Copyright 1985 by the Bromeliad Society, Inc.
|Vol. 35, No. 2||March—April 1985|
Editors: Thomas U. Lineham, Jr., Edward C. Hall.
Editorial Advisory Board: David Benzing, Racine Foster, Sue Gardner, Victoria Padilla, Ellen Jay Peyton, Robert W. Read, John F. Utley.
|51||Observations on the Blooming Periodicity of Bromeliads Jerry Raack|
|52||A New Species of Connellia from Venezuela Lyman B. Smith|
|54||Bromelia horstii, a New Species from Brazil Werner Rauh|
|61||Two New Terrestrial Bromeliads from Bahia, Brazil Wilhelm Weber|
|65||Bromeliad Internship at Selby Gardens is Announced Harry E. Luther|
|66||Notes from Herbarium Bradeanum, No. 1: Aechmea warasii var. intermedia Edmundo Pereira and Elton M. C. Leme|
|67||The Florida Bromeliads: Tillandsia balbisiana Bradley C. Bennett|
|70||Streptocalyx biflorus Werner Rauh|
|72||Henry Nehrling, 1853-1929, American Bromeliad Pioneer E. L. Lord|
|77||Guzmania melinonis and G. remyi Compared Harry E. Luther|
|79||Bromeliad Flower Arrangement, No. 3: Using Billbergia pyramidalis May A. Moir|
|86||Bromeliad Society Directors' Address List|
The Journal, ISSN 0090-8738, is published bimonthly at Orlando, Florida by the Bromeliad Society, Inc. Articles and photo-graphs are earnestly solicited. Closing date is 60 days before month of issue. Advertising rates are listed in the advertising section. Permission is granted to reprint articles in the Journal, in whole or in part, when credit is given to the author and to the Bromeliad Society, Inc.
Please address all membership and subscription correspondence to Membership Secretary Linda Harbert, 2488 E. 49th, Tulsa, OK 74105.
Subscription price (in U.S. $) is included in the 12-month membership dues: single - $15.00, dual (two members at one address receiving one Journal) - $20.00, contributing - $20.00, fellowship - $25.00, life - $750.00. Please add $5.00 for international mail, except for life members. For first class mail for any class of membership, please add $5.00. Individual copies are $3.25 for U.S., $4.00 for all other addresses, postpaid. Funds over $15.00 from contributing and fellowship members help to pay the cost of Journal color illustrations.
Please see inside back cover for a directory of all officers and services.
Printed by: Robinson Inc., Orlando, Florida
t a meeting of our Southern Ohio Bromeliad Society last year, one of the members commented that her Aechmea coelestis was just coming into bloom and that the event was very predictable. Her comment led me to think that it might be interesting to summarize my 12 years of records to find length of time to bloom, what time of year a bromeliad blooms, and how long the flowering period lasts, to look for correlations with the observations published by others, and to present the results for the benefit of bromeliad growers. I knew without looking for source material that I had often wished in vain for such information in plant descriptions, but had no real appreciation for how little has been published.
My own books gave me only four sources: André (1889, 1983), Benzing (1980), Kubisch (1965), and Padilla (1973). Others mentioned the subject in general terms only.
André describes which plants he found in bloom or in fruit, and the time of year. Few of his plants, unfortunately, are commonly cultivated in the United States and even fewer exist in my collection. Still, his is the most direct information of any of the sources on the time of year when various species bloom.
My second source was Fritz Kubisch's list of the blooming seasons of 27 Mexican tillandsia species. Since there is no text, but only the names of the plants and their blooming periods, we are left guessing for an explanation of these periods which range from two to seven months in length.
Victoria Padilla (page 12) has an appropriate general statement:
The growing of bromeliads requires a certain amount of patience, especially when it comes to blooming. It is the author's experience that all mature plants will flower eventually, taking anywhere from a year on up to a dozen and more. Under optimum growing conditions, aechmeas, billbergias, neoregelias and vrieseas will flower in three years from seed. Most of them will put out a flowering spike two years after they have been severed from the mother plant as an offshoot.Benzing (pages 139-140) discusses research on photoperiodism and states, "information gained through these efforts has application to many families, including Bromeliaceae." He adds, "so many bromeliads flower at predictable times each year even in culture that photoperiodism must be common in the family. Except for Billbergia nutans and Ananas comosus, none of the ornamental species have been examined to discover the details of their flowering responses." Why is this? Dr. Benzing proposes that "given the ease and economy with which bromeliads can be brought to flower by chemical agents, little economic incentive exists for this kind of research."
Benzing's explanation of the lack of research is probably valid, but it seemed to me that it is neither easy nor economical for the hobbyist to obtain some of the flowering agents. Besides, they lose their potency quickly, and must be used with great care to avoid ruining a fine specimen.
After this unfavorable beginning I remained convinced that the information that I had, and for which I had been searching, could be useful and that it might encourage others to include such information in their descriptions of bromeliads. We all know that the many factors affecting plant growth are influenced by the individual grower, but a developing and published body of data on years to maturity, when plants bloom, and how long the bloom lasts would be very helpful.
Before presenting my observations, I should describe my growing environment. I began growing bromeliads at my home in central Ohio in 1972. My plants grow outside on a patio under the high shade of oak, maple, and beech trees during the warm months of mid-May until late September. During the cold months I grew them indoors under fluorescent lights until I obtained a greenhouse in 1975. A gas heater with kerosene backup keeps the greenhouse at an almost constant 60° F during the winter, while shade from the trees and an exhaust fan keep it from getting too hot in the summer. A cistern provides rainwater the year around for watering. I have experimented very little with chemicals to force blooming and have not used any such records in this report.
I now have approximately 500 species and hybrids of the various bromeliad genera. Since they are a hobby and my time is limited by such activities as work, the record keeping is usually done each week or two, and while the observations may lack some scientific detail, their quantity tends to remove small discrepancies.
Periodicity as it relates to blooming may be thought of in two ways. One is the number of years needed for a species to reach maturity and bloom. The other is the regularity with which a species blooms. An offshoot of this inquiry is the duration of bloom—that is, how long does good color persist.
The accompanying table summarizes what I have learned after repeated observations about regularity of maturation time. Factors including size of the offset when removed from the parent, and less than optimum light and temperature may lengthen that time, but nothing that I have identified except forcing agents will speed up the process.
In general, variegated bromeliads take longer to mature than their green counterparts. Aechmea fulgens var. discolor will bloom in one year while Ae. fulgens var. discolor 'Variegata' requires three years. Similarly, Neoregelia carolinae is a one-year plant while N. carolinae f. tricolor is a two-year plant. The difference may be that the chlorophyll deficiency causes variegates to take longer to mature. This condition may also be observed even between two variegated plants of the same species if they have widely differing amounts of variegation.
Other deviations are so hard to analyze that I am left with many unanswered questions such as:
Why does a Canistrum fosterianum which appears to reach maturity in two years wait another two years before blooming?
Why have some of my plants never bloomed? For example, one specimen of Vriesea rodigasiana has bloomed on reaching maturity, but another from a different source has not bloomed in eight years. When none of my dyckias or hechtias bloom the fault must be with my environment, but I am puzzled when two plants of the same species behave differently.
Why do some specimens of a species reach blooming stage within predictable intervals while others arrive at random intervals? I have observed randomness with Aechmea 'Red Ribbon', Ae. tillandsioides 'Variegata', Billbergia euphemiae var. rubra, Guzmania 'Insignis', G. vittata, and many vrieseas including both hybrids and species.
In this and in my reports to follow on month and duration of bloom I must emphasize that the information is limited. While the plant population provides a degree of validity, it is nevertheless restricted to my locality. My hope is that other growers will contribute their observations. It would be especially interesting to receive data from Australian, South African, South American, and other antipodean members. I would be happy to analyze such information and to report on it later. With such cooperation it might also be possible to experiment with requirements of light, temperature, and other growing conditions under widely varying conditions in order to expand our common knowledge.
André, Edouard Francois. Bromeliaceae Andreanae. Translated and annotated by Michael Rothenberg. Pacifica, CA: Big Bridge Press; Berkeley, CA: Two-windows Press; 1983.
Benzing, David H. The Biology of the bromeliads. Eureka, CA: Mad River Press; 1980.
Kubisch, Fritz. The Blooming seasons of some Mexican tillandsias. J. Bromel. Soc. 16:13; 1965.
Padilla, Victoria. Bromeliads; a descriptive listing of the various genera and the species most often found in cultivation. New York: Crown Publishers, Inc.; 1973.
Lyman B. Smith
Connellia varadarajanii L. B. Smith & Steyermark, sp. nov.
|Photo by Luteyn.|
|Fig. 1: Connellia varadarajanii, a new species, showing its decurved inflorescence with unusually long, smooth sepals tapering to a long, narrow point.|
Planta dense aggregata, plus minusve caulescens, florigera 0.9-1.35 metralis; foliis multis 40-45 cm longis, laminis anguste triangularibus acuminatis basin versus 3.5-4 cm latis ubique conferteque armatis, vaginis amplis; scapo decurvato 80 cm longo ca 2 cm diametro, scapi bracteis subfoliaceis erectis dense imbricatis subtriangulari-ovatis longiacuminatis in dimidio superiore armatis; inflorescentia bipinnatim paniculata subthyrsoidea anguste cylindrica 0.5-0.85 m longis 7-10 cm diametro rhachidi, ramisque dense brunneo-villosis; bracteis primariis subovatis breviter acuminatis 4-6 cm longis 2.5-3 cm latis extus breviter villosis; pedicellis villosis, florigeris 5-10 mm longis fructigeris 10-15 mm longis; bracteis florigeris anguste lanceolatis acuminatis 29 30 mm longis 6 mm latis extus puberulis: sepalis lanceolatis acuminatis 21 mm longis 6 mm latis, extus puberulis; petalis roseis unquiculatis 22 mm longis, laminis obovatis apice rotundatis 12 mm longis 10 mm latis; staminibus styloque inclusis; semillas extremitate una tantum breviter appendiculatis.
|Photo by U.S. National Herbarium.|
|Fig. 2: Herbarium specimen Connellia varadarajanii|
Type: Venezuela: Edo. Bolivar: Auyan-tepui, south-facing sandstone bluffs, 0.5 km from "Descanso" towards El Peñon and approx. 3 km from access track, 1950-2000 m, 12 Jan 1984, G. S. Varadarajan 1205 (holotype, US; isotype, VEN).
This species differs from the other known taxa of Connellia in having the inflorescence branches, rhachis, pedicels, exterior of the sepals and floral bracts densely villous or villosulous, and in having the seeds only shortly appendiculate at one extremity. In its nodding, decurved inflorescence, it resembles C. nutans L. B. Smith, but differs from that taxon in the dense pubescence referred to, in the longer, ecarinate, acuminate sepals, in the leaves spinulose-serrate throughout their length, and in the scape bracts spinulose-serrate in the upper half.
The species in named for G. S. Varadarajan, who collected the plant during a study of the subfamily Pitcairnioideae.
Smithsonian Institution, Washington, D. C.
eopoldo Horst, the cactus collector, has discovered a very decorative new bromelia near Jaciara, Brazil, in a deciduous forest. This new species, Bromelia horstii, is suitable for small collections because it has a beautiful inflorescence and does not become very big. Following is a short description:
Bromelia horstii Rauh nov. spec.
Planta acaulis, florens usque ad 15 cm alta, basis tuberiformis 5 cm crassa vaginis desiccatis circumdata. Folia plus minusve 10 cm rosulam planam usque ad 10 cm altam, 60 cm diametientem formantia. Vaginae erectae axem amplectentes, usque ad 3.5 cm altae, 3 cm latae, pallide alutaceae vel albae margine dentatae. Laminae rectangulariter patentes vel recurvatae, planae vel modice canaliculatae, usque ad 30 cm longae, 4 cm latae, basi non angustatae, in apicem longum recurvatum excurrentes, rufescentibrunneae vel olivaceae, dense albo-lepidotae, itaque cano colore, margine solide dentatae. Dentes duri et pungentes, apicem versus spectantes, brunnescentes, 2 mm longi, plus minusve 1 cm inter se distantes. Scapus inflorescentiae brevis, 4-6 cm longus, erectus, rosulam superans, 1 cm diametiens, albo-lanatus. Bracteae scapi imbricatae, basales subfoliatae, superiores minores pro more involucri dispositae lamina brevi, triangulari-acuminata supra fere glabra dentata et vagina longa erecta margine dentata pallide carminea dense albo-lanata. Inflorescentia bipinnata, sub anthesin 4-5 cm longa, 2.5 cm crassa spicis 7-8 erectis. Bracteae primariae bracteis scapi superioribus similes, sed tantum lamina brevissima et vagina longa pallide carminea albo-lanata. Spicae pedicello plus minusve 5 nun longa, 1 cm alto, usque ad 4.5 cm longae, 1 cm latae, complanatae, plerumque triflorae, flos centralis saepe deminutus. Bracteae florales carinatae oblongo-lanceolatae, acuminatae, 2.5 cm longae multo breviores quam sepala, pallide carmineae marginibus inermes. Ovarium et tubus epigynus 2 cm longus, 5 mm crassus, triangulus pallide brunneo-lanatus. Sepala libera, 2 cm longa, oblongo-lanceolata, acuminata, carinata, albo-lanata glabrescentia, marginibus inermia. Petala erecta, solida, ligulata, obtusa, 2.8 cm longa, 0.5 cm lata, se obtegentia, lucenti-purpurea margine albo, basim versus alba. Antherae cum stylo profunde inclusae. Filamenta et thecae alba; stylus albus filamentis brevior.
Holotypus: B.G.H. 59 861, leg. L. Horst (16.6.1984), in herb. inst. bot. system. univers. heidelb. (HEID) conservatur.
Habitat et distributio: Jaciara (Mato Grosso, Brasilia).
Plant with short stolons; single rosette with a very short, bulbous stem, flowering up to 15 cm long. Leaves few (5-10), densely rosulate. Sheaths distinct, erect, covering the bulb, up to 3.5 cm long and 3 cm wide, pale-leather brown, dentate at the margin. Blades narrow triangular, spreading to recurved, flat or slightly canaliculate, up to 30 cm long and 4 cm wide, olive green to reddish-brown, covered with a whitish or silvery coat of scales, not narrowed towards base, laxly serrulate; spines hard and pungent, brownish, 2 mm long and 1 cm distant one from the other. Scape erect, short, 4-6 cm long, longer than the rosette, 1 cm thick, white floccose. Scape bracts densely imbricate, the basal ones subfoliate, the upper ones shorter and forming a kind of involucrum beneath the inflorescence, pale carmine-red; sheath rose, white-woolly. Inflorescence densely bipinnate, cylindric, 4-5 cm long and 2.5 cm in diameter, with 7-8 erect spikes. Primary bracts like the upper scape bracts, but with a very short blade and a long, pale carmine-red, white-woolly sheath. Spikes erect, short and broad pedicellated, 4.5 cm long, 1 cm wide, complanate, mostly with 3 flowers; the middle one often reduced. Floral bracts carinate, lanceolate, acute, 2.5 cm long, pale carmine-red. Ovary together with the epigynous tube 2 cm long, 4 mm wide, 3-angled, pale-brown-woolly. Sepals free, 2 cm long, lanceolate, acute, carinate, sometimes cucculate, even at the margin, white-woolly up to glabrous. Petals erect, coriaceous to carnose, ligulate, obtuse, 2.8 cm long., 0.5 cm wide, bright-purple, with white margins, white to the base. Stamens and style deeply included; filaments flat, their bases united to a 5 mm high tube; anthers white; style white, shorter than the filaments. Fruits not known.
Holotype: Leopoldo Horst No. 7 = B.G.H. 59 861 (16.6.1984), in the Herb. of the Inst. System. Bot. Univ. of Heidelberg (HEID).
Distribution: Terrestrial on dry rocks in deciduous forests near Jaciara (Mato Grosso, Brazil).
B. horstii seems to be closely related to B. interior L. B. Smith, but this is much bigger (up to 60 cm high); the stem is not bulbous at the base; the inflorescence scape is elongated; the spikes are more than 3-flowered; in B. horstii the sepals are acute and only rarely cucculate at the apices and the fleshy petals are bright purple with white margins and white to the base.
|Fig. 3: Bromelia horstii Rauh. The short, bulbous stem, leaves forming a dense rosette, and bright purple petals with white margins, characterize this plant.|
|Photos by the author.|
|Fig. 4: Bromelia horstii. Young inflorescence from above.|
Heidelberg, West Germany
uring his most recent expeditions in the State of Bahia, Brazil, the well known horticulturist and collector of bromeliads and orchids, Alvim Seidel, of Corupa, collected some rare and noteworthy bromeliads, among them Cryptanthus seidelianus and Orthophytum alvimii. Both are of pronounced xeric habit and could be cultivated with cactus or other succulents native to a temperate climate. The Latin descriptions will appear in Feddes Repertorium, volume 97, heft 1/2, January 1986.
Cryptanthus seidelianus W. Weber sp. nov.
Plant acaulis, about 30 cm in diameter. Leaves few, to 20 cm long, fleshy, green, densely white lepidote beneath. Sheaths indistinct merging in the blades, broadly ovate, 15 mm long, 20 mm wide, sulcate nerved, margins deeply serrulate. Blades narrowly triangular, pungent acuminate, not constricted over the sheaths, canaliculated, margins slightly undulate and densely serrate with greenish-brown spines 2 mm in length. Inflorescence deeply included in the center of the rosette. Scape very short and hidden by the leaves. Scape bracts like the leaves but much shorter. Primary bracts triangular, 30-50 mm long, margins serrate. Lateral spikes densely fasciculate, 2-4 flowered. Flowers sessil, to 37 mm long. Flower bracts ovate-triangular, acute, 10-13 mm long, 7 mm wide, carinate, the apices sparsely lepidote. Ovary to 10 mm long, 6 mm in diameter, somewhat trigonous, ovules apical loculated, epigynous tube distinct. Sepals lanceolate, acute, to 13 mm long, 4 mm wide, 9 mm high, connate, carinate, apices sparsely lepidote. Petals lanceolate, acuminate, white to 25 mm long. Stamens 17 mm long, anthers sagittiforme, 2 mm long, subdorsifixed. Style 21 mm long, stigmata dilated, 4 mm long, somewhat curved and divergent.
Type. A. Seidel 963 (holotype WEB 634), Milagres, Bahia, Brazil, 550 msm, July 1983.
This new species is related to Cryptanthus schwackeanus Mez 1891, but the sepals are much larger and highly connate.
|Drawing by Author.|
Fig. 5: Cryptanthus
seidelianus W. Weber spec. nov.|
A. Habit B. Lateral spike C. Flower bract D. Sepals E. Petal with stamen F. Longitudinal section of ovary with style
Orthophytum alvimii W. Weber sp. nov.
Plant with elongated, erect stem, flowered about 80 cm high. Leaves few, sub-erect, the inner ones equal in length with the inflorescence, the outer much reduced. Sheaths inconspicuous, to 50 mm long and 45 mm wide, concealing the stem, nerved, purplish tinged, subdense white tomentose, their margins serrate. Blades acuminate, to 60 cm long, up to 35 mm wider than the sheaths, green, subdensely white lepidote beneath, subglabrous above, only faintly canaliculated, margins deflexed and densely armed with antrorse spines of 2.5 mm length. Scape erect, to 60 cm long, transition from the stem indistinct, terete, at base 15 mm tapering to 5 mm diameter at the inflorescence, partially dissite white tomentose. Scape bracts like the leaves concealing the scape with their sheaths, their blades to 63 cm in length. Inflorescence laxly composed, 18 cm long, greenish-yellow. Primary bracts broadly ovate with long, triangular, strongly deflexed blades, the lower much longer, the higher nearly twice as long as the lateral spikes, like the leaves dissite white tomentose beneath, glabrous above, margins densely serrate. Lateral spikes sessil, densely polystichous, strobiliforme, to 30 mm long, 25 mm in diameter. Flower bracts ovate, pungent acuminate, alate-carinate, their apices recurved to deflexed, nerved, margins densely serrulate, to 18 mm long, 11 mm wide. Flowers sessil, to 25 mm long. Ovary compressed, on both sides alate, 5 mm high, epigynous tube about 1 mm. Sepals free, narrowly lanceolate, acuminate, to 15 mm long, 3 mm wide, the anterior ones indistinctly carinate, posterior strongly alate-carinate. Petals white, linear-lanceolate, acuminate, 20 mm long, 3 mm wide, on the inner surface with two scales 5 mm long, 4 mm high adnate to the petals, their free apices crispate-fimbriated. Stamens 13 mm long, anthers 2 mm long, dorsifixed. Style 15 mm long, stigmata very small and papillous.
Type. A. Seidel 967 (holotype WEB 651), Itambe, Bahia, Brazil, about 200 msm, July 1983.
Orthophytum alvimii is closely related to O. disjunctum L. B. Smith 1955, but the plants are much larger and the sepals and the flower bracts are alate-carinate.
|Drawing by Author.|
Fig. 6: Orthophytum
alvimii W. Weber spec. nov.|
A. Habit B. Part of the inflorescence C. Flower with flower bract D. Flower bract E. Sepals F. Petal with stamen G. Ovary with style
Waldsteinberg, East Germany
Harry E. Luther, Director, Bromeliad Identification Center
he Bromeliad Society, Inc. in cooperation with the Marie Selby Botanical Gardens announces the creation of an internship involving intensive study of bromeliads for the summer of 1985. Selby Gardens operates an intern program for college-level students who have demonstrated an interest in pursuing a career in horticulture, botany, or a related field. Interns are trained in various specialties each year at the Gardens. This is the first year that funds have been made available for a bromeliad trainee. Applications are solicited from interested students. The Gardens and BSI representatives will screen the applications for this 14-week, 40-hour work and study week program. The successful candidate will be awarded a stipend of $10.00 per day and living quarters.
The work portion will be assigned and supervised by the Director of the Bromeliad Identification Center. The study portion will be devoted to a project mutually agreed upon by the intern and the Director of BIC. The study proposal will accompany, normally, each application, and must be approved within the first two weeks of the program.
In order to complete the program satisfactorily, the intern is expected to complete a project report of general interest and of satisfactory quality. The report will be forwarded to the Journal editor for possible publication.
The Director of the Bromeliad Identification Center welcomes suggestions from BSI members for relevant projects. Continuation of the program will be considered by the BSI Board of Directors annually.
811 South Palm Avenue, Sarasota, Florida 33577
Edmundo Pereira and Elton M. C. Leme
here are two interesting species of bromeliad found in the Brazilian State of Espirito Santo: Aechmea warasii E. Pereira and A. racinae L. B. Smith. Two varieties of the latter, tubiformis E. Pereira and erecta L. B. Smith also grow in that region.
In November 1979, Roberto Anselmo Kautsky, a collector of orchids and bromeliads, discovered in the County of Domingos Martins, Espirito Santo, a bromeliad related to both. A. warasii and A. racinae but showing characteristics distinguishing it from both. Since these characteristics were of an intermediate nature, the collected specimen was described as A. racinae var. intermedia.
|Photo by E. M. C. Leme|
|Fig. 7: Comparison of inflorescences of Aechmea warasii var. intermedia (left) and A. warasii var. warasii (right).|
After the first plant was collected, other specimens of the new variety were brought in from the country and from these it was possible to make new observations which revealed aspects that had not been noted previously. With this evidence, we began to think that relating this plant to A. racinae was a mistake. The new variety shows, among other characteristics, an inflorescence occasionally branched at the base, and blue petals, both typical of A. warasii. We have concluded, therefore, that it is necessary to describe a new combination and add an emendation as follows:
Aechmea warasii E. Pereira var. intermedia (E. Pereira) Pereira et Leme comb. nov. et desc. emend.
Differt a forma typica ovario oblongo, breviter pedicellato, roseo, et sepalis leviter albiazureis.
Basionym: Aechmea racinae L. B. Smith var. intermedia E. Pereira (Bradea, vol. III, no. 7, p. 47, 1980.)
Type: Kautsky 460 (holotype, HB 69535), Domingos Martins, Espirito Santo, Nov. 20, 1979.
A. warasii var. intermedia can be differentiated from the typical A. warasii on the basis of certain elements such as an oblong, short pedicel, rosy ovary, as well as whitish-blue sepals. Until now little has been known about the geographic distribution and ecology of this new variety except that its flowering period takes place between the months of October and November while the typical form blossoms between August and September. The var. intermedia can be cultivated successfully under humid and diffusely illuminated environments.
Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
Bradley C. Bennett
illandsia balbisiana Schultes was named in honor of Giovanni Balbis, an Italian botanist (Padilla 1973, p. 82). Commonly called the reflexed wild pine, it is distributed from the Florida Keys north to Osceola County and is a common epiphyte in central and southern Florida. Low temperatures limit the distribution of T. balbisiana in Florida. Benzing (1980, p. 211-212) reported the death of this and other bromeliads in the Big Cypress Swamp following below-freezing temperatures.
The bulbous rosette, characteristic of T. balbisiana, may be erect or pendant. Solitary rosettes are most often erect. Vegetative offshoots are arranged radially from the base of the parent plant (Fig. 8). Leaves of T. balbisiana are flexuous, narrowly triangular, 20-60 cm long, and have long-attenuate apices. The leaf surfaces are densely lepidote. Pseudobulbs formed by the leaf bases are 5-25 cm long and often are occupied by ants. Floral scapes are erect or ascending and up to 50 cm in length. They may be simple or branched. Floral bracts are usually red at anthesis but in some individuals these remain green. The violet petals are 3-4.5 cm long. Stamens are exerted. The stigma may be exerted or included. T. balbisiana "blooms sparingly through the winter months but abundantly from March to October" (Craighead 1963, p. 62). This species is probably self-fertilizing in Florida, but little else is known of its reproductive biology.
|Photo by the author.|
|Fig. 8: Vegetative reproduction of Tillandsia balbisiana growing on scrub oak.|
Unlike some of Florida's epiphytic bromeliads T balbisiana is not exclusive in habitat or host preference. It grows in cypress heads and strands, dwarf cypress prairies, mixed swamps, hammocks, pine flatwoods, and mangrove swamps but is rare in pop ash and pond apple swamps. In a sample of 3789 epiphytes from pop ash-pond apple swamps I found only two individuals of T. balbisiana, though it was common in adjacent cypress and mixed swamp communities. It is found on a variety of host species and is especially common on cypress (Taxodium distichum). It is one of the few epiphytes that grow on the papery bark of the introduced melaleuca (Melaleuca quinquenervia). Tillandsia fasciculata, T. paucifolia, T. polystachia, T. recurvata, and T. usneoides are common associates.
The T. balbisiana is a sun-loving epiphyte and grows best in the canopy of its hosts. It may be found also in the subcanopy and, more rarely, as a rooted terrestrial. It seldom flowers in low light intensities; the leaves of plants growing under such conditions are longer than leaves of the canopy plants.
CAM, or crassulacean acid metabolism, is an important attribute permitting T. balbisiana to live in the xeric canopy of its host species. This alternate photo-synthetic pathway has been demonstrated in T. balbisiana collected in Venezuela (Medina 1974) and probably occurs in the Florida populations as well. An adaptation to drought, CAM is found in several plant groups occupying xeric habitats including cacti, sedums, and tillandsioid bromeliads. The stomates of CAM plants are closed during the day when water-loss potential is the greatest. Carbon dioxide is fixed or captured at night when stomates are open. During daylight hours the fixed carbon dioxide is released within the plant. Energy derived from sunlight is then used to synthesize carbohydrates.
Another important adaptation for epiphytic existence is the dense trichome cover of T. balbisiana. Water and minerals are adsorbed through the bromeliad trichome. A possible function of trichomes, which has not been investigated, is mechanical protection against herbivores. When tent caterpillars damaged epiphytic bromeliads in the Big Cypress Swamp during the 1981-1982 winter, I observed that thick-leaved species with dense trichome garments such as T. balbisiana and T. fasciculata were not harmed. Both are CAM species.
Plant size, leaf size and shape, bract color, and degree of inflorescence branching are extremely variable in T. balbisiana. The relative influences of genetics and environment, although important, are not known. Introgression between T. balbisiana and T. polystachia may contribute to the variability in these taxa. T. polystachia, in Florida, is a presumed hybrid of T. balbisiana and T. fasciculata (Luther 1978) (Read 1984).
Much remains to be learned about T. balbisiana although it is one of the more common bromeliads in Florida.
Benzing, D. H. The Biology of the bromeliads. Eureka, CA: Mad River Press; 1980.
Craighead, F. C. Orchids and other air plants of the Everglades National Park. Coral Gables, FL: University of Miami Press; 1963.
Luther, H. E. Notes on native Florida bromeliads. J. Bromel. Soc. 28:178-180; 1978.
Medina, E. Dark CO2 fixation, habitat preference and evolution within the Bromeliaceae. Evolution. 28:667-686.
Padilla, V. Bromeliads: a descriptive listing ... New York: Crown Publishers, Inc.; 1973.
Read, R. W. Natural hybridization among Tillandsia in Florida. Gardner, S., ed. Bromeliaceae old: proceedings of the 1982 World Bromeliad Conference; 1982 June 10-13; Corpus Christi, TX. Corpus Christi Bromeliad Society. 1984: 98-104.
Chapel Hill, North Carolina
lthough most streptocalyx species have very attractive inflorescences they are not found frequently in collections because the leaves form big, very spiny rosettes. The most colorful species is the Ecuadorian S. biflorus with its bright red inner rosette leaves providing a beautiful color contrast with the orange-yellow primary bracts and the pale blue flowers. Since L. B. Smith writes on page 1517 of his work, Bromelioideae, that S. biflorus is "known only from fragments," it seems to me necessary to present color photos (see both front and back covers) of this beautiful plant with the following description:
Plant stemless, propagating by short stolons. Leaves numerous, forming a spreading rosette of a diameter of 1-1.2 m (in cultivation); sheaths conspicuous and merging with the blades, up to 5 cm wide and 10 cm high, dark castaneous-brown in the basal half, green in the upper half with even margins. Blades 50-60 cm long, subligulate, above the sheath 2 cm wide, attenuate to a pungent tip, slightly canaliculate, sublaxly serrulate with greenish-brown, spreading spines 2 mm long, when young laxly lepidote, later glabrous and then lustrous. Inner rosette leaves erect at anthesis bright red, postfloral turning to green. Scape short, postfloral ±8 cm long, 1.5 cm thick, green glabrous. Scape bracts subfoliate, erect, longer than the inflorescence, with a short, broad, ovate sheath; this is 3 cm wide and 2 cm high, greenish, blades bright carmine-red, gradually transforming into the primary bracts. Inflorescence much shorter than the rosette leaves and the basal scape bracts, subcapitate, bipinnate, up to 7 cm long and 8 cm in diameter. Primary bracts densely spirostichous, the basal (outer) ones broad-triangular with an excavate sheath; this is 4 cm wide and 2 cm high, pale lemon-yellow; the blade 5-6 cm long, in the basal half orange-yellow, in the upper one bright carmine-red, densely lepidote and denticulate at the margin. Upper (inner) primary bracts smaller than the outer ones, uniform orange-yellow, minutely dentate and cucculate at the tip; all primary bracts much exceeding the 2-flowered subsessile spikes. Floral bracts membranous, thin, extremely carinate, apiculate, dentate at the keel, 1/3 longer than the ovary, but much shorter than the sepals. These are slightly asymmetric, mucronate, 12-15 mm long, the apex very finely obconic; petals up to 35 mm long, naked, pale blue-violet (not pink as observed by Dodson and Thien). Stamens and style included; ovary angled, 1 cm thick, 0.7 cm high; ovules subapical, obtuse.
The plant is known only from the type-locality. It was first (1962) collected by Dodson and Thien, No. 2070, along the Rio Tope in a tropical rain forest near Topo, Pastaza, East Ecuador, at an altitude of 1300 m. We collected our plant near Lago Agrio, Dptm. Napa, in a wet forest, growing terrestrially at an altitude of 600 m, collecting no. B.G.H. 65480, 1984.
Heidelberg, West Germany
Mark A. Dimmitt
n the July-August 1984 issue of the Journal, Dr. Lyman Smith and I published the description of a new species, Tillandsia sonorensis. After the article was in the press, we discovered that this species had been published by Dr. Werner Rauh in "Bromelienstudien. I. Neue und wenig bekannte Arten aus Peru und anderen Ländern" (IX Mitteilung). Tropische und Subtopische Pflanzenwelt 31:5-7; 1979.
Professor Rauh named the species in honor of Betty Gay who, with her husband Ed, owns the Cactus Ranchito in California. The type locality is in the State of Chihuahua. The Sonoran collections reported in this Journal represent a range extension.
The authors regret the confusion this error has caused.
Mark A. Dimmitt
|Fig. 9: Dr. Henry Nehrling|
enry Nehrling was one of the earliest American horticulturists interested enough in bromeliads to write extensively about them and to gather a large collection. It is not known if he tried to hybridize bromeliads although he had the knowledge as shown by his extensive work with caladiums and amaryllis. He corresponded with and visited Theodore L. Mead who was even better known for his fancy caladium, amaryllis, and orchid hybrids, and for his large collection of palms and many other plants. Correspondence from Dr. Nehrling to Mr. Mead now being researched may tell us more about the influence of one on the other and about their mutual interest in bromeliads. The origin of the title "doctor" also remains to be identified.
In describing himself, Dr. Nehrling explains his philosophy: "In both the cultivation, and enjoyment of gardens is peace, rest and contentment. Pleasure is not a luxury of life, but one of its necessities, and ornamental horticulture is one of the truest and most stimulating pleasures in life...."
When Dr. Nehrling died suddenly in November 1929 in Naples, Florida, he was so well known in Florida and in many other parts of the world that the local newspaper editor reprinted a 1925 biographical sketch, but omitted any mention of the last four years of his life. That sketch, however, serves admirably to introduce the man and some of his descriptions of bromeliads.
He wrote weekly installments on an immense array of horticultural subjects in the American Eagle of Estero, Florida (near Ft. Myers) from 1922 to 1929. The columns were republished in 1944 by that newspaper as My Garden in Florida and Miscellaneous Horticultural Notes with a strong effort made by the editor to arrange the material by subject. Many of those notes and other Nehrling writings were collected and edited by Alfred and Elizabeth Kay in The Plant World in Florida, from the Published Manuscripts of Dr. Henry Nehrling, and published in New York by Macmillan in 1933.
The biographical sketch from The American Eagle and the first part of the chapter, "Florida Air Gardens" from My Garden in Florida, follow. The remainder of that chapter and other parts of the book will be reprinted here from time to time in a historical series.
|Estero, Florida||November 28, 1929|
[The following life sketch of
the late Dr. Henry Nehrling was written by Prof. E. L. Lord, in 1925 and
published in "Fruits and Flowers," a monthly paper devoted to Florida horticulture. It was also published in The American Eagle of Sept. 17, 1925. It is
the best biographical data we have at hand pertaining to this great man and we
are reprinting it here for the information of our readers.
Dr. Henry Nehrling, ornithologist, botanist and plant breeder, was born in Sheboygan County, Wis., May 9, 1853, of German-American parentage. He received his early education in the public schools of Wisconsin, later attending the Teachers' Seminary at Addison, Ill., from which he graduated in 1873. The following year he married Miss Sophia Schoff of Oak Park, Ill. While his vocation for many years was that of a teacher, it was only an instrument by means of which he could study nature. In order to study the birds of the United States he taught school in several states, particularly in Illinois, Missouri and Texas. He spent five years in Texas teaching and studying native birds (1897[sic]-1884). In 1884 he became interested in Florida, and brought a tract of land at Gotha, near Orlando. This tract of land was visited for the first time in 1886. In 1887 he was made deputy collector and inspector of customs at the Port of Milwaukee. He resigned this position in 1890 to become secretary and custodian of the Public Museum of Milwaukee.
During all this period he contributed generously to various periodicals—German, English and American. Most of his articles were on ornithological subjects. His first book, "Die Nordamericanishe Vogelwelt," was published in 1891, and was followed by "Our Native Birds of Song and Beauty" (2 vols.). This work was published in 1893, and a second edition was brought out in 1896.
During the period from 1884 onward his mind was fixed on Florida as his future permanent home. With this idea in mind he built a greenhouse in Milwaukee, and collected seeds and other plant material from various correspondents in the tropics. His series of articles describing the plants in his Gotha garden give in interesting detail the source from which many of these plants were obtained. He corresponded actively with many collectors and breeders of rare plants, and was enabled to obtain many plants that had never been before brought to the notice of horticulturists.
In 1893 Dr. Nehrling spent much time visiting the Columbian Exposition at Chicago. While many tropical plants, particularly palms and ornamentals, were of interest to him, nothing attracted his time and attention more than the exhibit of fancy leaved Caladiums in the Brazilian section of the Exposition. These were largely the product of the breeding work of Adolf Leitze of Rio de Janeiro. By combining the characteristics of five or six species of this genus Mr. Leitze had produced a most wonderful addition to the ornamentals where are characterized by colored foliage. The richness of color, brilliancy and delicacy of these wonderful plants made an impression upon Dr. Nehrling which he never forgot. While Mr. Leitze later produced many more varieties, this exhibit outshone all other flower and foliage plants at the exposition. Since that time many other varieties of fancy leaved caladiums have been produced so that there is nothing that rivals this glorious product of the plant breeder. Much of the breeding and popularization of this plant has been the work of Dr. Nehrling.
Soon after the Exposition Dr. Nehrling resigned his post in the Museum at Milwaukee, and bringing his family and plant collection with him, settled at Gotha, on the tract of land that he had bought ten years before. He still continued to receive many plants and seeds from all over the world. He was made a collaborator of the Office of Foreign Seed and Plant Introduction of the Bureau of Plant Industry. From this office he received many plants, but also furnished them with plant material obtained from other sources. His collection of Palms, Bamboos and other tropical plants made his garden the Mecca of horticulturists who came to Florida, as well as a perpetual source of wonder to the plantsmen of Florida who were lucky enough to visit it.
Due to his enthusiasm and industry he was able to gather together full collections of the various plants in which he was especially interested.
In consequence his studies of tropical plants are the result of active association with the living plant rather than the type of description and study based on herbarium material. Many plants do not lend themselves to herbarium study, either due to the size and weight of the distinguishing parts or to their delicacy. This is particularly true of certain tropical families, such as palms and bamboos. These plants, so characteristic of tropical landscapes, have been much neglected by American botanists. It is a fact that more thorough study and a wider and more thoughtful use of such exotics is of especial value to Florida, whose development depends much on emphasizing the more tropical aspects of her landscapes and home plantings.
Dr. Nehrling's great interest in the Amaryllidaceae resulted in "Die Amaryllis" (1908). His interest in this group was not confined alone to the taxonomy and morphology, but he has done much breeding, having had an active part in the production of the modern forms of this plant. His studies of the palms of Florida, published serially in The American Eagle, are a valuable contribution to the literature on the palm, and is very valuable to those who are interested in the behavior of these plants when grown in Florida.
The transference of his activities from Gotha was due to his interest in fancy leaved Caladiums. Due to the fact that the soil and climate of Gotha were not well adapted to the growing and breeding of these plants, he bought some land at Naples, Fla., in 1917, and transferred his caladiums there. Not only is the soil better for caladiums at Naples, but the added protection from injurious temperatures has enabled Dr. Nehrling to grow many other species of tropical plants, especially palms and Ficus. In 1922 Dr. Nehrling moved permanently to Naples, where all his breeding work is being carried on.
While Dr. Nehrling has produced many new and wonderful varieties of plants, it is in the new varieties of caladiums that the work of this plant breeder is the most noteworthy...."
Bromeliads, Native and Exotic, All Members of Pineapple Family.
Oak and Cypress Trees Ideal Hosts
All epiphytes are inhabitants of trees. The tree supplies them with a home, gives them a chance to live and to multiply, and protects them against ravages of browsing animals. The fine, small, fluffy seeds are easily carried by the wind to great distances. They find a foothold in the fissures of the rough bark of the trunks and larger limbs, particularly of Live Oaks, where they germinate readily and rapidly. Often large patches of the bark are densely covered with small seedlings, and even the smallest branches are encircled by dense masses of them. Evidently they derive all their nourishment from the air. For this reasons they are popularly known as Air Plants or Air Pines. They never injure their host plant like the parasites do, whose roots are—so to speak—grafted in the branch on which they grow, living entirely on the sap of their host. The Bromeliads and most of our tree Orchids are true epiphytes; the Mistletoe is a typical parasite. The former two never injure the tree, while the latter may finally kill it.
The epiphytes, particularly the Bromeliads, form a most charming additional ornament of the trees of the forest. They are not found on all the trees, however. Our noble Magnolia grandiflora is rarely selected by the various epiphytes as a host plant. The Live Oak is their favorite. These monarchs of the forest—veritable giants with broad crowns and thick, horizontal limbs and always extremely pictures so densely covered with Orchids, and particularly with Bromeliads, that they exhibit most lovely and beautiful air gardens. Such a forest giant in extreme South Florida forms one of the most wonderful pictures in the landscape. They are the dream of the idealist. The nature lover goes into raptures over them. The botanist and plant lover always views them with interest and intense pleasure.
Even the rather stunted Live Oaks in the scrub lands of the south-western coast regions are covered with countless numbers of different Bromeliads. I have counted seven species on one tree. As these dwarf Oaks do not afford much shade all the leaves of these plants vary from reddish-brown to a deep maroon-purple. The Red Cypress (Taxodium distichum) is another tree often covered with exquisite tufts of Tillandsia, despite its rather dry, fibery bark. When the brilliant red flower-spikes of Tillandsia fasciculata are at their best, in March, April and May, the cypress swamps of South Florida are imbued with an indescribable charm.
The old wide Custard Apple Trees (Annona glabra), often hanging over creeks and ponds, are always covered with many epiphytes, especially Bromeliads. On such trees near my home at Naples-on-the-Gulf, I have collected the following species: Ferns—Asplenium serratum (the Florida Birds-nest Fern) Phlebodium aureum, Campyloneurom phyllitidis, Vittaria lineata (Grass Fern), Nephrolepis exaltata (Boston Fern) and N. biserrata. Orchids—Epidendrum tampense, E. cochleatum, E. nocturnum, E. umbellatum, E. anceps, Dendrophylax lindenii, Cyrtopodium punctatum, Polystachya luteola, Bletia verecunda, Oncidium luridum and O. sphacelatum; Bromeliads—Tillandsia alvifolia, T. bartramii, T. fasciculata, T. balbisiana, T. circinata, T. utriculata, T. recurvata, T. festucoides and T. valenzuelana. A few sprays of Denropogon (Tillandsia usneoides) were also present.
Bromeliads are never found in dry places; rarely in the high pine woods; more commonly in high hammocks, and most abundantly in low forest lands and in Cypress swamps. They seem to grow most luxuriantly where the vapor rises upwards during the night, supplying the plants with the necessary moisture or nourishment.
I have always been a great admirer of the Spanish moss (Tillandsia usneoides), though there are some people who are unable to appreciate its distinct beauty and its great ornamental value. It is the most abundant of all our Bromeliads and is always in evidence. It forms an ideal feature in the landscape and is extremely graceful, its long, soft, gray festoons and streamers hanging down from many a forest tree. It does not seem to find the conditions favorable on the branches of Magnolia grandiflora, as we rarely find it settled on this noble tree. On the other hand, it covers one of my Australian Silk Oaks (Grevillea robusta) and Cunninghamia sinesis completely with its dense gray soft festoons. Live Oaks are always particular favorites of it, and so are the Willow Oaks (Quercus phellos), while the species of Juniperus and Cupressus are not chosen.
Many people in Florida harbor the mistaken idea that it shelters insects and diseases, and others think that this interesting plant, one of the most lovely and important features of the Florida landscape, is injurious to our shade trees. They make the mistake of not knowing the difference between an epiphyte and a parasite. It always takes its nourishment form the air; never from its host. The tree only serves as a support. Growing too thickly, it may now and then smother a few small branches, but it never commits serious harm. In orange groves, however, it cannot be tolerated, as it interferes considerably with the setting, maturing and harvesting of the fruit.
I have always admired the old picturesque Live Oaks which are always covered with the dense and long streamers—often 6 to 8 feet long—of the Spanish Moss. In early March the flowers appear in considerable numbers. They are three-petalled, glossy yellowish-green and slightly fragrant. Though multiplying by its hairy light seeds, it has a much more effective way of getting established on trees favorable to its likes. The wind frequently detaches small branches and even entire festoons and carries them from one tree to the other, where they soon get established.
Wherever the Spanish Moss is found in abundance, particularly on high pine-land, this representative of the Pineapple family is a common plant, growing in small, soft, grayish tufts, often among the Spanish Moss and often by itself on the branches of trees. We immediately notice the relationship between the two species, though its growth is entirely different. The flowers are violet blue. In my place at Gotha, Fla., it is common wherever the Spanish Moss grows. It has settled even on the shingles of the house roof, on the posts in my lath-house and covers the telephone wires completely. Here at Naples, 225 miles farther south, for one reason or another, the Spanish moss is rarely seen and this little Tillandsia is likewise very rare.
This is a dainty little gem. It is a common plant from Georgia southward, being abundantly found in all the hammocks of Florida. At Naples, on the Gulf Coast, it is one of the most conspicuous ornaments of all the Live Oaks, and found always in company of at least five other Tillandsias. The other day I found a large specimen of our largest species, T. utriculata, and underneath it a large tuft of this species, measuring 14 inches in diameter by 12 inches in height. The leaves were entirely blood-red, crimson-maroon and glossy, needle-like in shape, very dense and upright. In deep shade the leaves are more or less green, but where the rays of the sun fall upon them they are always beautifully red. The flowers appear on long slender spikes. They are of a very pretty blue color.
Is a little large, with grass-like leaves, grayish green, covered with soft scales, recurving, and as far as I know, never of a red color. It grows in large tufts on hammock trees and is very ornamental. The flowers are beautifully violet-blue and are abundantly produced.
This beautiful small species, almost a miniature of T. fasciculata, is not very common; at least I have not found it southside of the Cypress swamps in Orange County south of Orlando. It grows in dense tufts. The leaves are small, recurved, whitish lepidote, and in full sun, of a pretty bluish-maroon color. I collected several specimens near my garden at Naples on small Live Oak Trees. The flowers are of a lilac color and very pretty, growing on stems of a pinkish-rose color, overlaid with a whitish bloom.
This is a most elegant, beautiful and very rare species of medium growth. It established itself in Palm Cottage Gardens, though it naturally occurs in Cypress Swamps many miles distant. In the spring of 1919 I found three fine clumps of it in the garden, one in the top of a Cupressus knightiana; a second one on the horizontal branch of a Live Oak, and a third one on a branch of Pittosporum tobira, only a few feet above the ground. The limb on which it settled is scarcely half an inch in diameter. How did this Bromeliad come into the garden? I do not know. The winds must have carried the seeds from a great distance. I was extremely delighted when I discovered it. The thin leaves are about 12 inches or more long, glaucous green, suffused with deep crimson and growing in a dense and most elegant rosette, recurving to all sides. The flower-scape is very slender, about 15 to 18 inches long, brilliant rosy-scarlet, overlaid with a thin mealy substance, and the conspicuous flower-bracts show the same color. The flowers are violet-blue, contrasting beautifully with the brilliancy of the stem and bracts. It flowers late in June, though the vivid red of the scape is observed early in May, and the flower-bracts are still very striking two months after the flowers have faded. I took one of the clumps with me to my new garden at Naples, fastening it with other species to the trunk of a Red Maple.
This is a very pretty and a very interesting little species, common in South Florida, particularly on Live Oaks and in Cypress swamps. It flowers early in April and it usually at its best at Easter time. The growth is bulb-like, rather slender, with a rosette of long, narrow, often twisted leaves which are whitish lepidote. The flower stem is slender, about 8 to 10 inches long and provided with long narrow bract-leaves, standing quite a distance form each other. The stem, as well as the bract-leaves, is deep rosy-red, overlaid with a white scurfy substance which gives them a beautiful pink color. The petals of the flowers are lilac. The blossoms, though quite showy, are only of short duration, but the red flower-stems and the red bracts keep their color for months. The plant grows in small clusters, never in such intricate masses as T. circinata, which occupies with it often the same branch. It is a very lovely and distinct species and thrives well under cultivation, but grows best if fastened to the branch of a tree or a palm.
Reprinted from The American Eagle, Nov. 28, 1929, and from My
Garden in Florida, Estero, FL: The American Eagle, 1944-1946.
Drawings from Lyman B. Smith and Robert Jack Downs, Tillandsioideae. New York: Hafner Press, 1977: 915 and 919.
Harry E. Luther
ork toward publishing a study of the Bromeliaceae of Ecuador with Dr. A. J. Gilmartin has made it apparent that two popular and colorful simple-spiked guzmania species are usually misidentified. They are discussed below.
Guzmania melinonis Regel
This widespread species is native to wet forests from the Guianas to Peru and Bolivia. In the Andean regions it is restricted to the eastern (Amazonian) slopes usually at fairly low elevations. It can be characterized by a simple, ellipsoid inflorescence with broad red or orange floral bracts and bright yellow tubular flowers. In Ecuador the only species of similar form and coloration are G. fusispica Mez & Sodiro and G. bracteosa (André) André ex Mex both of which are native to the western slopes of the Andes. Cultivated specimens of G. melinonis are often labeled as G. berteroniana (native to Hispanola and Puerto Rico) or G. erythrolepis (Panama and the Greater Antilles). Most of the cultivated plants originated in Amazonian Ecuador, Peru, and Bolivia. Figure 10 shows a plant from Napo Province, Ecuador, which flowered at Selby Botanical Gardens, Sarasota, Florida.
Guzmania remyi L. B. Smith
A rather obscure species, it is cited in Lyman B. Smith's Tillandsioideae (page 1341) as known from the type collection only. It is, in fact, an abundant plant well represented in herbaria and horticulture, but is very difficult to identify correctly using only the literature. G. remyi is hardly distinguishable from G. melinonis in the nonflowering state. In bloom, the two are strikingly different. The inflorescence of G. remyi (fig. 11) is cylindrical, usually much longer than that of G. melinonis, with pink or rose-purple bracts that may be tipped white. The corolla is pure white. This species is restricted to the western slopes of the Andes in central and northern Ecuador. It may occur in adjacent southwest Colombia. It is often sympatric with G. monostachia (Linnaeus) Rusby ex Mex. In cultivation it is nearly always known as G. melinonis. Guzmania melinonis var. quitensis Rauh is a synonym. The specimen shown in figure 11 is from Pichincha Prov., Ecuador flowered at Selby Gardens.
Both species are well adapted to cultivation and flower regularly. The inflorescences of these and similar guzmanias are, unfortunately, of short duration.
|Photos by Bob Wands for Selby Gardens.|
|Fig. 10: The broad, red or orange floral bracts and bright yellow, tubular flowers of Guzmania melinonis.|
|Fig. 11: The G. remyi cylindrical inflorescence has pink or rose-purple bracts tipped with white; the corolla is pure white.|
May A. Moir
hen I was growing up in Honolulu "Pineapple lilies" were a popular garden plant and our mothers grew them in the ground in flower beds along with all sorts of other bedding plants. Dog owners found that their pets enjoyed these plants as drinking fountains much to the exasperation of the gardeners.
It was not until I grew up and had my own garden that I learned that my Pineapple lilies were Billbergia pyramidalis and indeed related to the eating pineapple. About 30 years ago when we started landscaping with bromeliads we used masses of the B. pyramidalis and Neoregelia spectabilis, another old-timer, to fill space.
As more exciting new bromeliads were acquired (many grown from seed) the B. pyramidalis and neos were relegated to background material as they seemed to grow in almost any condition. I continue to grow a lot of pyramidalis and look forward to their blooming in August, September and October depending on their location in the garden. By picking up the whole plant in bloom one has an instant bouquet.
In the arrangement shown in figure 12, the bamboo was used by itself when fresh and leafy. For the second week whole plants of B. pyramidalis were used at the base of the bamboo. They keep well so long as the cups are filled with water. The same type of arrangement was made by using Guzmania lingulata.
|Photo by Robert Chinn, Honolulu Academy of Arts.|
|Fig. 12: Arrangement using Billbergia pyramidalis.|
s Victoria Padilla noted in her article in the January-February issue of this year, the forerunner of the Society was a bromeliad round robin. That practice of sharing information has been carried on by the affiliated society newsletters. They come in all shapes and sizes, they have all kinds of titles, and one of the most ambitious doesn't even have a title. They have a common characteristic: they try to teach. There are highly organized series on the botany of bromeliads (both Atlanta and Houston), courses on nomenclature (at least seven newsletter editors trying hard to cope with botanical Latin, the International Codes, and regional pronunciations of long, short, and medium A's (try fascicul(a)ta for example). There are notes and observations about every possible aspect of growing bromeliads from starting seeds, through recovering from frost damage.
These newsletters and bulletins are monthly publications. They are carefully written. Many have illustrations. They are brief and personal. They have another characteristic and that is that they share the wealth; they borrow back and forth always with the obvious intent of giving their own readers the best information that the editors can find.
This article began with a four-inch stack of the newsletters generously contributed during the past year. They have all been read, including who provided what refreshments. They have been sorted by subject matter. Now, we propose to publish, from time to time interesting paragraphs from those newsletters.
This endeavor, is of course, a descendent of VP's "Regional Reflections" We shall try to foster (no pun intended) the teaching process, to encourage all of the hard-working editors to keep up the good work, and to develop a more systematic approach to this aspect of the Journal for the future. Your constructive comments are always welcome. Not to worry about literary perfection; it's the subject matter that counts.
Sphagnum moss is most familiar as a floral dressing or as a growing medium for orchids and bog plants. It is probably even more familiar in the form of peat moss, used as a potting and seeding medium. It is a friendly plant, very beneficial, readily available, and well worth knowing.
There are more than 350 species of sphagnum moss in the north temperate zone, most commonly found in bogs, usually in the sun. Sphagnum forms dense mats varying in color form almost white to light green and yellow, all shades of pink to deep red and brown. It sometimes grows more than a foot high. It is soft and spongy, not dependent on the soil for water as it has no true roots, but draws water through the walls of its stems and leaves, retaining the moisture in a system of delicate capillary tubes. Like a sponge, water can be squeezed out of the moss, yet the moss will not collapse, but will be ready to absorb water again. It is this property that makes sphagnum in its fresh, dried, and decayed states valuable in horticulture.
My introduction to sphagnum in its fresh state came with the purchase of a very large bag to use as dressing in a terrarium. Those needs did not make a dent in my bag. As cryptanthus are my first love among the bromeliads, I remembered reading something about growing cryptanthus in moss in Kathy Dorr's Cryptanthus. I tried it with excellent results: after six months my cryptanthus in moss were growing as well, or better, than those in soil mix.
The true test came another six months later when we returned from five months in Ireland. My cryptanthus fell into two categories: dead and alive. I lost every one that had been in soil mix and every one that was in moss was alive, in spite of the rock-hard state of the moss.
Kit Hilbers in The Atlanta Bromeliad Society Offset
Sick List: Mrs. Moir writes that her husband, W. W. G. Moir, an honorary trustee and regular contributor to the Journal, has been confined to bed for the past several weeks. The Moir's success with bromeliads in their garden has been an inspiration to members fortunate enough to visit them. Mrs. Moir's series on bromeliad arrangements is continuing in this issue. Their address is 3311 Kahawalu Dr., Honolulu, HI 96817.
Wilhelm Weber, honorary trustee of the Society and frequent contributor to the Journal has been undergoing treatment at the Radiology Clinic of the Karl Marx University in Leipzig, but expects to return to his home by the end of February for a recovery period. His research and his meticulously detailed black and white drawings are well known to Journal readers. Herr Weber's address is: DDR-7251 Waldsteinberg, Forstweg 14, German Democratic Republic.
Chet Blackburn, 720 Millertown Rd., Auburn, CA 95603. Term: 1984-1986.
Paul T. Isley III, 1400 3rd St. , Manhattan Beach, CA 90266. Term: 1984-1986.
Stan Oleson, 1030 Alma, San Pedro, CA 90731. Term: 1985-1987.
Linda Harbert, 2488 E. 49th, Tulsa, OK 74105. Term: 1985-1987.
Connie Johnson, 13075 SW 60th Avenue, Miami, FL 33156. Term: 1983-1985.
Carol M. Johnson, 3961 Markham Woods Road, Longwood, FL 32750. Term: 1984-1986.
Ervin J. Wurthmann, 815 Chastain Rd., Seffner, FL 33584. Term: 1985-1987.
Jack B. Grubb, 10008 Hyde Place, River Ridge, LA 70123. Term: 1984-1986.
Herbert Plever, 172-34 133rd Avenue, #8A, Jamaica, NY 11434. Term: 1985-1987.
Ron J. Lucibell, Botany Dept., Queen Mary College, London, E1 4NS, England. Term: 1983-1985.
Hedi Guelz Roesler, Samlandweg 1, 6368 Bad Virbel 2, Federal Republic of Germany. Term: 1984-1986.
Bobbie H. Beard, 140 Morningview Dr., Vicksburg, MS 39180. Term: 1985-1987.
Tom J. Montgomery, Jr., 206 Eastway, Galena Park, TX 77547. Term: 1984-1986.
Robert E. Soppe, 3236 S.E. Clinton, Portland, OR 97202. Term: 1985-1987.
David Benzing, Dept. of Biology, Oberlin College, Oberlin, OH 44074. Term: 1983-1985.
Valerie L. Steckler, 40 Oak Valley Court, Austin, TX 78736. Term: 1983-1985.
George Anderson, 4409 Apollo Drive, Metairie, LA 70003. Term: 1984-1986.
H. W. Wiedman, Dept. of Biological Science, California State University-Sacramento, Sacramento, CA 95819. Term: 1984-1986.
Nat De Leon, 9300 Old Cutler Rd., Miami, FL 33156. Term: 1985-1987.
Gerald A. Raack, 472 Greenhollow Dr., Pataskala, OH. Term: 1985-1987.
Thomas U. Lineham, 1508 Lake Shore Drive, Orlando, FL 32803.
Edward C. Hall, 1111 Glen Garry Circle, Maitland, FL 32751.
The purpose of this nonprofit corporation is to promote and maintain public and scientific interest in the research, development, preservation, and distribution of Bromeliaceae, both natural and hybrid, throughout the world. You are invited to join.
Vice President – Edgar Smith, 4415 Vandelia St., Dallas, TX 75219.
Corresponding Secretary – Danita Rafalovich, 3956 Minerva Ave., Los Angeles, CA 90066.
Membership Secretary – Linda Harbert, 2488 E. 49th, Tulsa, OK 74105.
Recording Secretary – Connie Johnson, 13075 SW 60th Ave., Miami, FL 33156.
Treasurer – David Gardner, 33 Camden PI., Corpus Christi, TX 78412.
1984-1986: George Anderson, At-large, Chet Blackburn, California, Jack Grubb, Louisiana, Paul T. Isley III, California, Carol M. Johnson, Florida, Tom J. Montgomery, Jr., Texas, Hedi Guelz Roesler, Outer, H. W. Wiedman, At-large.
1985-1987: Bobbie H. Beard, Southern, Nat De Leon, At-large, Linda Harbert, Central, Stan Oleson, California, Herbert Plever, Northeastern, Gerald A. Raack, At-large, Robert E. Soppe, Western, Ervin J. Wurthmann, Florida.
|Photo by E. Gross.|
Streptocalyx biflorus exhibiting its brilliant coloration at the peak of
|April 5-8||Bromeliads III, the Third Australian Bromeliad Conference, Brisbane, Queensland. Coordinator, Bromeliad Society of Queensland, P.O. Box 565, Fortitude Valley, Brisbane 4006, Qld. Australia.|
|April 13-14||Bromeliad Society of Broward County 1st Annual Show, "All-American Bromeliad Show." Dieke Auditorium, Plantation, FL. Entries only, 7-11 A.M., Friday, 12 April. Maureen and Bill Frazel (305) 474-1349.|
|April 13-14||Shreveport Regional Bromeliad Society 5th Annual Show. R. S. Barnwell Garden and Art Center, 501 Clyde Fant Parkway, Shreveport, LA. 1:00-5:00 P.M. daily. Harvey C. Beltz, 3927 Michigan Circle, Shreveport, LA 71109.|
|April 18-20||Tarrant County Bromeliad Society 9th Annual Show. Hulen Mall, 4800 S. Hulen, Fort Worth, Texas. Flo Adams (817) 467-7500.|
|April 27-28||Florida State Bromeliad Show. Sponsored by the Florida Council of Bromeliad Societies and the Bromeliad Society of South Florida. Fairchild Tropical Gardens, Old Cutler Rd., Miami. 9:30-4:30 daily. Trisha Frank, (305) 665-4369.|
|May 17-18||Bromeliad Society of Houston, Inc. 17th Annual Show. Houston Garden Center, Hermann Park, 15 Hermann Ave. Tom J. Montgomery (713) 676-2890.|
|May 25-26||Acadiana Bromeliad Society 6th Annual Show. Holiday Inn Central (Holidome), Lafayette, LA. Sat. 1:00-5:00 P.M., Sun. 10:00 A.M. - 5:00 P.M. Mrs. Lou Trahan, (318) 893-3059.|
|May 25-26||Greater Dallas-Fort Worth Bromeliad Society 14th Annual Show. Dallas Civic Garden Center, Fair Park. Ellen Hough (817) 457-2590.|
|May 31- June 1-2||Atlanta Bromeliad Society 7th Annual Show. Northlake Mall, Exit LaVista Road and I-285 East, Atlanta, GA. Displays, competition, sales. Mrs. Millie Burchardt (404) 981-4976.|