Bromeliads for novices and Addicts - Dec 2012

Coffs Harbour, Australia

Hi Nev, I'm back. You're right! I wait until I see your finger poised over the send button, and I post!
I am back because I promised to get back to Bree about the botanic gardens. Bree, unfortunately the glass house isn't open on weekends, because of a theft some time back. Only the rare bromeliads were taken. There are no gardeners present on weekends to keep watch, hence it is only open weekdays. However, there is a 10am tour of the gardens, on the third sunday of every month, and Ros, who feilded my phone call, made a suggestion to remind the tour guide to take the key for the glasshouse, as it is a long walk back to the front office if they forget.
you can peep through the windows of the glasshouse, but it is not the same. Ros also mentioned that they often don't label the plants until they are established, as they noted plants with labels were often theived first. Once established in the ground, they are a bit harder to remove. Sad eh?
Anyway, stinking hot outside, and I have lawns to mow. I'd like to leave it until later, but there are some black clouds hovering about, and i don't know if they will hold off. I did get a bit of potting done,and washed some pots as well.
Can anyone ID these plants for me?
First, is photo one Aechmea fendlerii?
photo two, which Aechmea is this?
photo three is the same plant.It is large-ish. Sorry the flower isn't mature yet. If they don't sell this weekend, I will be able to post a photo as it grows.
Now, photo four is a fairly widely grown one, I just can't rmember its name.

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Brisbane, Australia

Hi all, I am still catching up on earlier posts so I’m a bit behind in my responses

Nev, Trish, I have neo Grace x Break of Day but it is quite different to the one you posted, Trish. It’s a large grower, pink and blotchy … not as nice as your ‘gold form’. I’ll post a pic of an older pup and I have a couple more which are almost large enough to remove if you’re interested. I also found a couple of good sized pups on a neo which is named chlorostricta F2X which is quite attractive and it’s nice underneath too. I have two pups if anyone wants one.

Sue, everything is going well in the garden and shadehouses. And no, we haven’t done all of the Xmas shopping yet, it’s all just too hard. The shopping centres this time of year are mayhem, and parking an ordeal. We have sent off the gifts for the grandkids interstate and overseas but have been slack in shopping for the three who live locally.

Sue, you will have to sneak off without hubby next time so you can do your shopping in peace. Good luck with your sale tomorrow, hope the weather is kind. Gee, it’s hard to believe that anyone would be low enough to steal plants from a glasshouse in botanic gardens, and how brazen must they be. But then, I guess anyone looking on would assume they were employees rearranging or replacing exhibits … unbelievable.

We’re off to buy a new TV tomorrow as one of the two we have going most nights tossed it in last night. We don’t watch a lot of TV as this time of year it’s mostly crap anyway, but gee, when it’s not there you really miss it. We watch the one that went bung from the kitchen while getting dinner ready or clearing up and it’s usually news time or current affair which we like to watch. Michael also records from it while we are watching the other one in the family room and it can’t be seen from the kitchen so we’ll have to replace it.

We went to Sizzlers for lunch today with our neighbours and overindulged somewhat, actually it was more of a pig out. We came home and had a nap and I won’t need to eat again till tomorrow ... I think a cuppa will suffice for dinner tonight.

Anyway, it’s after 7:00 pm so I might go organise that cuppa now.

Hi to Wendy, Jen, Ian, Bree, Colleen ... I might be back later.

Pics 1 and 2 are neo Grace x Break of Day, pics 3 and 4 are neo Chlorostricta F2X

Bye for now, Shirley

This message was edited Dec 14, 2012 9:38 PM

Thumbnail by works4me Thumbnail by works4me Thumbnail by works4me Thumbnail by works4me
Brisbane, Australia

Oops, guess I resized that last one twice. I'll try again ...

While I'm at it, pic 2 is the first pup from my Skotaks Tiger ... I have another coming along nicely and pic 3 is my lovely Groves Red Tiger pup, thanks to Wendy.

Bye now, Shirley

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Hi all, seems like my plants moved last weekend like their new position. Well at least they show no signs of wind or sun burn. I dug some of the pots in to the garden soil today and watered these. This is to save on water and make the plants more stable against falling over.More to do tomorrow and I will add some mulch as well.
I have decided that i like Twotone as a juvenile more than as an adult plant, just my taste. I would like to see juvenile stars and bars knowing what the adult plant looks like.
Sue, I don't know enough to confirm or deny Ae fendleri, but i have posted a pic of mine, taken this afternoon. It certainly has different colours and the spike on mine is taller. Mine is growing in full sun and that could be all the difference. The flower looks right though.
I wonder if pic 4 of yours could be Ae chianti of some sort. anyway that is enough from me.
Have a good one
Pic 1 Ae fendleri
Pic 2 Neo red gold
Pic 3 Neo Red macaw
Pic 4 Neo correa arrujoi

Thumbnail by ianperry Thumbnail by ianperry Thumbnail by ianperry Thumbnail by ianperry
north coast nsw, Australia

Thanks alot for finding that out for me Sue. Bummer the gardens are not open on saturday and thats defenatly low to steal from them. Well im not working today so might have to come to your sale Sue. Just need to go outside and water my orchids now and get ready. We stayed up all night with my family having our early xmas dinner (my partner had to go to work this morning and wasnt impressed) ha!
Love that neo Chlorostricta F2X Shirley.
Trish ohh cool thanks!, i thought i did D-MAIL you, i'll do it again, love your two tone pics.

shellharbour, Australia

And another good morning to all of my “Brom. Mates” - The air here this morning is very humid and salt laden after an early morning “sea mist” where I couldn't even see my back fence. These mists are something we only get two or three times a year, but they never cease to amaze me; another little quirk of Mother Nature.

Sue – Sorry I can't ID the plants in your first four pictures, probably more chance if the flowers were open, however them's the breaks. The plant in the last pic I think is Ae. 'Royal Wine', a hybrid made way back in 1946 by Mulford Foster by crossing Ae 'Victoriana' Discolour onto Ae. 'Miniata' Discolour. Royal Wine like both of its parents also has discoloured leaves and like any plant with discoloured or burgundy coloured leaves can be a little “cold sensitive”.

Shirley – I like your pic's, especially the one named Chlorosticta F2 and if it's not already spoken for I'd like one of your spare pups please, perhaps we could swap for Neo. 'Broulee Beauty' (Unreg.). It's interesting to see the shape of your Neo 'Grace' x 'Break of Day' as both parents are more compact and smaller plants and I'm wondering where it gets it's shape and larger size from. Looks like a bit of “home work” when I get a chance.

I have to agree with you about the “low life” who stole the plants from the Botanical Garden Glass House. There's always someone who want to spoil it for everyone else isn't there. They don't seem to care that these plants are there for everyone to enjoy and that some of them are quite rare and that's the only place people will get a chance to see them; all thy can think of is how much money they'll get when they sell them on.

Isn't it bloody amazing that electrical appliances always seem to choose the most inappropriate time to die! It always seems to be at a time when we're very busy and money is tight. It happened to us last week when our fridge died, and with Christmas quickly approaching, it could have died at a time when we were less dependent on it, but no; it had to be then.

Ian – I too am in the process of re-locating plants and also have to take steps like you did to stop them being blown over. I'm going to do what I tried for the first time last year and which worked well. Instead of burying the plant in the pot, you bury a second pot of the same size and firm the soil around it. You then sit your plant (pot and all), inside the pot you buried. The end result is it looks just as good, but you can move the plants without and hassles when the time for dividing comes around.

I've had a lot of trouble with wind this past year, especially with the hanging plants which face the south. The strong southerly winds cause them to knock together which causes damage to the leaves. I am currently fitting hinged frames covered with shade cloth to what is the top half of the front wall of the cloth covered roof. This will act as a barrier to the wind and the frames can be lifted up out of the way when it's not windy so everything can still be seen. I'll post some before and after pic's when the job's finished.

Bree – That's bad luck about the botanical gardens for you, but you do now have the chance to go “brom shopping” at Sue's sale, and that can't be bad thing.

A few pic's to finish with now before Sue beats me to the punch (Oh I forgot, she'll probably be too busy with her sale to be writing here today). These plants are all part of the make-over of the south facing area beside the northern fence. It is covered with green 50% shade cloth but unfortunately due to its south facing aspect, it doesn't get the light I would prefer, but then we can't have everything we want can we? Most of these plants are of larger types and are here because they take up too much bench-space in the shade houses. Pic.1 is Neo 'Rosy Morn', Pic.2 is a rather large form of Vr. Fosteriana, Pic.3 is another large one (I forget the name) but to give you some idea, it looks like a huge 'Gold Fever', Pic.4 is an old favourite Vr. Hieroglyphica and is the last of about three hundred I grew from seed a few years back. Finally, this one is also a large Neo and one I don't remember the name of either, but I like the shape and it's just starting to show a bit of colour so I live in hope.

All the best, Nev.

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Brisbane, Australia

Hi everyone, I am posting early tonight … must be due to rising early this morning to go to the local market.

Nev, are you still chasing neo Lime & Lava. At the market, one of the brom sellers had two nice Lime & Lava pups, so I bought both of them … one for me and one for you, if you are still looking for it. If you have already sourced one, no problem, I will keep both or perhaps someone else would like to have it. Anyway, it’s yours for a swap if you want it. It has little marks on a couple of its’ leaves but it’s a nice healthy pup, I will post a pic.

I will try to get a neo Chlorostricta F2 pup and the Lime and Lava (if you want it) posted early next week so that they are not held up with the Xmas public hols.

Bree, if you would like the other Chlorostricta F2 pup, just let me know.

Nev, I know what you mean about electrical appliances, trouble is, we generally find that when one thing goes, two more follow ... so fingers crossed. I shouldn’t complain as we worked out that the TV that died was probably 14 years old and we never once had an ounce of trouble with it. They don’t make ‘em like that anymore. At the risk of hexing myself, our fridge in the kitchen is more than 20 years old and working great. We have another in the games room (actually, it’s more of a storage room for good junk) and that must be getting on to 15 years old. Like I said, fingers crossed.

We got our new TV, they are so much cheaper now than they were a few years ago. We could only go to 32” as it had to fit into a cabinet. We got an LG 32” LED LCD flat screen HDMI TV with all the bells and whistles, for a little over $300.00 and it fits perfectly.

Ian, your neos Red Macaw and Correia Araujoi look quite similar. I have a neo I bought as Correa Araujoi but it’s got spots, a bit like neo Marmorata, maybe it’s incorrectly named. I’ll see if I can find a pic.

I also bought two unnamed broms at the market, an albo marginated neo which I think could be Predator but there are so many that look so much alike … can anyone help me with an ID, please. I also bought an aechmea (I think) and if anyone knows what it is, that would be great. He’s a big fella, about 2 foot high, a lovely maroon-purple-brown colour with silvery streaks and he’s a bit spikey but not overly nasty.

Pics are 1 neo Lime and Lava pup (for Nev), 2 my neo named Correia Araujoi (for Ian), 3 unnamed neo, possibly Preditor ? and 4 unnamed aechmea ?

Anyway, time to think about dinner.

Bye for now, Shirley

This message was edited Dec 15, 2012 7:50 PM

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Hi all I did some deep pot watering today. I had dry tips on some plants and this is a fair indication that the plant is not getting enough water. We have had dry weather and it has been hot as well.
Pic 2 looks like N moby dick, Pic 3 Looks like N predator as you suspect and Pic 4 looks like Hohenbergia correa arrujoi.
No pics tonight
Have a good one Ian

Coffs Harbour, Australia

Hello everyone, posting late as I had a big day with the sale. actually it was fairly quiet, but friends arrived later in the day and we got to talking and ended up going out for dinner.
I met bree today, and she came bearing gifts! Some lovely orchid offsets to add to my collection so we did a bit of a trade. I'm happy with my lot, Bree,how about you? I'm sorry I didn't get to spend a bit more time with you, and of course, after you left it got quiet for hours!
Shirley, I second Hohenbergia correia-araujoi for your fourth photo, and also agree with the third photo being Neo. 'Predator'. How lucky were you to score those N. 'Lime and Lava's?
Your TV sounds like it might do everything, including the dishes! heh heh. Its amazing the new technology.
I also got that lovely weather you wished my way. It was a top day! I even found an interesting brom flowering, but will have to show you a pic tomorrow, as its too dark now.
Ian, I usually put the potted plants into the mulch too, then remove the pots when I know I have the position right. I showed a few new customers that technique too, as they were new to bromeliads and weren't too confident about choosing the right spot for their new purchases.
I had confirmation of A.fendlerii on the one photo,and,the same as nev, A. 'Port Wine' on the other. I knew it as soon as I heard it, as i have had this one for quite some time, just had lost the label many years ago.
Nev, i wish you still had Heiroglyphica seedlings to trade. My giant heiroglyphica is catching the eyes of everyone who sees it, and they all want one. I didn't bother planting any straight heiro seed, but did put down some crosses.It will still be a few years before any of them will be ready for sale. Have you got any interesting seedlings to trade for N. 'Cockabell'? I might wait until after New Years before sending any plants, in case there is a hold up with the large volume of Xmas mail.
I look forward to seeing what you do with the hinged wind protectors. My next project is getting hubby to cut a window in my potting shed (shipping container) to let the light in, and the hot air out. I got delivery of a big, second hand, stainless steel kitchen sink, with long bench attached, which will be ideal for washing up the pots and having a nice clen area to stack and store them. So project number two will be getting the water connected to it.
Anyway...yawn.....time for beddy byes as I have had so much fresh air and sunshine that I am beat!
will drop in later tomorrow (watering and putting away to be done in the morning)

HI everyone.
I played with the new phone last night and whatever I did the contacts transferred across. My daughter in law Jess, said there is a program called 'BUMP' and if loaded you can bump 2 phones together and the contacts transfer. Not sure if this is what happened or not. maybe the numbers were saved to sim and therefore came across with it. Anyway I had a phone call on it today and I couldn't even answer it. These smart phones are smarter than me obviously. I was tapping the answer buttone when I should have been sliding it across the screen. Now why didn't I know that????? Lucky Jess came to show me how to do it a bit later. It was only my son Chris on the phone trying to see if we were home.

Nev the seedlings we got were mostly heiroglyphica but at least 2.5 years of growth so saves us growing them from seed. We also got a heap of red chestnut again 2 years of growth. I got some species seed from Ross on the proviso that I grow them and give him back some of the seedlings. That's a couple of different ones now that I am growing for him. I told him I will probably have to give him a heap of pitcairnias when they grow as I know I'm not going to have the room to grow them. I'm also over them already. They look a bit messy most of the time and only look nice when they flower. anyway I am growing lots of seed to share with Ross now. Latest lot is ae arapensis. see pic 1. this is sometimes called 'the club' as it makes a good weapon with a hard woody stem with solid hard infloresence on top. I wouldn't like to be clubbed on the head with this one. We also got a very good sized pup of this from down the back of the property with lots of roots on pup so it will take off immediately.

our auction wins were from Gray's online auctions. I have purchased a lot of stuff from them and mostly at really great prices. I got carried away last night and before I knew it I had bid on over $1,000 worth of items. now I am sitting here hoping someone will outbid me on some of them. The ones that caught me out were some planter boxes we saw when we were over there and when I bid on them I thought I was bidding on 19 of them at $9 the lot but didn't realised I had bid on them at $9 each. to make it worse I put in an auto bid with maximum bid of $19 so I'm probably going to be stuck with some expensive used pots. they were listed in 3 different lots grouped by colour and I didn't put auto bid on last 2 groups so thankfully I've been oubid on one lot (phew that was lucky). Anyway I'm now the proud owner of 15 packets of 1,000 in each packet of zip ties in 3 different sizes .... 5,000 of each size. Winning bid of $14 so not bad. so wire and now zip ties. if we have to put up another shadehouse we'll be right for those items. they are things we use a lot of so bargains.

Nev did I tell you I tickled a flowering billbergia foster's striata with quesnelia lieboniana and got 1 ripe pod on the billbergia which is growing. 5 nice seedlings. today I noticed one quite plump berry on the quesnelia so the tickle must have worked both ways. will watch for it to ripen completely. anyway now keen to tickle the tim plowman with something. can you suggest anything Nev???? we have quite a few aechmeas flowering at present so might try a few of those.

Shirley, I also love your chloristicta F2. it has a lovely shape and colour. Pic 2 is hoenbergia correa arrujoi so you can compare with you NOID pic 5. I agree with Ian that is what it is.

Oh I saw Santa in Bunnings today and he gave me a bag of mixed lollies which I've just finished last one. don't remember eating them all but just had last one so I must have. whole packet. damn there goes the diet again. damn you Santa. I should never have accepted them but I told myself they were for Emily but I didn't give them to her today when she was here. Damn damn damn.

ah well. CSI is over now so time for bed.
Night all

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north coast nsw, Australia

Oh yes please Shirley on the Chlorostricta F2 pup (do you already have another for yourself?). I'd guess that 3rd brom is Wild Gossip but as you said theres heaps of ones that look like that.
Sue- im very happy with the broms, after i left i went and bought 2 big clay pots. I understand you couldnt stop and chat you did have a few people to sell plants to while i was there. Hope your sale went well! You have heaps of nice broms Sue, i could have bought one of each but i dont have the room for them. thanks again!!!
Yes Nev im one of the people that loved Sues massive heiroglyphica, its awsome.
1. Got this one from Sue, is it Amazing Grace or something else Sue?
2. Look at the weird markings on this one, tagged Pot of Gold but doesnt really look like that?? mines colour seem alot more maroon then red.

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shellharbour, Australia

Hi again everyone, another nice morning down here and hopefully another productive day in the garden coming up.

Shirley – Following what I said yesterday about your plant of Neo, 'Grace' x 'Break of Day', I followed up the past breeding history on the BCR and in the FCBS Photo Index. Unfortunately I still can't answer the question of why it is such a large “open” plant. Neo. 'Break of Day' was made by crossing Neo 'Maid of Honour' with an unknown pollen parent.

If we trace back the 'Maid of Honour' breeding line, we find that it is a result of crossing 'Ruby Jean' with Sarmentosa. As Sarmentosa is a smallish species I don't think the large size comes from there so I went back to look at what made up 'Ruby Jean'; this was the result of a crossing between Neo Chlorosticta (a smallish species) and Neo 'Fireball' (again a smallish plant) so I don't think the large size come from here either.

Neo. 'Fireball' is really an unknown quantity as far as breeding goes, some say it's a species and others say it's a hybrid. It originally came into America in 1960 with a shipment of bromeliad species for Nat De Leon from a Mr. Walter Doering of Sao Vicente Brazil and was at that time unidentified. As the years went by, Ralph Davis who was a “brom buddy” of Nat De Leon gave the plant a “pet name”of 'Fireball' because of its colour and this name seems to have stuck until this day. The plant still hasn't been formally identified or described and as this puzzle has been going on unsolved now for 52 years I don' think I'm going to find the answer either.

All the history known about the plant's parents point to smallish, more compact plants, so the puzzle still remains about where the large open size of your plant came from. Does anyone here have any answers or suggestions?

Yes I am still chasing Neo 'Lime and Lava' and would be more than happy to swap with you, and thanks for thinking of me.

Isn't it a coincidence, the new fridge we bought was an LG (Life's Good) brand as well. When the old one died, I rang up the bloke who has always serviced our white goods over the years. He is now retired, but will still do house calls to some of his long time customers, (says it keeps him in pocket money). Anyway when I asked what brand I should get, he said they are all mostly made in China now even the well know brands we have used for years, but his advice was based on the amount of times he was called to repair these appliances and he said without a doubt LG was the brand to get as he never has to repair any.

From what I've seen of Neo xCorreia-araujoi, the colours do vary considerably but the one thing that I have found with all of the ones I've seen is they are all big plants (3 feet+ across) with nice wide, thick leaves. I have one which has all of these great features except the colour which unfortunately isn't anything to write home about, see Pic.1. On the other hand the colour in yours I think is great and it should grow into a beautiful big plant. It can sometimes be similar in colour and size to Neo 'Moby Dick' as Ian says, but the leaves of my Neo 'Moby Dick' aren't as thick or as wide and that's an obvious difference.

As for your albo-marginated NOID, yes it possibly is Neo 'Predator' (Pic.2), which is widely spread around Australia and sometimes confused with a sport from it called Neo. 'Predatress' (Pic.3) also widely grown. These come from a grex which was made by C. Skotak by crossing Neo. ((carolinae x 'Painted Lady') x 'Takemura Princeps') x carolinae with Neo. 'Dark Spot'. [You'd need a long name tag to write that name wouldn't you?]. At first glance they look very similar but when you look more closely you will see that the leaf margins of Neo. 'Predator' are albo-marginated and those on Neo.'Predatress' are not.

Although not as widely spread around the country, there are also other “look-alikes”, and just four that I know of are Neo. 'Hot Gossip', Neo. 'Wild Gossip', Neo. 'Garnish and Neo. Milagro all which are more commonly grown in Northern NSW and Qld.. To add to the confusion even further, the BCR tells us that Neo. 'Hot Gossip' was previously known as Neo. Anna #40.

I have to agree with Sue and Ian about your final NOID, I too thought it was a Hohenbergia but which one I didn't know as I don't grow them. The thing is, now you have it and Neo xCorreia-araujoi, you now have to be able to pronounce the name!

Ian – Nice to see you drop in today even though you don't have any pic's for us, but your tip about the dry leaf tips is well worth remembering.

I was given a little tip a long time ago and that was........ “Brown leaf tips means not enough water” and “yellow leaf tips means too much water”. This is a good indicator of possible problems.

Sue – First let me correct you when you said, “the same as nev, A. 'Port Wine' on the other“, it wasn't Ae. Port Wine, it was Ae. 'Royal Wine' (maybe you've been at the Port Wine or you're getting it confused with the Port Wine Magnolia) Ha! Ha!

You mention Vr. Hieroglyphica seedlings, I was tossing up whether to grow some more from seed or not, but the lack of space answered the question for me. I found them very easy to grow from seed though and quicker than some of the other Vrieseas I grew and for a young “chick” like you I think it would be a very worthwhile exercise as they are always easy to sell. I grew two batches, about six hundred in the first and three hundred in the second and sold them all except the one I have left. They weren't sold to commercial growers either; they really just seem to sell themselves when people see them especially if you have a pic of a nice large specimen to show what they will grow into. I had a visit from a friend and a Dutch lady who had just joined our Bromeliad Society and she wanted one of these Hieroglyphica seedlings but she had already spent her allowance on other plants, so I gave her one in a five inch pot and as a joke I said, “if you grow this well you will win a prize with it'. Two years later she won the prize for the best Vriesea in the Novice Section of our show and you couldn't have seen a more proud and happier grower. In my opinion it is still the “King” of the Vrieseas.

Wendy – I too grew some Pitcainias from seed and like you I was quickly over them also. These ones were very untidy looking plants and in my opinion looked like just “so much grass” and something I would call a “nothing plant”; but then beauty is in the eye of the beholder, isn't it?

Your Billbergia ' Foster's Striate' x Quesnelia Liboniana could be very interesting. The resulting seedlings from this particular bi-gereric cross are called xBillnelias. For years I've often though about trying to cross a Ques. Liboniana with a 'select” Billbergia as they seem very similar in form and I knew they would cross as it has been done before and there are five or six already registered on the BCR. But most have used Bill 'Nutans', (nothing special in my opinion) See:

As for crossing Ques. Tim Ploughmn with something else, I have seen quite a few results of this cross done by others and all it seemed to achieve was to produce a dull coloured plant minus the attractive curled leaves of the Tim Ploughman. They say for a cross to be successful, the resulting hybrids should be better than the parents either in colour, size or shape; these seedlings didn't meet any of this critera. Don't let me put you off though as you never know what will come out of the next seed pod as hybridising rules are being broken every day. I would suggest you look through the BCR and see what has been done before; this should give you an idea if it's worthwhile or not. There are crosses registered with Ques. Marmorata crossed with various Aechmeas resulting in xQuesmeas. As Ques. Marmorata is a parent of Tim Ploughman, this may be a cross worth trying. Anyway, have a look at the BCR and you will have a better idea of what to do, there's no point making the same mistakes of others is there?:

Bree – Yes the plant in your first pic is Amazing grace and a very nice brom it is too. As for the colour change in your second plant, that may just be due to the degree of light it was grown under. I don't have this plant nor of I know of it but as we all know, colours can vary in various positions in our own yard.

To finish off this morning, firstly for Shirley; a pic of my Neo. xCorreia-araujoi (to compare with her plant) Also for comparison are the next two pic's of my plants, firstly Pic.2 Neo. 'Predator' which although it's just a pup the differences in the leaf margins with , Pic.3, Neo. 'Predatress' is very apparent. The next two are not my pic's nor plants but show a couple of look-alikes. Pic.4 Neo 'Garnish' and Pic.5 which is Neo. 'Hot Gossip'. What you need to take into account is that if all of these last three plants were grown under similar cultural conditions in the same area, they could look very similar.

All the best, Nev.

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Townsville, Australia

Hi Everyone!

Yes finally it’s the weekend – hooray!

It was pretty late by the time I finished work, went home got changed and went grocery shopping. We did not get home until 9pm and ate late, so best I start this thread and send it off sometime over the weekend as we are up early tomorrow as I want to get Gingers in the mail to Nev and Shirley and then we have to head into town and go present shopping for both Joe and I, we will more than likely just look at buying something we need rather than trying to think of what to buy one another.

Hi Shirley, I am so pleased to hear how excited you are about receiving the gingers I am posting tomorrow. I plan to cut the dying flower head that has all the ginger seedling growing from it, the height of each seedling is about 15+ cm each seedling but they are fast growing once they are in the ground and in the right location. Shirley / Nev, like with all small seedlings be careful not to burn them with heavy manures or fertiliser, less is more until they settle and commence growing in the spot or pot you have planted them in, once they become more established you can look at feeding them per my cultural notes. Remember Gingers luv heaps of water.
Shirley / Nev, further to above I did manage to get the Gingers posted off to you Saturday morning – yeah!

Yeah Shirley I still have you down for a pup of Two Tone, my little book reads 25/09/12 Shirley really likes Two Tone, send Shirley a pup when I have spare DON’T FORGET. I always laugh when I read the notes I leave myself. Shirley I will check on the weekend and see if there are any pups, the mum is in the retirement village and her original pups are in the garden somewhere, when I first brought the plant it had mother and two pups all in the same pot and I managed to salvage the mother before she got too bad but she is pretty beat up now and there is nothing of her but I said to Joe I will possibly get another pup off her if I keep and look after her. I will see if any of them have had pups, they last time I checked they hadn’t but you never know given another week has passed. Shirley I checked on Sunday morning but still no pups yet, I will let you know as soon as I see some pop up.

Shirley thanks I would absolutely luv a pup from your beautiful Galactic Warrior and Grace x Break of Day but only if you can spare any. I luved the pics you posted of both of these broms.

Oh Shirley before I forget I will email you with the Ginger Cultural notes as I thought this would be best that you have an electronic copy to keep. You have already D-Mailed me with your email address thanks.

Hi Bree great I will get the NOID pup organised for posting after Xmas and see if I can find anything else big enough that I can send you at the same time.

Hi Nev I like all the brom pics you posted these past couple of days, especially Neo Garnish with that deep purple/pink fleck that really catches my eye.

Hi Sue thanks so very much I received the Ae. Orange form you kindly sent me on Friday but I have some sad news to share with you, it had a broken neck and I was devastated because I unpacked it ever so carefully so it must have happened on its way to me. I kept saying to Joe ‘what a shame, ‘what a shame’ and he was so sad for me. Anyway Sue I just wanted to say thanks for trying and going to all that trouble, unfortunately I could not stick it back together with anything as there is no coming back from a broken neck for a brom – sad face. I will see if I can track one down at the markets next year sometime.

Hi Wendy, you cracked me up when I read that you ate all off Emily’s lollies, poor Santa gets the blame for everything. I saw Santa on the weekend and all I got was a wave lol so you did well.

Saturday spent half day Xmas Shopping and the other half of the day slaving over a hot stove cooking for our friends, we had 2 x Pecking Ducks with Pancakes, Fried Rice, Steamed Rice, Vegetarian Spring Rolls and Beef & Chilly Spring Rolls, Caesar Salad and Pavlova smothered in fresh berries - yum. By the time I sat down to eat and had a glass of wine or two I was ready for bed lol.

Sunday was spend putting up new shade sail in pool area, hanging new hammock, re-vamped temp shade cover I made for my broms because I was not totally happy with the first one I had constructed and wanted something a bit more sturdy as it will have to take the weight of Avocado’s and mangos falling. I also moved a lot of broms around the garden to get the best out of them colour wise. And hand watered all my broms which was a really nice way to relax and unwind at the end of a busy weekend.

Anyway sorry thread is a bit all over the show today as I am all over the show today; don’t know if I’m Martha or Arthur. Joe has been wonderful helping me with a lot and going out and getting bits and pieces that we need because he knows I have a fair bit I want to do around the house and garden before we break for Xmas.
Sorry no pics today, I will try to post during the week sometime.

Time to get dinner on.

Take care and Happy Gardening Everyone!


Hi all, just potted a few more Bil seedlings today, but mostly a day to sit back relax with a book. I know the forecast is for rain tonight but the weather people have been wrong before.
I am planning to build a crash barrier for my plants and Trish asked for some details. My plan is to have a pipe frame about 6' high with some mesh on top in amongst the trees. The mesh ought to catch the branches and at 6' it would be low enough for me to remove them reasonably easily. It could also cover for more shade as necessary. Just add some shade cloth.
I have been thinking that if and when Tim plowman flowers and if I were to cross it with a Bil it possibly would be either Catherine wilson or Bil harland. Both of the bils have nice red colouring. This is just a thought and I am an experimenter. Colour fromk seed parent, form from the pollen parent. I am not ready to try this as yet.
Have a good one.
Pic 1Neo Moby dick
Pic 2 N painted desert X stormy weather
Pic 3 Acanthrostaccys strobilla seedlings also 2 pots ofCanistrum burchellii
Pic 4 Some tills
Pic 5 Ae Noid,more light more brown

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Hi all
we've been busy potting up seedlings all day again. we had to move all the flowering vriseas and guzmanias from down the side area. these are now living under the large alcantareas, till kruchoffiana and blanchetianas around the yard. when they flower we can pull them back out to be seen. they still get anough light and air and as long as we make special effort to get them all when spraying they should be OK. we did this with some others over the past year and the ones flowering were on sales tables last weekend and went. so we just filled the empty spaces.

anway we now have the side area full of seedlings. some of your larger ones Nev have been promoted to the normal display area with large blue dots on the pots to tell us they are seedlings and not to go out for sale. We have some nice seedlings in this batch. some that I think show promise are a bigeneric nid nana x neo medusa. I loved the colour and shape when I saw the tray and thought "doesn't hurt to ask for some" and was amazed when he said I could have some and how many did I want. so I asked for 10 and got them. I also was intrigued with a cross of ae recurvata v benrathii x ae weilbachii v leodensis. he was disappointed that they seemed to be just plain green and now what he hoped to get from the cross but I'm willing to give them a go. only got 5 of these as they look like they will pup like benrathii so should have heaps out of those 5 seedlings. I also got a till lieboniana variegated from a batch of seedlings. he would only let me have 1 as the rabbits got in and descimated all but 1 tray. I started taking some pics today as I potted them up but the camera is not in here so I'll upload tomorrow night.

I'm off to bed now as I'm really tired. ready for a night in our new bed. slept so well last night in a fresh clean bedroom. so good to do a complete spring clean now and then isnt it?

Night all

Brisbane, Australia

Hi all, well that’s it, another weekend over, only one more before Xmas. We will have to bite the bullet and finish the shopping next week.

Sue, I wish the new TV could at least put the dishes into the dishwasher, but no, it just sits there ... at least the air con can make coffee. Glad you had good weather for your sale.

Wendy, how did you fare with the garden pots on auction. Thanks for the pic of hoenbergia correia araujoi, certainly looks the same and the next pup from neo Chloristricta F2 is yours Wendy, if you want. Mum is getting a bit ragged now but is still producing pups. And we were at Bunnings on Saturday too, didn’t see Santa.

Bree, I will wait till the New Year to send you the neo Chlorostricta F2 and maybe I will have something I can send along with it by then. Your neos Amazing Grace and Pot of Gold are very pretty.

Nev, thanks for doing the research on neo Grace X Break of Day. I think I am ready to accept that mine is misnamed. I think your neo Correia Araujoi (shocker of a name) is quite attractive. Mine is still a young plant, I hope its leaves get as wide as yours. I hope to get your two neo pups in the post tomorrow.

Ian, thanks for the ID on my broms. Hope you get some rain soon. Your neo Moby dick is similar to my neo Correia Araujoi but the C-A appears to have wider leaves, as Nev said.

Trish, thanks for sending the gingers, looking forward to getting them and trying my hand at growing them. No hurry for the neo Two Tone pup and since you have written DON’T FORGET into your notes, I’m happy, thanks :o) The Galactic Warrior pup needs to get a bit bigger yet and I’m thinking my neo Grace x Break of Day might be misnamed. You’re more than welcome to a pup if you still want one, but, another NOID I fear.

Really sorry to hear that your Ae Blanchietiana arrived with a “broken neck” Trish. I’m not sure what you mean by that, but it doesn’t sound too good. I think some of the posties are pretty rough with parcels as a few plants I have purchased on eBay have arrived in pretty poor condition.

Trish, if you have any leftovers from your dinner, I’d be happy to take them off your hands, especially the spring rolls and pav, two of my favourite foods ... yummm

Anyway, it’s nearing midnight so I had better finish up (before I turn into a pumpkin). Pics are two of my recent buys from Wendy, 1 neo fairy floss and 2 neo purple sand.

Bye for now, Shirley

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Coffs Harbour, Australia

good morning all,
Trish, I am amazed that your plant arrived broken! I think I had written 'live plant' all over the parcel didn't I? I guess when all I am relying on is a cardboard box to protect against Aussie posts mishandling, what can we expect? It would get a bit expensive to package things in metal boxes eh? I'm guessing it was broken above the stolon? I can always post you another, but it will have to wait until after Xmas now, as I imagine the post is crazy, and the postal employees are all getting a bit careless as the workload increases.
Ian, I am thinking the same for your seeds and Aechmea 'Fosters Favourite Favourite'. Its only a couple of weeks before the holidays are over and the seeds are only JUST ripening, so can stay in the pods another couple of weeks, no problem.
Your mesh idea sounds viable. I would need a mountain of mesh to do the same thing here. What I really need is a bark catcher, as I am sick of picking it up. I have big black bins around the yard at the moment, and try to collect bark as I pass, then empty the bins onto the bonfire when they are full. I need to start a new bonfire pile too, as it is about as big as I'd like it.
shirley, what brand of aircon have you got? I'd like one of those. I think your two new pink broms look gorgeous.
Wendy, your bigeneric seedlings sound quite interesting. Were they in the batch from Ross'?
I'm not a fan of Quesnelia liboniana. I like the flower, but find the leaves mark badly here. Could it be the cold? I wonder what you will get from the cross?
Trish, did you use your hammock as temp shade? Is that what will catch the avocados and mangos? I love hand watering my broms too. Its a good way to keep an eye on them and see any problems before they get out of control, and to weed them, and to see who is coming into flower or pupping. It takes me at least an hour a day to water through each section of my collection. Its very therapeutic.
I agree with Shirley. i would love some of your left overs! I was treated to dinner out, last night, and our hosts cooked a chicken in a bbq. It was devine, not to mention the pavlova that followed, served with kiwi fruit, banana and frozen berries! yumm!
Nev, I heard a story that Hot gossip, milagro, and predator are all the same plant, just imported into different stables, so registered with different names? I don't know how true that is.
Yes, must have been thinking about wine! I think I had an ID on it somewhere else, with 'Port Wine' and it sounded familiar (I have port wine magnolias in the garden) so it stuck in my head. Thanks for sorting me out. I may, or my not have realised my mistake when labelling :-/
Thank for giving Bree the nod on N. 'Amazing Grace'. I should have labelled it for her. It was crazy around the time she visited, but dropped off to nothing shortly after.
Bree, I'm glad you are pleased too, and like Nev, know nothing about your Neo. 'Pot Of Gold'. There are so many of the red and gold ones around that I can't give a definite ID on any of them!
Yesterday, Hubby and I and a friend went for a lovely motorcycle ride in the country, and caught up with our restorers group, by accident, at a local tea house, so it was a lovely morning.
I had been up earlier in the day, and cleared up the plants before doing a deep watering. I plan to begin the fortnightly fertilise today. It will take me all week, as I use the watering can. I will have to try a new method one of these days!
Photo one is Aechmea maruensis. I've had it for a few years, and it was under the trees gathering leaves, so when i saw the bloom, time to repot and clean it up!
Photo two is Alc. brasiliana flowering. It started on saturday morning, and Alc. extensa also flowered on the same day. I am not crossing them, as i don't think one would improve the other.
Photo three is Alc. extensa in flower. They have one bloom on each branch, at a time so they should be in flower for some time yet. I am self pollinating both if anyone would like some seed later next year?
Photo four is another Aechmea needing identification. Any ideas?
Photo five is the new pup on Aechmea 'Red Bands' how I wish it stayed this colour.
well, better go and check my typing and speling, then send this post off to you.
till tomorrow

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shellharbour, Australia

Hi everyone – Here we are again at the start of another week. We had our annual Christmas BBQ and get-together at a good friends house with a few old close friends yesterday afternoon and passed the time reminiscing an It was really enjoyable watching all of the grand kids running around playing and playing in the pool as well.

Trish – We didn't have any trouble wondering what to buy each other for Christmas as our fridge had just died so we gave each other half of a fridge for a Chrissie present, not exactly a surprise but something we both needed.

Thanks for going to the trouble of posting the ginger to us before Christmas, I can now look to mine as a Christmas present. The only thing you didn't send was an invitation to your Chinese/Australian style banquet; it makes my mouth water just reading abut it.

I like your idea of a retirement village for your old Mother Plants, I must do that for mine. I currently have the “Maternity Ward” for the freshly sown seed in their containers and then the “Pre-School” once they are large enough to be thinned out into other containers of about 15 plants. From here they go to the “Kindergarten” and then to the “Primary School” and finally the “High School”. I think a “Retirement Village” will complete the system well.

I once read an article called “Look After Your Mums”, and was written at a time when most growers would just take off the first pup and toss the mother plant away. The author of the article explained that if you re-potted the mother and gave her a good feed of fertiliser she would often go on to produce multiple pups. Being new to brom growing and eager to quickly build up my collection I followed his advice and have done this now for years. I often thought about calling that area the “Production Line”; however as I'm now running out of space I sometimes wonder if it was such a good idea after all.

Gee that was bad luck about someone breaking the “Blanchie's” neck. Don't be too quick to toss it out though, firstly try standing the base of it in the water filled vase of one of your larger brom's and if after a few weeks it doesn't seem to be rotting, pot it up and give it weekly applications of Condy's Crystals with sufficient dissolved in water until the water is a dark pink colour. I've heard of this working for others but have never tried it myself so I can't guarantee it.

Ian – I'll be interested to see what you and Wendy turn up with your bi-generic crosses of Bill's and Quesnelias. What I have noticed about all of the crosses registered so far is that the Bill parent in all cases was a species and species without any spectacular leaf markings. So possibly worth trying Bill Hallelujah as it's a beautifully marked plant and also a known breeder which passes on its colour.

On the BCR in the section on xBillnelias, there are also a few notes; don't be put off when you first start reading them as some are in German but there is a translation in English further on. Below are the three addresses with the notes:

Ian, what is the diameter of your Neo 'Moby Dick'? I have a large plant which looks very similar and I was initially led to believe it was a species (Bower Birds stole the original name tag and I can't remember the name) but it looks very similar to yours. (see plant in picture 3 in my post of Dec 14th.) It is growing in a lower light area and the pic isn't too good but I'll try and get a better one to post.

I also like your plant of Neo. 'Painted Desert' x 'StormyWeather', it's a nice plant with what looks like naturally glossy leaves and once again the “tell tale” Concentrica markings (this time Concentrica 'Plutonis') are in evidence on the leaves.

It's great to see you growing brom seed and I know like the rest of us you are eager to learn and you won't take offence if I do the “school teacher thing” and correct you on a name. It is Acanthostachys strobilacea and I know it's a hard one to get your tongue around but if these seedlings start out life with the wrong name they tend to continue that way, so best to correct it early. I also have a few plants of the other one (Acanthostachys pitcairnioides) which I grew from seed also. It is not as spectacular as strobilacea and has the flowers very low down almost out of sight in amongst the base of the leaves but the flowers are a nice soft mauve in colour. It does however have some nasty little prickles on the leaf edges.

I've heard of wrapping valuable things in cotton wool but this is the first time I've seen it used with bromeliads (your Pic.4), can you tell us the reason?

Sorry I can't help you with an ID for the plant in the last pic. Perhaps another pic in a brighter area would help. My first thoughts were not of an Aechmea but of a xCryptbergia 'Red Bust'. How large is the plant i.e. high and wide and do you know what the flowers are like?

Wendy – Your seedlings of Nid. 'Nana' x Neo. 'Medusa' sound interesting, was it an Allan Ladd cross? It should be worth watching and I'm certainly looking forward to some pic's as they progress. Oh and just one other thing, (although I'm not a Till. grower) I think the Till you mention as Till. kruchoffiana should be spelled Till. Krukoffiana.

Shirley - I'll be looking forward to receiving the Neo pups, a great Christmas present for a brom grower. Please D-Mail me what you would like in return, or a list of some of the plants on your wish list, I may have something here you are chasing. Also I love the colours of the two brom's in your pic's.

Sue – I have found since I have been sending plants in polystyrene boxes, I haven't had any problems. I don't think writing “Live Plants” on the box really helps at this time of the year as Australia Post probably take on temporary staff to help with the Christmas rush and half of them can't read and they don't give a "toss" anyway as they know they'll be gone as soon as the rush is over.

Sue I have the same trouble with the Ques Liboniana down here also, but our Society President who lives only about twenty minutes away at Dapto grows it well. I was thinking my problem may have been the salt air as the ones grown at Dapto wouldn't get any salt air, but then that's just a theory. I've tried growing it in pots, mounted on timber and on trees and the end result is always the same, dead leaves..... bugger!

Sue what you say about Hot Gossip, Milagro, and Predator could well be true as I suspect a fair bit of this has gone on over the years especially when plants have been bought and imported from other countries under the name of just the breeding formula only. The grower in the country of origin names and registers his/her plant and the grower here does the same, but with a different name, just another problem for the BCR to try and sort out one day?

Sorry I can't help you with your ID on the Aechmea but that pup on the Ae 'Red Bands' looks great. Do they always start out his colour or is this one a “sport”, if so it's certainly worthwhile persevering with to try and stabilise it.

I'll finish now as usual with a few pic's Pic.1 is for Ian and is Acanthostachys Pitcairnioides, Pic 2 is Ae. Cylindrata , Pic.3 is Neo Mulford Foster, Pic.4 is Canastropsis seidellii x Canistropsis 'Plum' and finally Pic 5 shows a couple of seedling culls of Neo Thunderbird x destined either for the garden or the bin

All the best, Nev.

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Hi all,Another dry and hot day here. NOt much done other than watering.
Nev My Moby dick is about 40cm across. Tonights pic 1 is one taken in August this year when I bought it form Bowen. It will be a while before I get any bigeneric crosses as I will have to get the plants to flower at the same time. Maybe I will have to save some pollen in the freezer. If it is meant to be it will happen. At least I have food for thought.
Painted desert XStormy weather is growing almost in full sun for most of the day and that surprises me, I would have thought les light would have been preferable. The plant is the boss. I had to move 1 from the back today as it was loosing colour, Too much sun I think.
Thanks for correcting my spelling, relying on memory tooo much. I have a juvenile plant of Acanthostachys Pitcairnoides and I will enjoy seeing it flower in the future. I certainly can see where it gets it's name from, all my Pits have those same low leaf spines.
Pic 2 is another plant that I cannot as yet identify,it has a similar flower to Acanthostachys Pitcairnoides.
Cotton wool, I guess it looks like that, but in fact is filter wool from my fish tanks. I used it to anchor the Til to some mesh. I have used it to start seeds but was to impatient. The seeds germinated but I transplanted them too soon and it was winter. I have also used it to hold potting mix in tree starter pots with cuttings. It holds the soil in and allows drainage until it clogs. Hopefully by then it would be time to transplant.
As for what i thought was a Ae it has Crypt type flowers and it could be a xCryptbergia. It is approx 10" wide and 5 or 6" high. At the moment it has 4 pups with the reddish colour and mumma plant is green. The underside is paler green on on mumma plant leaves and paler red on the pups.
I just noticed scale on this plant and have treated them.
Pic 1 Neo Moby Dick
Pic 2 An unusual plant
Pic 3 Neo Princeps
Pic 4 Neo Rosa Morado

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Townsville, Australia

Hi Everyone!

It’s threatening to rain today with lots of thick cloud cover all around us but still no rain in sight which is a bit of a disappointment. Ah well it has got to rain sooner or later and I like nothing better than gardening in the rain in the middle of summer.

Hi Sue yeah you did write ‘Live Plant’ all over the box, Australia Post can be pretty rough with the post, they broke a couple of orchid flasks right at our front door once, Joe was really peeved with them and gave them an earful. Thanks for your kind offer of another Ae. Orange form, that would be great but only if you can spare one, but can I please get some money in the post to you for going to all that trouble? Yeah the brom was broken at the stolon unfortunately the tenderest part of the bromeliad.

Sue we brought a new hammock for the pool area (not for the broms) to swing in over the holidays as our previous one finally disintegrated and my bum fell through it the last time I tried to swing on it, not a nice feeling swinging on a hammock in your bathers with your bum dragging on the ground OUCH lol. The shade cloth area I was talking about was a temp shade structure that I built over my broms, I decided that it probably would not take the onslaught of falling mangos and soon to fall avocado’s so I rebuilt my original design with stronger stakes that I hammered deeper into the retaining wall, it should last a good couple of years which is what I am after and I am just going to leave it in place rather than taking it down in winter.

Sue how cute is that Ae. Red Bands pup, yeah I agree how nice would it be if it stayed that wonderful color.

Hi Shirley thanks yes please I would still really appreciate a pup from your Neo Grace x Break of Day now found out to be a NOID. I liked the look if it anyway with those long slender leaves.

Shirley / Sue / Nev glad to hear you all liked the sound of what I cooked on Saturday; I had been promising a friend for ages that I would cook her Peking duck with pancakes as she has been reminding me for a good 6+ months that I still have not cooked it for her. Anyway it was nice to see how much they all enjoyed it, even the kids had some as it was a novelty for them to wrap their own pancakes and put what the wanted in them, I was laughing at some of the combinations they came up with and a first time in a long time that they got out of their comfort zones and tried something a little bit unusual to the norm.

Hi Nev although a new fridge does not sound all that exciting for Xmas it is such a necessity that we just can’t do without, and unfortunately this time of year is normally when things tend to break down, never perfect timing. We also have to buy a new dryer before the wet season sets in because it takes forever to get things dry (days) and we can’t afford to be going to work in damp smelly clothes, shower towels take forever to dry.

Nev you are most welcome, I was so pleased that I got the Gingers posted to Shirley and you before Xmas; I hope you get them in time and that they travelled well. If for any reason they don’t look happy please let me know and I will look at getting some more posted in the new year as by then hopefully some more of the old flowers would have thrown some seedlings. I could not dig any large bits out of the garden as they would have been way too large and costly to post but you will be surprised how quick the little seedlings grown, I like to give mine a little sprinkle of some indoor plant fertilizer granules to get the seedlings growing but I usually wait a couple of weeks until they settle down and acclimatize so they can recover from the shock of being transplanted.

Nev yes I agree that by you having a “Retirement Village” for your old Mother Plants that it would definitely complete the system as you say as you already have everything else in order of precedence and this would make it a complete bromeliad circle of life and I can think of nothing more wonderful than that. I really like having a retirement village for my older broms, especially the ones that have lost their lust or have been smashed by something in the garden lol, I normally find I can salvage at least one more beautiful pup out of them before they are ready to go in into my compost bin, even ones with only half a body I have been able to get beautiful pups off, it is just a matter of looking after them like I do with all my other broms, apart from I place them in a sunnier spot in the garden with no shade cover which prompts them to stress and pup quicker than the ones grown under shade cloth. It is really worthwhile doing Nev if you have the room to spare, or if you can’t dedicate a special area for them then it is easy enough to pop one here and there in the garden and they are easy enough to find because they look so drab compared to the others. Nev that article you read sounds interesting, I too fertilize my old Mother Plants because it can’t do them any harm because they have lost their lust, but I have not got the heart to throw them out until they really look like they need to be thrown out. For now I have the luxury to be able to do this because I have the room, maybe one day I won’t but for now I can so I will keep doing this for now.

You know what Nev I kept the Ae. Orange form pup because I did not have the heart to throw it out yet normally when they are broken at the stolon I would because I have never had one come back from this, I will give what you say a try and keep everyone posted, you never know? I just thought they needed the most important area intact from the stolon down which is where all the roots sprout from but this whole area has been snapped off. Joe thought it funny that I put it in a vase but when I came home from work late that night and saw it broken in the box and went ‘what a shame’ I went and got a vase out and popped it in water just out of sympathy for the brom as silly as that may sound and I still have not had the heart to throw it out, especially after all the trouble Sue went in preparing and posting it to me.

Nev I really liked all the pics you posted, especially Pic 4 Neo Mulford Foster, I have not seen this one before and am intrigued by its pretty center and matching flecks through the leaves.

Anyway I better head off, early start in the morning – yawn!

Hi to everyone who may be looking in and Happy Gardening!

Just a couple of pics tonight as I am running out of time:

Pic 1 – Neo Grace x Break of Day (Gold form) – not my picture one I got off the internet, I hope my pup grows up as glorious, so tropical looking in color.

Pic 2 – My Vriesea’s

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Hi everyone.
SHirley thanks for the offer of that chloristicta pup. maybe we can do a swap next time you come over. thanks. I remember Johnny asking Olive when we bought a galactic warrior same time as you, he asked how she got them to grow so big. She told him that you let the pup get a good size on mum before taking it off. you do get less pups but you get a better quality of plant. we already had galactic warrior but Johnny just had to have one of those huge ones at Olives. so now we just have to leave them there till they are big.

Nev thanks for posting those links. I'll check them out. Funny you should say about crossing quesnelia with hallelujah. I found one coming into flower today and have already put it down beside the quesnelia to cross as the flowers open. I also put another dark red one there but can't remember the name. So I'll try both of those and see what I get. I'll have to take Jen there in the new year. we are due for a good brom crawl. might have to make it a few nights and go as far as Coffs to see Sue and Jan Townsend then back up to a few others including Allan. Oh and Nev when I was typing krukoffiana I remember thinking to myself "is it a k or a ch" guess I picked the wrong one.

Nev you were correct in the hybridiser of those xgenerics. One of our customers here last weekend organised for us to visit a friend of his as he told us he had so many large seedlings all desperate to be potted up that he was overwhelmed and almost ready to give them up completely. So we went off to Bangalow to visit his friend as arranged and as soon as I walked in I knew it was Alan Ladd. He lives in the middle of a cow paddock. you have to open the gate and close it again after moving through, then follow a track up, swerving around all the cow pads till you get to a farm house. we parked on the grass in front of the gate and Johnny opened his door and stepped straight into a cow pad. he had to back up a bit to miss it next time he stepped out. I took the camera off Rylee this morning and can't remember where I put it so can't upload the pics I took. however he sent me a pic of some of the 'nid nana x neo medusa' seedlings flowering so pic 1 will be his pic.
pic 2 is xcryptbergia red burst for Ian
pic 3 is xneomea kell. I don't mind this one although the flower could be a bit bigger and more dramatic.
pic 4 is xneomea scorpio. I am liking this one more and more as without realising it the sun moved around and caught one of these in full sun. some of the other plants have burned but this scorpio is just getting more and more red and handling it really well. I'll get another pic tomorrow showing the redder colouring.

I'd better get to bed now as I might head off to Hervey Bay tomorrow. If not tomorrow then definately the next. Have to deliver the presents for the family up there. will be the first visit with no dad to see. Must catch up to my sister though as it looks like this time next year she will be a widow as her husband is not too good. she has been down here in Brisbane with him in hospital but she stays in a motel over northside close to hospital. I didn't even know she was down till I saw my other sister. anyhow if I don't log on tomorrow that's where I'll be.
Speaking of going away. if I don't post the parcels this week I'll leave them to after christmas to allow Aust post to get their act together. I went down today and the lineup was again out the door and round the corner. not going to try to post anything this week.

Night all

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Brisbane, Australia

Hi everyone, how hot has it been today and even now it hasn’t cooled down much. Storms are predicted for tomorrow, but there is thunder rumbling around at the moment, so don’t think it will wait till tomorrow.

Sue, it’s the Daikin that makes coffee … haven’t you seen the ad, obviously you don’t watch enough television. I think it also warms babies bottles, might be something Ian could make use of in the near future.

Nev, I posted your neo pups this morning and have my fingers crossed that they arrive unharmed. I will have to try to get hold of some small styrofoam boxes. I sent you a D-mail with the names of a few of the broms I would like but I have plenty more on my wish list, it’s at least a mile long, so I can send lots more names if you like :o) I like your neo Mulford Foster so that’s another for the list.

Trish, I will get a neo Grace X Break of Day (or whatever) off to you in a few weeks. I should have something else I can add as well by then. I wish my Grace x Break of Day looked like the one in the pic you posted, WOW, nice.

Wendy, a swap next time we’re over sounds good to me. I do remember you telling me what Olive said about the Galactic Warrior pups … are you fertilizing yours. You know, when you talk about xgenerics it sounds like a foreign language to me.

And Wendy, you are right about the line up at the post office, there were so many people posting parcels this morning. Anyway, hope you have a good trip to Hervey Bay, take care.

Pics tonight are 1 a spotty neo NOID, 2 a gorgeous little neo I bought as neo Chantilly,
3 another spotty neo NOID, if anyone can ID the spotty ones, please do.

Bye for now, Shirley

Thumbnail by works4me Thumbnail by works4me Thumbnail by works4me
shellharbour, Australia

Hi everyone - Just the briefest of notes this morning. You see yesterday I was drilling a bit of steel and the drill bit snapped and the broken bit (still in the machine) drilled a hole in my thumb (not quite right through) just below the base of the nail. Ouch!

The problem is, it's still bleeding a bit (the joys of taking Warfarin) and every time I hit a key on the keyboard with that hand it throbs like hell.

I have to see the Doc this morning as I don't think my Tetanus shots are up to date and I think this is serious enough to warrant a "jab". So I might do some replies in short bursts when it stops throbbing.

Best wishes to anyone on the sick list and any other "silly old buggers" like me who by doing silly things, have hurt themselves.

All the best, Nev.

Ha! Ha! Sue, I beat ya today.

Coffs Harbour, Australia

Good morning all,
Shirley, no idea with the spotty ones I am afraid. There are just so many! I do like the Neo. 'Chantilly', it reminds me a little of one here, I have labelled as N. 'Sunday best'
No I havn't seen the Daikin add. Maybe we don't buy enough air cons here, or maybe daikin doesn't have an outlet in Coffs? Never mind. I will you tube it later.
We had rumbly thunder and storm clouds yesterday....twice.....and got 6 drops of rain! Its very gloomy now, but I won't believe it is going to rain untill i see it!
Wendy, I bet that was an interesting visit with Alan? Poor johnny, stepping in a cow pat. Maybe thats why Alan wears those giant monster feet?
Have nice trip to hervey bay. I bet its lovely up there. Will you visit any growers while away?
Trish, that picture of Neo. 'Grace' x 'Break Of Day' is gorgeous. I hope you get the same results with yours, and that it pups as well s N. 'Break Of day' so you can share one with me :-)
Thanks for clearing up the question of the hammock.It must be how i read your post? Was imagining a hammock with shade cloth over it, and full of mangoes and avocados. It would be a bit of a dream actually, especially with avocados being $3 each here!
No need for money to change hands, re our swap. I'm sure when the time comes and you have something to trade, it will all work out even in the end. I like the idea of a styrofoam box, but can't see them making one in the right size, and it would get a bit exxy to send a large box if they cube it for postage. Anyway, I will try to reinforce the sides somehow, but they must have given the box an almighty bend to get the stolon to break. I'll give it another go after xmas.
Ian, I think you are probably a mad recycler! I think fishtank filter wool is probably good for many things, and the few you've listed are all good examples.
Nev, this is the first pup on A. 'Red Bands' so I'm not familiar with how it should look, but i assumed it was the red bands all squished together that are giving it the red colour? I know my A. chantinii pups are darker when small, and then the stripes stretch out as it grows, making it lighter in colour.
It sounds like you had a good time catching up with friends and watching the kids play. Its a nice time of year for that, and for all the yummy food!
You were saying things tend to break down at the worst moment, well, I think our hot water system could be on the verge of failure. the hot water is a funny colour, and smells very metallic. I wonder how hard it will be to get a plumber on the job at this time of year?
Anyway, I will find that out later today I guess.
Yesterday, i played with broms all day, just cutting old mums out of pots with larger pups, and dead leafing things. i also planted up two garden that were crying out for broms!
I suppose i had better get my day underway. the dogs have had a walk, so I'm not entirely slack!
photos are before and after
photo five is mature N. 'Break Of day' on the left and immature N. 'Camelot' on the right.

Thumbnail by weed_woman Thumbnail by weed_woman Thumbnail by weed_woman Thumbnail by weed_woman Thumbnail by weed_woman
Coffs Harbour, Australia

yes, you did beat me nev! But you had to drill a hole in your finger to do it! heh heh. i hope it heals up for you soon,as such a short post does nothing to keep us content!

north coast nsw, Australia

Shirley i love that neo Chantilly and the last NOID, looks like it has scratches on it.
Sue love your photo of break of day and camelot together.

Townsville, Australia

Hi Everyone!

Hi Nev, Oh No you have drilled a nasty big hole in your thumb OUCH! Gosh you have been in the wars with yourself, I bet it would have hurt like hell and the constant throbbing when you put pressure on it must be painful. Be careful not to hit those keys on the keyboard too hard for the next couple of weeks and give your thumb time to heal, although like Sue I much prefer your long threads and am not content with shorter one’s but understand your finger needs to mend and that we must be patient lol.

Hi Shirley, thanks appreciate very much that you are going to post me the NOID in a couple of weeks + something else – how exciting :)

Shirley I liked all the other NOID broms pics you posted but unfortunately I do not know what they are? I have very similar but I suppose slightly different types of NOIDS in my garden with similar coloring that I have not been able to identify but I like them just the same. The Neo Chantilly pic you posted is very cute, is it a mini and does it grow any bigger?

Shirley I will D-Mail you Ginger Cultural notes tonight, I keep forgetting…

Hi Wendy those Nidularium ‘Nana’ x Neo ‘Medusa’ seedlings are really nice, such a deep dark purple, not like anything I have seen before and I like their beautiful glossy long leaves. How big do these broms get?

Hi Sue yeah by all means with Neo Grace x Break of Day (Gold form) I will put you down for a pup, mind you could be waiting awhile though because my pup is just a pup but it is nice and healthy and has grown a little since I first purchased.

Thanks Sue for the kind offer of sending me down the track another Ae. Orange form, I really appreciate you going to all this trouble.

What a bugger Sue that your Hot Water System is playing up, how annoying is it that such necessities seem do break down this time of year.

Sue I really like all your before and after shots of your garden beds, you have plenty of more room by the looks of the after shots and it looks like you could really put some nice large brom plants in these areas as well as a mixture of anything. Will you grow in rows or mix them up a bit? The garden beds also look like they get a good amount of light also and hopefully heaps of shade from the trees in the beds.

You know I just had a panic attack a short while ago as in all my busyness I had forgot to check on my vriesea seedlings in the nursery for a couple of weeks, anyway I raced out there to check on them and they are doing fine and have grown a bit which is great. I have been getting so side-tracked of late with building all these temp shade structures to protect my broms plus all the other stuff we have been trying to get done around the place. Anyway I am relieved they are ok and that they are growing.

Anyway time to put the kettle on.

Catch you all later and Happy Gardening!

Pic 1 – Vr. Angela x Milky Way
Pic 2 – Vr. Frost Bite x White Bands
Pic 3 – Neo. ‘Kings Ransom’
Pic 4 – Neo ‘Chiquita Linda’
Pic 5 – Vr. Altodaserrae

Thumbnail by bromishy Thumbnail by bromishy Thumbnail by bromishy Thumbnail by bromishy Thumbnail by bromishy
Brisbane, Australia

Good evening everyone. No more school for the year so it’s time to stop lurking and start pulling my weight. Hopefully only 6 more months of work and I’ll be able to join the ranks of poor but happy. Then I’ll have no excuses for my slack contributions.
Nev, ouch! Bet that hurt! Hope it heals quickly so you can get back to typing and keeping us up to date with all sorts of info. I really liked your post about hybridising, that the colour comes from the father and the mother influences the shape and size. (Have I got that right?) It’s made me look at my flowering Vrieseas in a whole new light. A while ago you gave me a couple of Dykia seedlings. One of them is showing an interesting lemon middle like Yellow Glow. Photo 1 below.
Trish, like you, I’ve been busy putting up temporary shadecloth. So many broms that have never had sun problems before seem to have burnt this year. Love your Neo Grace x Break of Day (Gold form). Beautiful colours. All of your plants look so big and healthy.
Sue, the grevillea out the front finally died so I had to move all the Guzmanias underneath and replace them with big tough Neos and Aechmeas. Had to split the big one that you called Tutti Fruiti so you are welcome to a pup. I love the way you use your broms as borders. Top colours in your Camelot and Break of Day. The new gardens look good. Sounds like Wendy is planning a brom crawl down your way so hopefully we’ll get down to see everything you’ve been doing early in the new year. Think she’s ticked that I’ve been to Jan’s and she hasn’t yet. Eh Wendy? Had a chuckle at your comment about Alan’s giant feet Yuk! Imagine having to clean cow pats off them. Great that you got to meet Bree and scored some orchids as well. Pity we couldn’t all get together somewhere.
Ian, for someone who’s only been into broms for a few years you’ve certainly gone from Pplates to advanced in a short time to already be crossing genera and growing them from seed. Love your photos. You’ve always got some interesting ones.
Shirley, I love your new ones from Wendy. Purple Sand is one of my favourites. Your first spotty noid looks a bit like my Neo Sun God (Photo 2) but there a lot of very similar ones. Fingers crossed we get some rain. Plenty of rumblings.
Wendy, I’m so jealous of your visit to Alan Ladd. Can’t wait to see all your new goodies. I’ve never been very keen on bigenerics but I like the ones in your photos. Hope you have a good fast trip to Hervey Bay.
Photo 3 is my Neo Blast that started going white about a year ago. It’s flowering now so is flushing pink. Apologies to Sue and Wendy who’ve already seen it on FB. Photo 4 is a pup on a Neo Tiger hybrid. Mum had a couple of stripes on the lower leaves and it looks like they might be coming through on baby. Photo 5 is a Vr Bianca cultivar from Catlan's showing plenty of white. Night all, Jen

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Brisbane, Australia

Looks like we posted at the same time Trish. Love your Vrieseas. I didn't know Vr. altodaserrae (small 'a'for species) so had to look it upon FCBS. It has a beautiful flower. Jen

Hi all, just some watering and packing so that we can go to daughters place tomorrow morning. I have someone here to look after my broms and house. I am hoping for a good trip and will be there for Christmas. I hope my daughter still has the internet working. I am taking her some more plants and hope to get 1 or 2 from her. I left some there last trip in August. Conditions are hot and dry there. It is on the other side of the range. Another mining town called Dalby. I got caught in the floods 2 years ago and do not expect the same this year.
Have a good one
Pic 1 Ae Inky maybe
Pic 2 N Hawaiin sunset
Pic 3 N April
Pic4 N Ruth Wilson

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Brisbane, Australia

Hi all, we had a few spots of rain this arvo and another light shower tonight. Lots of rumbling but that’s about all.

Nev, sorry to hear about your thumb, bet that smarts … the lengths you are prepared to go to just so you can beat Sue to post in the mornings. I reckon she might beat you tomorrow. Jokes aside, I hope you are not in too much pain and it gets better quickly.

Sue, I have so many spotty neos and many of them without a name. Looking at them singly, they all look much the same but when placed together, they all have something special about them that makes them different or is it something different about them that makes them special, whatever!! I still prefer the variegated neos but I seem to be gathering lots of spotty ones lately.

Hope you found a plumber Sue, to fix your hot water system, at least it’s not the middle of winter. We got an email from family living in Arnhem in the Netherlands a couple of days ago with a pic of their thermometer showing -13 degrees … imagine if it was that cold and no hot water … bbrrrr.

Your gardens look so good. Gee, you must get up and get going early, you posted at 6:41 and you’ve already walked the dogs …

Trish, the ginger plants arrived today, thank you so much. When I picked them up from the post office late this afternoon and saw the crushed state of the box I was dreading what I would find inside. Gosh, they must handle parcels roughly this time of year, it looked like someone had stomped on it a number of times. But, good news, the plants themselves fared somewhat better than the box, they look OK. Can I remind you to send the cultural notes please. Thanks again, Trish. I hope the parcel I sent to Nev arrives without damage, I'm wishing now that I had left it till after the Xmas rush.

I would call neo Chantilly a small grower rather than a mini, Trish, I think it’s just gorgeous. Love your pics, especially vr Angela x Milky Way. Vr Altodaserrae is very unusual, I like it.

Jen, great to see you posting again, Love the pics you posted, they’re all beautiful.

Ian, hope you have a good trip to your daughters and a great Xmas in Dalby. Are there two towns named Dalby in Qld, when I think of Dalby I think of the Darling Downs and wheat farming rather than mining. I like your neo April, a bit like Morado. I was about to say your pic 4 looks like neo Kahala Dawn and no wonder, DG playing tricks with pics again?

Hi to Bree, Colleen, Wendy and anyone I’ve missed.

Pics are 1 neo Mandella, 2 neo Blast, 3 neo ? can anyone help me with an ID please.

Bye for now, Shirley

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Coffs Harbour, Australia

Good morning all
Shirley, I meant to say I have stacks of that Noid in your third pic of the previous post. The one bree described as having scratches. It seems to be in almost every collection I have viewed, and always without a name. I've tried getting an Id on the international bromeliad forums, where alot of expert growers frequent, but no success.
As for my early post, thats 6.41 queensland time, so 7.41 here. I do get up early though, usually around the 5.30 mark (thats 4.30 to you) the birds usually sing me wake, or in the case of last monday, a chorus of cicadas..........while it was still dark!
I like the way the leaves curl on your N. 'Mandella. I'm not sure what your third pic might be though. I do like the ones that have contrasting colours. just that bit more interest to them.
I rang a plumber yesterday, to get some advice on the system, and he said it sounds like an annode has gone, and that at its age, its not worth replacing it, but instead should get a new system (I knew that was coming), but that i should get six months more out of the current one, time to research my options. I got his emergency number in case it should fail over xmas, and told him I would hold him to the advice he gave me.
Ian, I too was confused when I looked at the last picture and saw Kahala Dawn. I was sure you had writtn something else. I'm not familiar with N. 'Ruth Wilson' so if you still have computer access, how about another pic? I hope you have a great Xmas in Dalby with your daughter. Will you get into Brisbane while you are there?
Jen, gee, its about time you added your two cents! I like the pup with the variegation. How exciting. When you say 'Tiger Hybrid' is it a N. 'Skotaks Tiger' hybrid?
Your Vriesea 'Bianca' certinly has some white to it. I have to say its one of the nicer ones I've seen!
of course I'd be into a pup of G. 'Tutti fruitti'. I do like the Guzmanias. No spines, big plants and colourful flowers. I wish I could get up and visit. I cannot believe how fast the year went, and I didn't get my promised week up there. Xmas is just around the corner, so I can't see us there this year! You best just hang onto tutti for a bit. I will Dmail you after this.
Trish, thanks for keeping me in mind for a pup. I do realise it will be a little wait, but thats the beauty of bromeliad collecting. There is always something to look forward to in the future.
Yes, I do still have plenty of room for broms in the gardens. I tend to plant in rows, or blocks of threes, and have put a couple of Nevs seedlings in, that shoud grow to be large colourful plants. I have had broms in the surrounding gardens for quite a few years now, so I know the light/shade ratio is pretty much spot on in that area. Unfortunately they do gather alot of debris from the gum trees, so it can become a bit of work as I clean them up about every three months or so. I was told by a wise man to leave plenty of room to walk amongst them, and of course, as they grow, the gaps close, as i have discovered in other areas. i did not plant these last two gardens in pots, but sat the broms into the ground and mulch. The soil was lovely after ten years of debris/mulch breaking down, and still damp from rain we had last week.
I was looking at your V. 'Angela' x 'Milky Way' and wonder why it doesn't look anything like I would expect, (pink). You would think it gets the red from Angela, but then, if Angela is written first, is she not the pod parent, and that is shape and size, yes? And since Milky Way is the second name in the mix, then it is the pollen parent, so influences colour, pink.
I think I am getting the picture
Speaking of pictures
Photo one is Aechmea 'Mend' in the garden.
Photo two is A. 'Mary Brett' growing in lOTS of sun
Photo three is Canistrum aurantiacum, also in quite a bit of light
Photo four is Neo. 'Golden King'
Photo five is billbergia 'catherine Wilson' but doesn't look anything like the photos on the BSI files. I like the curly leaves

This message was edited Dec 19, 2012 6:37 AM

Thumbnail by weed_woman Thumbnail by weed_woman Thumbnail by weed_woman Thumbnail by weed_woman Thumbnail by weed_woman
shellharbour, Australia

Hi All – Well my thumb hasn't dropped off yet so I'm trying a bit of typing with one hand and gee isn't it slow? I'm making an early start (5.00 am) to compensate for using just one hand and I think a snail could type faster. I'll start by responding to yesterday's posts and see how I go.

Ian – Thanks for the feed back on Neo. 'Moby Dick', it looks like the plant I have is wrongly named and it really is Neo.'Moby Dick'. I got this plant from a very knowledgeable grower who said it was a species (can't find the name, maybe the bower birds stole it as it would have been a plastic one), anyway, the point I'm trying to make is that even the experts sometimes get it wrong, which just re-enforces what I've previously said about never trusting the name on a name tag.

It's interesting that you say you found scale on the ?Cryptbergia, I stopped growing this plant because I found that here in my environment it seemed to attract White Scale and Mealy Bug and as I'm very reluctant to use insecticides I “bit the bullet” and got rid of these plants. Just as a bit more info to aid in the ID, I seem to remember the flowers on my plants were (I think) a “bluish” colour with a bit of green.

With your yesterday's Pic 2 (An unusual plant) , is that a white flower with blue margins or is it a flower from an African Violet you've put there just for a joke? The foliage has the look of a Neo so maybe it could be one of the Neo species. I don't think your pic 4 today is Neo 'Ruth Wilson' but is Neo 'Kahala Dawn'

Trish – When I mentioned about “looking after your old mother plants”, I forgot to mention the most important bit of information I had meant to pass on. I got this from one of the professional brom growers who said, as well as the usual fertiliser, it pays to increase the amount a bit as well as putting a “prill” or two in the lower leaf axils. I have tried this on plants I wanted to increase my stock of, and it does work. On at least three occasions there were multiple pups produced sometimes between six and eight, but be warned; usually after production like this, the mother plant is “burnt out” and is then only good for tossing on the compost heap.

As for putting your damaged “Blanchie”pup into the water in the vase of a larger brom, this method works well if you want to strike cuttings of other plants also. Just remove any excess leaves and put the “cut end” of the cutting down into the water in the cup and more often than not they will put out roots. I think it must be something “special” in the water as I've even seen brom seeds germinate in it this water as well.

I love today's pic's; always great as usual but Neo 'King's Ransom' gets the prize from me; always a favourite of mine as is the little Neo Chiquita 'Linda' which is the result of a crossing of the tiny little Neo Lilliputiana with Neo 'Fireball'. I find your Vr. Altodaserrae quite attractive also, it's a species I've never seen down here and it has such a neat attractive form (probably the way it's been grown). I looked it up on the FCBS species register and it has an amazing very tall inflorescence and like everyone else, I am looking forward to seeing a pic when it flowers.

Wendy – As for crossing Hallelujah with your Quesnelia Liboniana, I think if you use a known “good parent” your chances of a successful outcome are increased, and Hallelujah is certainly a good parent. On the other hand, some beautiful brom's have resulted from crosses using the most unlikely parents, so I guess it's all down to experimenting and the expectations of hybridising. While talking about bi-generics, I too like the pic of your xNeomea 'Scorpio' what sort of flower does it have and do you have a pic you could post?

Tell Johnny I said that stepping in “cowsh” is supposed to be good luck so maybe he'll win the Lotto or something. Having said that though, it didn't help me win anything as when we were kids rounding up the cows from the yard to go into the bails for milking, we were more often than not bare footed and the mornings cold and frosty. While waiting in the yard to bring in the next lot of cows, the usual thing was to stand in fresh “cowsh” to keep our feet warm.

Shirley – I can't help you with the NOID in your first pic (yesterday's lot) but would like to add it to my wish list whenever you have a spare pup. I also like the little plant named Neo 'Chantilly' and would be interested in swapping a pup of this also when ever you get a spare.

I'm sure the pups you sent will arrive in good condition even at this busy time of the year for Australia Post. I find brom's are extra resilient and can tolerate a lot of mishaps and still bounce back. I once had a parcel of pups sent to me by a bloke who put the address on the package but forgot to write what town it was. They went around in the post for a little over two weeks before they finally found their way to me. They did look a bit de-hydrated, but after a soak in the “magic water” (½ cup of raw sugar dissolved in a bucket of water) they perked up within an hour and grew on to be great plants.

Your NOID in pic three is like one that's been around down here for a while and carries the unregistered name of Neo 'Brushstroke” (unreg.) possible due to the fine lines in the foliage resembling the path left by a paint brush.

With your pic's today, your NOID which is pictured No.3 is more than likely Neo. 'Fancy Pants'. It also is a bit variable and doesn't always have exactly the same markings.

Sue – Why I asked the question about your Ae. 'Red Bands' was that the plant I have, only ever has green coloured pups when they first poke their heads through the mix. Perhaps there is a little bit of faint barring but certainly not the rich red colour of the one you posted. I eagerly await the next pic's when it's more mature to see if it retains that rich colouring and if it does, and after you have registered it and made your fortune, can you put me on the end of a very long queue for a pup please?

Oh how I wished I had the space you have to plant all of my excess brom's, I could create a “brom heaven” just like you are doing. Your two new gardens look great and will fill another void in your landscape. I also love you 'Break of Day' and 'Camelot' plants. My 'Break of Day' has more of a golden colour than yours which I expect is due to having less light than you get up there, but it's still a nice plant all the same.

I've almost caught up and can now start on your post for today. You well and truly beat me today as I started here at about 5.00am and its now about 1.00 pm (so much for my one finger typing), but I can't do much else anyway so I'm still here trying to catch up.

You said in your message to Jen, “I was looking at your V. 'Angela' x 'Milky Way' and wonder why it doesn't look anything like I would expect, (pink)”, this is because it's following the “Pod Parent” dictates shape and size and “Pollen Parent” dictates colour rule. This is explained by the way the name formula is written and you're correct in saying that the first name is the “pod parent” and the second is the “pollen parent”. If on the other hand it was a reverse cross where Milky Way was the “Pod Parent” and Angela was the “Pollen Parent” the results could have been very different. But then you get some of the well known hybridisers who say the results would be the same no matter what way the parents were used. I can't say from the little experience I've had with brom's but I personally know from my orchid growing hybridising that this was definitely not the case and if you did the cross both ways, the progeny was always different. The only way to know for sure I suppose is to try doing the cross both ways; or ask Jack if he did it the other way also and what the results were.

I love the pic's you've posted and really like the way the leaf tips of the Mary Brett have coloured up when grown in bright light. I also like the curly leaves on your Bill. 'Catherine Wilson', they remind me of one I have called Bill 'Curly Top' except that one is green with white markings

Hi Jen – Good to see you posting again, I always like to hear what you have to tell us. What you say about the seed parent influencing shape and size and pollen parent influencing the colour, is usually correct. However it wasn't me who posted it., I think it was Ian and he was quoting the original statement which came from the “Master “ himself, Jacob (Jack) Koning and he certainly has sufficient runs on the board to make such statements as he's bred some magnificent hybrids. To support what I say, go to to see some of his achievements.

I love the little Dyckia seedling, it's one of many I gave away but the first I've seen with that colouring. A few years ago I saw a pic on one of the other forums of a Dyckia with a yellow centre and it was truly beautiful, but I can't remember where it was I saw it; maybe it was one of my Thai friend Chanin Thurot's babies. The seed that your particular plant came from was from a friend at the Wollongong Botanical Gardens, so let's hope you've got a good one.

Although I believe he's a bit of a character, I've never had the good fortune of meeting Allan Ladd or been to his nursery in person, but I have bought plants and seed from him and have always been satisfied with what I got. What interests me about his hybridising is that he's always trying new things; especially new bi-generic crosses and he especially likes to have a go at anything his peers say can't be done.

That's an amazing picture of Neo 'Blast' you've posted; a really beautiful eye catching plant. I have a few plants of it but have never found it to be in any way unstable but it looks like you got the good one and and like most unstable plants you can look forward to surprises every time a pup is born. When you get a spare pup of that clone could you add me to the waiting list for it please?

It also looks like you could be on a winner with your Neo Tiger' hybrid. What were the parents do you know? I have found that any of my plants that throw variegations like that on a pup always tend to thrown them from the same side of the mother plant each time. In fact I was once told that the quickest way to get a stock of these plants if you want to stabilise the markings was to destroy any pups that came from the other side of the mother. This was said to encourage pups from the same side as the one with the variegations and consequently increase you chances of getting something special.

It seems to me that you are on winners all around as your Vr. Bianca cultivar is showing some beautiful white markings as well and I'll bet “pounds to peanuts” that when it flowers it will have name tags hanging from every flower........”Long Live the Hybridiser”.

Just read your note to Trish about small ”a” for species. I'm afraid she may have got into the incorrect habit from me as I always write large letters even though it's wrong. I'm afraid its a hang-over from my tech. drawing days as an apprentice and it wasn't until I got into bromeliads that I learned that species should always be written in lower case lettering (including the first letter of the name). There are other rules about correct name writing also where some parts of the names should either be written in italics or underlined (I don't remember all of the rules now) but it just doesn't look right to me to write the genera name with an upper case first letter and then (if its a species) the following name in all lower case. On the other hand if it is a hybrid, the Genera name is still written with a capital first letter, but so are any of the other the names following, a bit confusing eh?.

That will do me for today, this one finger typing has taken me into the middle of the afternoon so a few pic's to finish. Pic's 1 and 2 are of an orchid (wash your mouth out Nev) Brassia Verucosa (23 perfumed spikes) always a welcome sight around Christmas time, Pic 3 is of my Neo. 'Break of Day' grown beneath 75% Beige shade cloth compared with the higher colour of Sue's plant posted on the 17th. which was grown under brighter northern sun. Pic's 4 and 5 show my now completed southerly wind breaks in the closed position and hopefully tomorrow I'll show them in the open position if I can drill the remainder of the steel plates without drilling my thumb again. (Incidently the house in the background is the neighbours, I don't have that much money.)

All the best, Nev.

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Townsville, Australia

Hi Everyone!

Still no rain here, most mornings this week have been overcast and it looks like it is going to rain but by the time I get to work the sky has cleared. Although I know that hosing the garden usually relaxes me just of late I am really starting to get annoyed having to hose every couple of days the areas of grass that the irrigation is just not reaching that is going brown where the grass is starting to die.

Hi Jen nice to hear from you and see all your beautiful pics, I especially liked your Pic 3 Neo ‘Blast Off’, how gorgeous is that white contrast with blushing pink centre. It is way too early for me to tell what my Neo ‘Blast Off’ will grow up like as it’s still only a pup but has grown considerably since purchased some months ago, I hope it grows up as gorgeous as yours. Pic 5 of Vr. ‘Bianca’ cultivar is really nice too; you are doing such a great job with your broms as they always look so big and healthy.

Jen thanks for your kind comments regarding the last brom pics I posted. Jen great I will have to go in and have a look on the FCBS and see what flower Vr. altodaserrae looks like so I know what to expect from my brom, yeah I agree it is very different to most Vriesea’s, it has really nice pointy leaves and the base of the plant is a nice smoky black that really stands out. Thanks Jen for correcting me on using large letter for species when it should be a small letter for species.

Hi Shirley so pleased to hear that you’re Gingers arrived OK apart from the repeated damage received to the packaging Grrrrr, were the leaves whiltered at all? Unfortunately I had to send them in a cardboard box because I could not find a foam container small enough at the time. I sent Nev’s in the same foam container that Nev had posted my brom in as I knew I had the Gingers to post so thought I could reuse the same box. Nev have you received your Gingers yet, hopefully your box travelled better? Also Nev where do you get your foam boxes from, the size is perfect for posting and it only cost about $6 something to post the foam box and it was much larger than the cardboard box I posted Shirley’s Gingers in, but in the end they both cost me the exact same to post, so the size of the foam box was perfect and in future I would prefer only using a foam box, as well as the sticky tape is easy to take off if you want to recycle again like I did. Oh before I forget I emailed through those Ginger Cultural Notes through to you last night, did you get them Shirley?

Shirley thanks for letting me know that Neo Chantilly is a small grower; I really like that one as it has a really nice shape about it. Also pleased to hear that you liked my pic of Vr. Angela x Milky Way, I have a real soft spot for this one and she really stands out amongst my other Vriesea’s. Yes I agree that Vr. altodaserrae is very unusual, I too have never seem one like this before and I am hoping to get pups off it at some stage, it has not flowered yet and is doing really well outside and appears to like the semi-shade spot where I have it.

Shirley I really liked all the recent pics you posted, not too sure what your Pic 3 NOID is though? But I really like its markings and spots. Pic 1 of Neo ‘Mandella’ is really nice too and I think those teeth give the brom great character and suit the thickness of the leaves.

Hi Sue yeah I know how annoying gum tree debris is because we get heaps falling over our fence from the Wetland area that is chocka-block full of paper bark trees. About three of the gum trees partially hang over our back yard so I am constantly picking up fallen branches, bark and gum leaves. We mow the leaves up but I have to naturally hand pick all the leaves out of my broms every couple of days, but without them I would have no shade for my broms so would be totally lost without them and would have to look at shading the whole back yard. I agree doesn’t gum tree mulch makes the best compost and I luv the smell of it. I wear a big green apron with a big pocket in the front when I collect all the gum leaves around my broms and put them into the front pocket as I collect them and when it’s full I go and empty it out into my compost bins, the leaves don’t take very long to break down when mixed with everything else, same with the paper bark off the gum trees, the lot gets composted.

Yeah Sue I agree you would think that the pic I posted of Vr Angela x Milky Way would turn out more pink but it is the other way around, but she does have some really nice pink tips that really stand out. I will have to see if I can find a grown up picture of the mother as we purchased her from EBay and possibly there may be a photo I can post? I remember when I got her in the mail and saw her for the first time I went Wow, so think if I had this reaction while the pup is still so young how pretty she is going to look as she matures and colors up and flowers, anyway time will tell.

Sue I really liked all the pics you posted recently, especially Pic 4 of Golden King, that orange coming through is beautiful, will she go completely orange all over when she flowers? And Pic 5 Billbergia ‘Catherine Wilson’, those curly leaves are really nice as well as that ever so cute little pup coming up. I am always amazed how quickly pups grow on some of my old mother broms, I normally check them weekly and am amazed from week to week how much they can grow.

Hi Nev so pleased to hear your thumb has not dropped off yet and so pleased to see you typed a beautiful long thread as I really enjoy reading all the stuff you have to say and all the valuable advice you give.

Thanks Nev I will try that great advice you mention about giving my retirement village plants a little more fertiliser as well as adding a “prill” or two in the lower leaf axils, what a great idea. I will definitely give it a try as the mother plants in the retirement village won’t last another year so if I can get the most pups out of them that would be wonderful as I really like them all and do not have anything in my garden that I don’t like, so the quicker I can duplicate or triplicate something the better as at the moment I really only have mum and pup with most of my broms and one of the golden rules in brom collecting is to never get rid of your first pup in case mother dies otherwise you have to start all over again trying to track another replacement brom down. Anyway I will let you know how I go.

Nev that is so very interesting what you say about putting pup in base of larger brom cup to get it to strike roots and that it’s something special in the water, I have never heard of this before but it sounds like a great idea and I will give it a try hopefully over my holidays as report back how I go. Gosh you are full of wonderful ideas Nev, keep them coming I learn something new from you nearly every single day, you are like a wonderful book of information and I quiet often yell out to Joe when I read your posts “Nev said try this” and then Joe and I get into a conversation on the subject and I sometimes write notes in my garden diary so I don’t forget to try some of these wonderful suggestions that come out of this great forum.

Yeah Nev I really like Neo ‘Kings Ransom’ also it really stands out amongst some of my other broms I have in the garden.

Does anyone happen to own a bromeliad called Neo ‘Reverence’ I have been chasing this bromeliad for some time as it is the very first brom I ever wrote in my Want List, it reminds me a lot of Neo ‘Kings Ransom’ but I think Neo ‘Reverence’ is much nicer. Anyway if anyone could spare a pup down the track I would be forever grateful.

Nev we absolutely adore the pics you posted of Orchid Brassia Verucosa – WOW how old is that Orchid? I showed Joe and he could not believe how beautiful all those flower spikes are and how many there are. Joe has this Orchid but it is only a couple of years old and it flowers every year but I was not aware that the flower smells. Nev your Neo ‘Break of Day’ pic you posted looks lovely and healthy and I really like its colors. Nev you did an awesome job with those Wind Breaks for your bromeliads, what a great idea, that look so neat and professional and really suit the garden, I wish our garden was wider instead of long so we could build something like that but I just do not think it would suit the way our back garden is situated. It must be nice not having too much grass to mow.

I finally went out and brought Milton Anti-Bacterial Tablets today to spray my Vriesea seedlings with as I noticed a couple of the trays have what looks like green algae starting to grow in them. I chickened out taking the lids off and letting a bit of light in to get rid of some of the algae because with the heat I don’t think the seedlings will be able to handle it as it’s real hot in the nursery at present 44 degrees. The seedlings are only about not even ½ cm in height yet so I am trying to be very careful what I do to them. Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated – help!

Anyway, better head off and go do the dishes.

Happy Gardening!


Sorry, OLD pics tonight as I have not taken any fresh one’s yet.

Pic 1 – Neo ‘Cane Fire’ (on the left) and Neo ‘Hot Gossip’ (on the right)
Pic 2 – Neo ‘Blushing Tiger’
Pic 3 – Neo NOID – any ideas?
Pic 4 – Vr. ‘Yellow on Black’
Pic 5 – Bill. ‘Rosea’

Thumbnail by bromishy Thumbnail by bromishy Thumbnail by bromishy Thumbnail by bromishy Thumbnail by bromishy
Brisbane, Australia

Hi everyone, another uncomfortably hot day here today.

Sue, we have the cicadas singing here too … isn’t it strange the way they all suddenly stop singing at once and then start again on cue together. I hope your plumber is correct and you get another 6 months out of your hot water system … mind you, that’s like June, it’s cold by then. I love your neo Golden King.

Nev, glad to hear your thumb hasn’t dropped off, hope it’s not giving you too much trouble. Your new wind breaks look good, your garden looks absolutely beautiful.

Trish, the ginger plant on the bottom of the box was much fresher looking than the one on the top. Could be that the top one got a bit more pressure or a bit more heat on it. Anyway, both are now potted up and hopefully they’ll take off. Once they get going, I’ll plant one in the garden and I might keep the other one in a pot and see how it fares. Does it get very large and do you have any growing in pots?

Trish, when it comes to postage, the cost is calculated on weight rather than size though sometimes they ‘cube’ it if it’s large and that makes it very expensive. I have received eBay purchases on a couple of occasions in a three sided box, not sure if that’s stronger or it’s so it can’t be ‘cubed’. I received the cultural notes last night Trish, thanks so much. Love your Vr yellow on black, what a beauty. I also like your neo Cane fire and its variegation. Mine used to look like that but has now gone so pink that it’s hard to see the variegation. I’ll post a pic of it when it was younger and one of how it looks now … perhaps I should move it to an area where it gets lower light.

Thursday tomorrow and I’m hoping to get some repotting done though I also have to wash and vacuum so I might not get to spend as much time with my broms as I would like. I hope it’s not as hot as the past few days have been.

It’s getting late so it’s bye for now,


Trish, I have just noticed that your neo Cane Fire is albo marginated … mine isn’t. Maybe mine isn’t cane fire afterall.

Thumbnail by works4me Thumbnail by works4me
Coffs Harbour, Australia

Good morning brom addicts!
where to begin today?
Nev, I hope my Aechmea 'Red Bands' is a sport and makes me a milion. I'm sure, when all the fuss dies down, and they become cheaper, I will send you a pup. LOL
Thank you for the nice comments about the new gardens, and the Neos I posted previously. Yes, your N. 'Break Of Day' has much more yellow in it, as did mine when they were younger. This is one plant that goes through a variety of colour changes as it grows. I prefer it in its juvenile stages.
I'm pretty sure Jack did the Angela and Milky way crosses in both directions. He seems to try everything in all directions when its flowering. How else could he come up with all those beautiful colour combinations? I usually have a isit with him aorund New Year, and catch up with another brom friend that visits him at that time. I must see what they are doing this year. It doesn't seem like that long ago when I was there last, and they were constructing a pond, so I'd love to see how the garden has come along.
I agree with Trish, and think your shutters look so professional, and neat and tidy! I'm sure they will do the trick and keep out the cold or salt laden winds, to some degree at least. You will have some quality plants to show at next years annual bromeliad show.
Your orchids are gorgeous. I bought a piece from Toukley markets a few years ago, and split it. I put half in a pot and tied the other half to a palm. The one in the palm flowered this year, and the one in the pot has been growing and flowering for a couple of years. I also inherited another two pots of it from leisaD, so have plenty to spread the smell of cloves (or something similar?) around the garden.
Trish, we had a patch of grass getting sizzled yesterday. I don't know how hot it was, but the pool is now 30 degrees, but still cool enough to freshen up in. Hubby watered the dry patch last night, but we've had overnight rain (thank goodness) and the forecast is for more. I'm hoping it rains for a couple of days, to keep me indoors so I can get the house tidy for visitors on Xmas day.
I remember seeing a lady at the markets selling Vriesea philippo-coburgii as V. altodasserae. She had the Andrew Steens book out and had the picture of V. altodasserae showing the flower spike. I am quite familiar with V. philippo-coburgii and knew it from its round, red tipped leaves, and the picture in the book of V. altodasserae had very distinct pointed tips. I guess it was the flower that had convinced her of its name, as I believe they are quite similar. This same seller once sold me an Orthophytum tricolour, as a variegated Tillandsia! Nice lady, just ill informed.
N. 'Golden King' in the photo, is about as good as it gets. I have seen other clones that have a more yellow foliage, and mine is quite pale.
I haven't heard of Neo. 'Reverence' but will look out for it on my travels. I looked it up in the brom photo index. It looks to be a darker red than N. 'Kings Ransom'. I love your V. 'Black On Yellow', where did you get that one?
Shirley, you are so right with the Cicadas singing then suddenly stopping. They were singing again this morning, and yesterday afternoon, while driving up the highway, we passed stands of trees just humming with cicadas. so LOUD!
I'm guilty of sending the three sided box of broms, and yes, purely to avoid cubage! We had a local postal natzi who insisted on cubing everything, so thwarted her! She is long since gone, but the habit remains. Also a triangle is supposed to be stronger than a box.
I have had the same trouble with some variegtes as your N. 'Cane Fire' with the variegation being swamped by the colour. So i have done as you suggested and moved them to lower light. Its all in the eye of the beholder, and working out what you want from your plant.
Well, I'd better go check my spelling then find some photos, post this and get my morning started. Hopefully the rain will cool things off, but I have a feeling it will get quite steamy around here!
photo one in mini Neo. 'Misfit' it has banding underneath the leaves
photo to is a bunch of N. punctate type minis. I can't tell them all apart!
photo three is a try of unlabelled Aechmeas. I'll have to wait for a flower on these.
photo four is a Neo embedded in a border of Minis (?) the Neo in the middle is a striated one, but losing the lines in high light. I purchased it from Ebay, labelled as 'Exotica Satin' but think not. I liked it anyway so bought it as it wasn't dear.
Photo five is a close up. It used to be a dark burgundy when it less light.

Thumbnail by weed_woman Thumbnail by weed_woman Thumbnail by weed_woman Thumbnail by weed_woman Thumbnail by weed_woman
north coast nsw, Australia

Shirley heres my Cane Fire pup. Yes the edge is white, whatever yours is though Shirley its awsome, i love it.

This message was edited Dec 19, 2012 4:37 PM

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Brisbane, Australia

Good morning all. Another scorcher here today and still no rain. Hate to see my water bill for this quarter. Sue I love your Neo Golden King and the curls on your Bill. Catherine Wilson. I haven’t got that one. The tigery one I posted with the stripy pup is Skotak’s Tiger x Hannibal Lector x carolinae. I was just being lazy. Guess the stripe comes from carolinae. I took a photo of my Ae. Red Bands pup. It’s got some bands but I think yours is redder so maybe it is a sport.
Ian, I like your Neo April. It looks quite similar to Bill Morris. Hope you have a safe trip and enjoy Christmas with your daughter.
Trish, you’ve got a very pretty Vr. Angela x Milky Way. Mine was a real dud, plain green with just the slightest hint of pink around the edge and the pups came out odd shapes. I’ve done the crosses both ways recently so it’ll be interesting to see the results if I (fingers-crossed) get some seeds. Love your Vr. Yellow on Black. Where did you get it? Do you know anything about its parents? If you can ever bear to part with a pup I’d love to go on the list to buy or swap.
Shirley, Neo Canefire seems to be very variable. Yours looks very nice in both photos. Bree, yours is very pretty too but also a bit different. Even in the BCR photo it shows both albo and variegated plants. I’ve got one that was labelled Canefire Purple when I bought it. Don’t think there’s any such thing but it’s definitely albo and very different from another Canefire that I got recently. It’s much lighter and more variegated. We could always ask Shane Zaghini from Brisbane to clear up our dilemma. He bred it.
Nev, hope your thumb is on the mend. I think I brought you down a Moby Dick earlier this year so maybe you have 2. The Dyckia you mentioned is Yellow Glow. Here’s some info about it on BCR. I’ve got one and your seedling is starting to look quite similar. I’ve put your name on the Neo Blast albino pup list but it mightn’t be anything special. Guess the possibility is in the genes. The Biancas are a bit like the Red Dragons, lots of variation because they’re seedlings. Wendy and I bought several tiny ones of each grex from Catlan’s for about $4 each and it’s been fun watching them grow. Can’t wait for my seedlings to start showing some individuality. Actually my seedlings Vr Dad’s Fav. X Red Erotica(?)s from Wendy's seeds are starting to get some red stripes underneath so they’ve got potential. Your orchids are lovely and you’ve done a great job with your windbreaks. Very neat.
Photos are 1. Baby Ae. Red Bands 2. Baby Ae. phanerophlebia looking very cute. 3. My favourite Neo marmorata albo with Canefire (purple) in front of it. 4. Some lovely pink babies on Vr. Pink Sensation from Sue 5. An unusual one called Wittrockia superba.
Night all, Jen

Thumbnail by brombirdie Thumbnail by brombirdie Thumbnail by brombirdie Thumbnail by brombirdie Thumbnail by brombirdie
Townsville, Australia

Hi Everyone!

Sorry I have left my run a bit late tonight and am about to head off to bed (nice pics everyone), I will catch up with you all over the weekend and respond to everone's threads then I promise.

Have a great day tommorrow!

Happy Gardening!


Brisbane, Australia

Hi all, as Jen said, another very hot day here in Brissie today. I did manage to repot a few of my larger vrieseas that were getting very cramped.

No post from Nev today, I hope his thumb hasn’t dropped off. Seriously Nev, I hope it is healing well and you will be back typing up a frenzy again soon.

Sue, I think I will move my neo Cane Fire to where it will get less light as you did with yours as I am still very attracted to the variegated broms. I do like your pic 5 ‘Exotica Satin’ or whatever, love that colour and the striations are clearly visible on the lower leaves.

Bree, I prefer the white margined Cane Fire but wouldn’t part with mine, and I love the colour of Jen’s too.

Jen, hope you are enjoying the school hols. You have some really lovely broms, I have a few that I have bought at Wendy’s sales. I adore Neo marmorata albo and it’s one I have been chasing for a while now. If you ever get a spare pup, I would love to buy or swap please and that lovely neo Cane Fire purple too.

Trish, just one more day and it’s the weekend. Do you have to work Monday, I would imagine a lot of people would be taking a day’s leave and having 5 days off. I feel sorry for the poor shop assistants who get only one day off and then there’s the hectic boxing day sales.

Just a couple of pics tonight, neo hazel mac and an unnamed small black neo.

Bye for now, Shirley

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