Saturday, July 28, 2012

Hoya blashernaezii IML 1631

I received this plant in September of 2011, so less than a year ago.  I find it an amazingly fast grower.  For example, I took a cutting in January to test it in S/H, and look at it already, 7 months later.

This is in S/H, I just have the plastic pot set inside a net pot for hanging.  Also, this is my first set of flowers.  Interestingly, the original plant this cutting was taken from is growing well, but hasn't bloomed yet, nor even started a penduncle.  So glad I decided to try this one in S/H.

I've only had this plant for a year, so I'm not sure what the best growing conditions are for it.  Last winter, I brought it inside to be kept warm, and most of the growth started  after it was put back outside in spring.  I think for now, I'm not going to change anything.

Hopefully it will continue to grow well, and I'll see more of these absolutely lovely flowers.

Edit 9/8/12 - so a month ago I complained the original plant hadn't bloomed.  It must have heard me, because it decided to start growing a few penduncles.  Growing in Turface/Perlite mix, kept moist.

Cold tolerant Vandaceous

Most people will tell you Vandas need constant warmth in order to grow well, and that is true of most Vandas and their close relatives.  But there are some that don't.  Here are three I grow that I leave outside year round, unless a frost/freeze is forecasted.

Neofinitia falcata

My average night temperature is 35 - 40F in mid winter, and those temps last about 6 weeks.  But during the day, the temps do rise to 50 - 60F.  I hang them where they are somewhat protected from rain, but also where they get a lot of direct sun.  While these get watered every day in the summer, with the rest of the Vandaceous, in the winter time, since it is cold outside, I water them maybe twice a week, during the warm part of the day.

Vanda cristata

I rarely fertilize during the colder months, maybe once every two weeks, as since they are outside in the cold, their growth is slowed. But as soon as the weather warms up in early spring, they are put back into the daily watering and minimum twice a week fertlizing process.

Vanda Bill Burke is a primary hybrid between V. denisoniana and V. cristata.  While V. denisoniana is a known warm grower, this hybrid has performed well for me after spending the last two winters outside.  Guess the V. cristata passed along it's cold tolerance.

Vanda Bill Burke

Hoya limoniaca

One of my favorite Hoyas, a very fast grower, and it was quick to bloom.  I grow this one two ways.  The original plant is in coir right now, but when it is due to be repotted, it will be moved to a Turface/Perlite mixture.  The other way is in S/H.  The semi-hydro plant is also allowed to hang naturally instead of being wound around a trellis.  Both bloom often in the summer.

These plants both receive a lot of sun, warm conditions, and the one to the left is kept evenly moist while actively growing, and allowed to dry slightly in winter.

By a lot of sun, it is receiving direct sun from a little after sunrise, until about 2pm during the summer.  Unfortunately in winter, I cannot give it that level of light, which is why I reduce watering somewhat.

Monday, July 16, 2012

Hoya camphorifolia

Hoya camphorifolia is a gem of a plant.  Easy to root from cuttings, very quick to grow and flower.  It is one of the first Hoyas I ever managed to get to flowering.  I grow this one warm, bringing it inside in fall once the nights drop down consistently into the 50s.  It is also one of the few Hoyas that I actually give true shade to.  Watering is to keep is gently, consistently moist.

If you are familiar with growing orchids, basically this one likes cultural conditions very similar to a Phal.

I bought this as a rooted cutting from SRQ, and it had bloomed for the first time about a year later. Since then, it blooms all summer long for me. The flowers are on the small side, but very cute. I have heard reports that the fragrance is less than desirable, akin to dirty socks, but I have never detected any scent from the flowers.  It is simply a great Hoya, especially for newbies who want something a little different from the carnosa complex.

Edit - 8/11/12

Here is an updated picture of the whole plant, showing about 10 penduncles blooming or close to blooming at the same time.

Saturday, July 7, 2012


I've made a string of Hoya posts, so it is time for some orchids.  Today I'll cover the Brassavolas I have.  I only have four of this genus, acaulis, nodosa, culcullata and subulifolia.  Out of all of them the acaulis is the one I'm having some trouble with.  I mounted it shortly after I received it, and it sat there sulking for a year.  Just a week ago I noticed a new growth and new root branches, so maybe it has decided to live.

Brassavolas belong to the Cattleya alliance, and I grow mine warm, very strong light and allowing to dry out in between waterings.  Two are mounted, and two are potted right now.  By very strong light, I mean direct sun for about 4 hours during the summer.  This picture is B. nodosa, also known as the "Lady of the Night" orchid due to it's very strong perfumy fragrance that is only at night.  A common orchid, and included in the average orchid grower's collection.

The Brassavola to the left is B. subulifolia, also known as B. cordata. I have trouble blooming this plant, I don't find it as easy to grow and bloom as B. nodosa. This plant requires almost direct sun all day to grow well and bloom. It is in a net pot, with Hydroton as the media. I don't think I'll ever get it out of there. But it seems happy enough right now.

And the picture below belongs to B. culcullata, a recent aquisition for me.  Again a lovely night time fragrance, which imo is more delicate tha nodosa's fragrance.  More like jasmine.  It is currently potted, but once done blooming, I will mount it.  Hopefully it doesn't sulk for a year like the acaulis did.

Monday, July 2, 2012

Hoya polyneura

Hoya polyneura is considered by many to be a cool growing Hoya.  I've not had trouble with it here in Florida though.  It seems to not mind our hot and humid summers as long as it is watered often.

I do leave it outside year round down to freezing temperatures. Watered a little less often in the cooler temperatures of winter, and given bright sunlight during the coolness of winter, shaded light during the heat of summer. It seems to require more fertilizer than the typical Hoya.

This Hoya is relatively easy to grow, as long as you pay attention to the plant.  When it needs watered a little more often, the stems droop.  When it needs fertilized more, the leaves yellow.

This is one of the Hoyas that I am experimenting with growing in S/H.  The cuttings rooted very well in S/H, and continue to grow quickly.

I've only flowered this once, last fall.  Hopefully as it continues to grow, it will continue to flower well in the fall.