Category: ‘Plants’

Miami as seen by Damien Crosse

November 16, 2013 Posted by suefairview

Recently Damien Crosse traveled to Miami with Dato Foland. Here are some of the photos he took:

At Fairchild Tropical Botanic Garden:

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Calathea burle-marxii ‘White Ice’
http://www.towenmounttropicals.com.au/Gallery/ginger/calatheas.html

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Tacca integrifolia
http://www.rareflora.com/taccachanwhite.htm

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Thoas swallowtail, Papilio (Heraclides) thoas autocles
http://johnbokma.com/mexit/2007/06/27/thoas-swallowtail-papilio-thoas-dorsal-1.html
This one has lost the tails

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Common Morpho Butterfly (Morpho peleides)
http://www.psmicrographs.co.uk/common-morpho-butterfly–morpho-peleides-/science-image/morpho22

[All species identified by my brother - thanks!]

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A Chihuly sculpture surrounded by orchids is the center piece of this garden.

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What’s in a name? that which we call a rose
By any other name would smell as sweet…

Three photos of Damien with Dato and Miami in the background.

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Damien and Dato at the beach.

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Dato was ready for his close-up.

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The Tower Hill Orchid Show!!!

November 12, 2013 Posted by suefairview

Way back on November 3rd, my brother and I went to the Tower Hill Orchid Show. We had a wonderful time; it is always great to see him and since his camera was way better than mine, I let him take the photos of the plants we admired. Here are the photos:

This Dendrobium cuthbertsonii was actually a very tiny plant with intense orange color. It stood out like a jewel at the show.

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These Cirrhopetalium (Bulbophyllum) rothschildianum ‘A-doribil’ have a small ball-like organ that moves indepently of the rest of the flower and attract pollinators. We saw these last time and we were both still fascinated by this plant.

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Sophronitis wittigiana is another orchid that has a very pretty color.

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Vanda ‘Robert’s Delight’ was only photographed because my nephew, my brother’s son’s name is Robert. LOL!

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Lepanthopsis astrophora has to be the smallest orchid at this show. I put my finger into the shot to give you some perspective of this size of this plant. Incredible!

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Phalenopsis ‘Dtps Yu Pin Lady’ wowed us with her pretty inkspot-like pattern.

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Schomburgkia ‘Wellesley’ has a profusion of upside-down flowers.

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The Habenaria medusa is aptly named. We had never seen anything like it!

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Phaphiopedilum ‘Angela’ seems to be drawn by a pointilist.

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Masdevalia ‘Copper Angel’ is from a Peruvian rain forest and needs to be misted up to 8 times a day.

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Pleurothallis nipterophylla is unusual because the flowers grow from the center of the leaf.

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Masdevalia exquisita is another cutie from the Peruvian rain forest.

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Everyone was photographing this superb arangement of Paphiopedilum superbiens. Stunning, aren’t they?

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Isn’t the green on this Vanda sanderina ‘alba’ refreshing?

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Diagnosed with early signs of Orchid Madness

November 6, 2013 Posted by suefairview

Here is a blog post about the Tower Hill Orchid Show that I attended with my brother this past weekend:

Orchids at an orchid show

This weekend Joe and I attended the Massachusetts Orchid Society’s annual orchid show, held at Tower Hill Botanic Garden in Boylston, MA. Sponsored by the Massachusetts Orchid Society, it’s a popular show ( as orchid shows tend to be), and it is show that we have attended many times, even thought it falls just as we are trying to pack our own greenhouse for the winter ( or fixing glass which broke during a windstorm this week!), or when we are busiest with fall garden clean up like raking leaves. That said, there is ALWAYS time to go look at orchids, and to buy new ones. I mean, mini-complex Paph’s – Where have you been all of my life?

Even though it may seem that orchids are everywhere now, the real serious orchid grower remains a rare commodity, yet I warn you novices with your ice-cube orchids – before long, you will yern for something more, and you will move onto a dyed blue orchid – and then you might try just one cattleya, and before long, you are in rehab. Don’t ‘Do’ Orchids.  They are addictive and hard to get off of. Don’t say that I didn’t warn you.

It has been said that the ‘orchid collector’ may be the most obsessed ( i.e. crazy, as in “they will kill someone for a rare orchid – read any book on orchid collecting and see!) of all enthusiasts, perhaps only to be outdone by dog-show people ( or is it the other way around?) Either way, we are doomed. I’ve been trying to stay away from anything orchid related for some time now, I ignore invitations to join local chapters of the AOS ( the American Orchid Society), if I accidentally click on a link to the AOS website, or to one of the hundreds of orchid grower sites that I have bookmarked for that day when I win Megabucks ( like Santa Barbara Orchid Estate), then I just as quickly hit the back space arrow. No orchids, not for me. Not yet. Must focus, must focus, must focus and resist.

Orchid Show Display
Many autumnal orchids are featured in group displays, such as this one, where growers assemble plants from their
collections which are in peak perfection, often featuring more of their most unusual species such as this
Pleurathalis species which displays it’s tiny blossoms within its leaf. Not all orchids are showy, many are odd, and may seem very-un-orchid like at all, yet most orchids are not what you think.
I admit that I grow many, MANY plants, but orchids? As some of you know. I do grow a few orchids, mostly hardier forms dendrobiums, some of the cool growing Asian Cymbidiums and the Japanese forms of Neofinetia – those tiny, fragrant summer blooming orchids. I do show great restraint with orchids, often getting board with fancier forms, and I show signs of being tempted with all but the rarest forms of many species, yet luckily, I cannot legally obtain them nor afford them (yet).
And so it goes with orchids. The height of plant geekdom. Luckily, I cannot afford the warm, humid, water-filtered, air-misted closud forest stove which many of the finest species demand, so I am left with the odd balls. Those species that can handle the cooler, and more seasonal shifting temperatures of my greenhouse, – oh yeah, and those that can handle some negligence. I am not about to buyt a $700 water filter which most collectors have. ( true). That said, I am still a plant collector….and therefore, I lust.
Orchid Show
I might try Vanda orchids again, after seeing this incredible green one. Vanda sanderiana ‘alba’
with its chartreuse and white blossoms caused traffic jams in the hallway. 

 

Pahiopedilum superbum
Gotta love all Papheopedilium super bum selections, for foliage and stature. They take me back to my first job in the 1970′s
when I worked at the Stoddard Estate in MA, I used to drool over these plants in their greenhouse. Time, me thinks,
to add some more to mine.
Monnierara Millennium Magic 'Witch Craft' AM/AOS
I never got the name of this amazing black orchid ( it’s Monnierara Millenium Magic ‘Witch Craft’ AM/AOS – thanks to Marc Hachadourian) , but it was on display grown by neighbors A&P Orchids in Swansea, MA, and they were kind enough to take it into the conservatory so that I could try and get a better shot of it for you.
Some growers specialized in tiny gems, which appeal to many serious collectors as they can grow them in small spaces, Wardian cases and even some large terrariums. Check out this little Dendrobium species no larger than a fifty cent piece. It’s in a one inch diameter pot, for $75.
We all are familiar with Phaleonopsis ( yawn), but how about this species? Meet Phalaenopsis heiroglyphica.

 

Read the rest of the post here.

The Tropical Garden this past Summer

October 17, 2013 Posted by suefairview

I was able to get the Ecuador Pink brugmansia outdoors very early this season, and actually it is still there! So, here are some photos of it when it had the most flowers of the season:

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My passiflora also did very well this season. Here are upclose photos of my blue-eyed Susan and Lady Margaret:

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This year I noticed spiders on my plants! Here is the Phidippus, one of the jumping spiders.  They jump on prey instead of catching it in webs.  They have excellent binocular vision, the way most visual predators do.

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Next up is a crab spider.

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He has terrific camoflage on that flower, doesn’t he?

 

Meadow rimed with frost

November 21, 2012 Posted by suefairview

The other day as I walked the dogs, I noticed that the meadow was anew as it was rimed with frost.

Such delicate beauty; frozen until touched by the morning sun.