the dark colouring. I think it’s best to watch the foliage colour closely and if it starts to change you will need to keep changing the location until you find the right spot, really a case of” trial and error”.

I’m still posting old pic’s of plants and hopefully they aren’t ones I’ve posted before. The first one today is Neoregelia ‘Mini-Con’ and as the name suggests, it looks just like a small compact version of Neo. concentrica and is only about 8” across. The second one is the ever popular Neo ‘Gold Fever’ which when grown in good light will repay you with bright colours. Third is a medium sized Vriesea called ‘Orange Sundae’ which stays in colour for some months and is just the right size to bring into the home for a bit of floral colour. Next is Neo. ‘Fairy Tale’ and finally Neo. ‘Orange Glow’ NOVAR. For those who don’t know it, Neo. ’Orange Glow’ is usually a variegated plant which occasionally will throw a pup without variegations; this is why the addition of NOVAR to the name, meaning that it’s still ‘Orange Glow’ but with NO VARiegation.

All the best, Nev.

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