BSI Journal - Online Archive
THE BROMELIAD SOCIETY BULLETIN
The Bromeliad Society Bulletin is the official publication of The Bromeliad
Society, a non-profit corporation organized in 1950. The Bulletin is issued
six times a year. Subscription to the Bulletin is included in the annual
membership dues. There are five classes of membership: Annual, $3.50;
Foreign, $4.00; Sustaining, $5.00; Fellowship, $10.00; Life $150.00. All
memberships start with January of the current year. For membership information,
write to Mrs. Jeanne Woodbury, 1811 Edgecliff Drive, Los Angeles 26, California.
Please submit all manuscripts for publication to the editor, 647 South Saltair
Avenue, Los Angeles 49, California.
|President||David Barry, Jr.||
||Editorial Secretary||Victoria Padilla|
|Vice President||Frank Overton||
||Membership Secretary||Jeanne Woodbury|
|Treasurer||Jack M. Roth||
||Art Editor||Morris Henry Hobbs|
E. H. Palmer, President, Florida West Coast Bromeliad Society|
Lawrence Hiscock, President, Louisiana Bromeliad Society
Fritz Kubisch, President, Southern California Bromeliad Society
Robert Wilson, President, South Florida Bromeliad Society
|Board of Directors|
David Barry, Jr.
Dr. Russell Seibert
Mulford B. Foster
Wilbur G. Wood
James N. Giridlian
E. W. Ensign
O. E. Van Hyning
Henry M. Hobbs
Benjamin O. Rees
Nat. J. De Leon
Jack M. Roth
Dr. Alberto Castellanos
Fundacion Miguel Lillo
Buenos Aires, Argentina
Monsieur Charles Chevalier
(Honorary Dir. Liege Bot. Gard.)
Mr. Charles Hodgson
Heidelberg 23, Melbourne
Mr. C. H. Lankester
Cartago, Costa Rica
P. Raulino Reitz, Dir.
Herbario, "Barbosa Rodrigues"
Itajai, St. Catarina, Brasil
Mr. Walter Richter
Dr. Lyman B. Smith
Washington. D. C.
Mr. Henry Teuscher, Dir.
Montreal Botanical Garden
PICTURE ON COVER —
of Tillandsia paraënsis
, a small but beautiful species found in Colombia and
western Brazil, and also reported from Peru and Bolivia.
Leaves are a dull, glaucous green, with deep rose bracts and flowers of a deep
magenta red color, with yellow stamens. The undulated leaves were a surprise,
for all the botanical drawings of this species I have seen fail to show this
habit. The little moth above the plant is a Brazilian species, Therinia podaliriaria
The plate shows the plant about two-third actual size. M. H. Hobbs.
No article appearing in this bulletin may be reproduced without the permission of the editor.
THE WORK OF LYMAN B. SMITH
Mulford B. Foster
There is rarely a day in this
writer's work with bromeliads that some reference is not made to at least one
of the two hundred or more papers, contributions, notes, or books that Lyman B.
Smith has written on the great family Bromeliaceae.
When Dr. Smith started his
graduate work at Harvard in 1926 and selected bromeliads as the major subject
for his botanical study, neither he nor anyone else had the remotest idea that
this decision would grow into such a vast and eminent work and that the study
of bromeliads would become a life-time interest. After his first two years of
graduate work, Smith received a Sheldon Traveling Fellowship which took him, in
1929, to eastern Brazil. Here for the first time, he had the opportunity to
observe and collect bromeliads in their native state.
After one more year of
graduate study, he finished his first work, a monograph on one subgenus of
Tillandsia, and an account of the bromeliads of British Guiana. This later
became the thesis for his doctorate degree; he has published prolifically ever
From 1931 until 1947 Dr.
Smith was a member of the staff at the Gray Herbarium of Harvard University at Cambridge, Massachusetts,
Prior to 1935, he made three trips to Europe where he did considerable work at the British Museum and Kew Gardens in England, at
the botanical museums of Brussels and Liege in Belgium, and in Paris, France. While abroad, he examined the older herbarium
collections and photographed the original types of many of the first bromeliads
collected. In 1947 he joined the staff of the Botanical Department of the
Smithsonian Institution in Washington, D. C., where he is now Curator of
Phanerogams of the U. S. National Museum in that institution.
Dr. Smith made a trip to Tucuman, Argentina (See
Bromeliad Society Bulletin, 11:54) and two additional trips to Brazil. In
1952 he spent three months in southern Brazil studying bromeliad malaria in Santa Catarina with
Padre Raulino Reitz. He later made trips with Dr. Segadas Vianna and the Museu Nacional
staff to Cabo Frio, in the state of Rio
de Janeiro and to Serra do Cipo near Belo Horizonte,
Minas Gerais, where he found the new Dyckia heloisae (Bromeliads of
Brazil, p. 26) and Vriesea segadas-viannae (Bromeliads of Brazil,
p. 35). He stopped in Sao Salvador, Baia, in northern Brazil on his
return trip and made a re-collection of M. B. Foster's Hohenbergia littoralis.
In 1956-57 Dr. Smith returned
to Brazil where he spent six months in additional botanical study. This included
one week in the neighborhood of Anapolis, Goias, (near Brasilia) with Dr. Amaro Macedo for whom he named his new Bromeliad
macedoi (see Bromeliad Society Bulletin, VIII:12). Most of this
expedition was spent exploring with P. Reitz the planalto of Santa Catarina.
Several new Dyckia species were found.
Dr. Smith, however, does not
confine his work entirely to bromeliads; he is, also, a recognized authority on
the Begonia family and has published a number of papers on those plants as well
as on other plant families. For many years, he has identified thousands of
botanical specimens, other than those in Bromeliaceae, that have been sent to
the Gray Herbarium and the Smithsonian Institution.
Too many taxonomic botanists
in the past have confined their work almost exclusively to the study of dried
herbarium specimens; too few have had actual experience with the living
material or with ecological conditions under which they grow. But Lyman Smith
is interested in living as well as "preserved plants." His actual
work in the habitat areas, as well as his endless delving into the past, has
resulted in a combination of interests that has urged him into doing a thorough
research job on the Bromeliad family, and his resulting work is crystallizing
the greatest and most complete treatise ever attempted on the Bromeliaceae. His
tireless industry and his enthusiasm surpass all of the former authorities in
this family; he has dedicated his life to the study of bromeliads, and a more
devout and sincere student this family has never known. He has personally
examined and photographed more of the original early collections than has any
other person and he certainly has handled more of the recently collected
material than any other botanist.
No matter how much the layman
might try to belittle the importance of the "old dried material"
deposited in the herbaria throughout the world—without this material and its
accompanying data, there would be little on which to base any authoritative
botanical work of today. The plant lover, the collector, the horticulturist,
and the botanist may each have his own individual interest in the plant world,
but the taxonomic botanist builds and correlates the basic information for the
records that are the foundation of our present knowledge of the vegetable
world. Many plant collectors in the past, as well as those of the present, have
had a great enthusiasm and appreciation for certain plants, but unfortunately
have had little actual knowledge as to their basic position in the world of
Of the past prominent
contributors to the knowledge of the Bromeliaceae, some have done both
collecting in the field as well as determining the taxonomic classifications.
Carl Mez of Germany did most of his work with herbarium material. Both
Edouard André and A. Glaziou, Frenchmen, were indefatigable collectors, but
Glaziou in Brazil did not do the taxonomic work that André did on his
return to France after his extensive collecting trips in Colombia and Ecuador. Baker
of England wrote a monograph on the family in 1889. In his time he described
many bromeliads; and although he handled much living material in Kew Gardens, he
was not a collector in the wilds. His monograph on Bromeliaceae is one of the
few attempts to cover the entire family; and though his work is important, it
will never have the standing of the work of Carl Mez or Lyman Smith.
Beer in 1856 compiled one of
the first complete monographs on Bromeliaceae. It was a sincere and earnest
attempt, but there was so little material to work on at that time that today it
might seem to some people as though it has little value. But the question
arises — Where would we be today if it were not for those first steps? Soon
after Dr. Smith definitely placed his hand to the wheel, Dr. Mez in 1934-35
made an outstanding contribution to the field when he published his monograph
on the Bromeliaceae in Das Pflanzenreich in which he recognized fifty
different genera in the family. This was the first major treatise of the family
and will continue to be an important one for many years.
Gradually, year after year,
the works of Lyman Smith have been steadily issuing from his tireless efforts
at research with the old and the new. He now recognizes 45 genera in place of
the 50 genera of Mez.
He discarded Aregelia which
is now included in Neoregelia. (Mez did not accept this change). Bakerantha, a
genus Dr. Smith created in 1934 (it was recognized by Mez), Smith himself has
since discarded and that genus is now thrown into Hechtia. Smith has also
discarded the genera Chevaliera, Disteganthus, and Wittmackia, and all three
are now included in the genus Aechmea. He has reinstated Connellia which Mez
had discarded. Both Cryptanthopsis and Sincoraea are now included in
Orthophytum. Prionophyllum is now discarded and is included in Dyckia.
All species of Sodiroa are
now placed in the genus Guzmania; the former genus, Thecophyllum, is discarded
and is now included in Vriesea, although the two original species of
Thecophyllum are now in Guzmania.
Dr. Smith created the new
genus Fosterella and discarded Lindmania. Dr. Mez had discarded Wittrockia as a
genus and included the species in the genus Canistrum, but Dr. Smith later
restored the genus Wittrockia which he feels is valid.
These changes were made only
after much research and examination of both old and new material. So, today, we
have Dr. Smith's latest list of 45 genera which are now recognized internationally.
As busy as he always is,
Lyman Smith can always find time to do one more article for the Bromeliad
Society Bulletin, to look up one more identification, or to search endlessly to
answer one more question. He has been indeed accommodating to the Bromeliad
Society, for, after all, his scientific work is a full-time job. The climax to
his extensive and dedicated work is now in preparation — a treatise that we all
urgently need a complete monograph on bromeliads which only Lyman B. Smith can
Rt. 3, Box 658 Orlando, Florida
(Many members inquire as to
the blooming season of bromeliads — this is what one member had in bloom in her
garden this March.)
"We have been interested
in bromeliads for years and at present have approximately 65 varieties besides
native Tillandsias. The hurricane of last September wrecked our woods, but even
though the water stood over the top of the bromeliads, they came through, and
at the present time we have hundreds of Billbergia euphemiae in bloom.
We also have at the blooming stage—Aechmea lueddemaniana, Aechmea weilbachii,
Aechmea X Foster's Favorite, Aechmea schultesiana, Vriesea carinata, and Aechmea
bracteata. Even one Aechmea fasciata that bloomed last August still
retains color of bloom stalk.
"Here in South Florida
the Billbergias bloom any time during the year. B. euphemiae is in bloom
almost the year round, though the large showing comes during February, March,
and sometimes April. B pyramidalis blooms four or five times a year, and
the same holds true for B. nutans if you have a sufficient number. Aechmea
weilbachii sets most bloom about Thanksgiving to Christmas, but in 1960 we
had several blooms in February."
Mildred Masters, Homestead, Florida
Rosettes of Hechtia marnier-lapostollei
Lyman B. Smith
If one cultivates unknown bromeliads, sooner or later he finds out that he has been harboring a new
species. That is exactly what has happened to Julien Marnier-Lapostolle in his extensive garden, "Les
Cedres," at St-Jean-Cap-Ferrat ( See
Bromeliad Society Bulletin, Vol IV, pp. 55-57). I take pleasure in naming this new species
for its discoverer as follows:
HECHTIA MARNIER-LAPOSTOLLEI L. B. Smith, sp. nov.
H. confusa L. B. Smith in systema mea (North American Flora 19:84. 1938) proxima sed
laminis foliorum supra dense lepidotis, spicis elongatis laxioribusque differt.
Plant relatively small and slender; leaves few, sheaths suborbicular, ca. 2 cm. in diameter, castaneous,
densely lepidote at apex, elsewhere glabrous and lustrous, blades narrowly triangular, pungent, thick
and fleshy, to 13 cm. long, 2 cm. wide, densely and closely pale-lepidote on both sides, sinuate-serrate
with upwardly curved spines 4 mm. long; scape central glabrous, flattened, 4 mm. wide at apex; upper
scape-bracts exceeding the internodes, broadly ovate with a long linear blade; inflorescence laxly
bipinnate, glabrous; primary bracts like the upper scape-bracts, mostly much shorter than the branches;
branches divergent, short-stipitate, sublax, the staminate to 55 mm. long, the pistillate to 40 mm.;
staminate rhachis terete, less than 1 mm. in diameter, pistillate flattened at base, 2 mm. wide; floral
bracts broadly ovate, convex, about equaling the sepals, erose, white when dry; staminate pedicels
1 mm. long, pistillate 2 mm.; sepals like the floral bracts, 2 mm. long; staminate petals obovate,
rounded, about 4 mm. long, equaling the stamens; pistillate petals narrowly triangular, bearing a large
callus at base; ovary ovoid, trigonous, glabrous.
Staminate inflorescence — Hechtia marnier-lapostollei
Type in the National
Herbarium, No. 2,324,915, collected at Puerto
de la Corriente, Mexico, by
Schwartz, and cultivated in June 1960 by J. Marnier-Lapostolle.
Smithsonian Institution, Washington, D. C.
In Phytologia for
April, 1961, there appears "Notes on Bromeliaceae, XVI," by Dr. Lyman
B. Smith. In these notes he describes the following new bromeliads: a
Pitcairnia from Mexico, 2 Cottendorfias and 1 Guzmania from Venezuela, 1
Tillandsia from Peru, and 13 Puyas from Bolivia, Argentina, Peru, and Colombia.
Eleven of the new species of Puya described are the results of a preliminary
revision of the genus by Dr. Smith, in preparation of a monograph of the Bromeliaceae.
The recognizable species of Puya now number 138. It would seem that there is a
population explosion not only in the number of humans, but in the number of
bromeliads as well. (Copies of Phytologia may be obtained by sending one
dollar to H. N. Moldenke, 15 Glenbrook Ave., Yonkers 5, New York.)
Dr. Richard Oeser, of West Germany,
is one of the world's most avid collectors of Tillandsias. In the March, 1961,
of Schweizer Garden - Wohnkultur, published in Zurich, Switzerland,
he has published a most fascinating article on this genus entitled "Vom tapferen
Leben kleiner Pfanzen, die man Tillandsien nennt." Not a small part of the
attraction is the striking photos taken by Dr. Oeser and also by Walter
Richter. The full-page cover of silver Tillandsias against a black background
is especially stunning.
Vriesea × flammea — a complex hybrid containing the blood of at least
seven different species and hybrids!
ON THE ORIGIN OF A VRIESEA HYBRID
(Vriesea × van ackeri Hort.)
(The Bromeliad Society
Bulletin published on the cover page (Vol. IV, No. 3, May-June, 1954) a photo
of a Vriesea hybrid with a beautiful branched flower stalk, that Mr. Walter
Richter had sent to Mr. Mulford Foster, under the name of Vriesea × flammea
My long experience with
Bromeliads in general, and with Vrieseas in particular permits me to express
some doubt about the basis for the naming of the Vriesea represented by the
photo in question.
The true V. × flammea,
obtained by Duval from crossing of V × van geertii Duval with V. (Encholirion)
jonghei Morr., was presented at a meeting of the Société Nationale d'Horticulture
de France on December 12, 1901, but it was not described nor illustrated. Beyond
doubt, this hybrid does not correspond with the photo presented. I am all the
more confirmed in my opinion upon reading in the accompanying note, "It is
a remarkable complex hybrid containing the blood of at least seven different
species and hybrids . . . The branched characteristic probably comes from V.
rodigasiana, one of its parents." There is therefore an error; it is
evident that this paragraph does not apply to V. × flammea of Duval
which is a primary hybrid.
To what hybrid, then, does
the photo in question correspond? An examination of the spike, thick, with
bulging imbricated bracts, incurving at the top, gives evidence that
V. incurvata Gaud. or one of its derivatives: V. × van geertii Duval, or, better
perhaps V × poelmanii Hort. have largely participated in its creation.
M. Ernest De Coster, member
of the Bromeliad Society and grower of Bromeliads on a large scale in Ghent, whom I
questioned on this subject replied that the plant pictured on the cover must,
in his opinion, be V. × van ackeri Hort. He agreed at the time to seek
out the information at the source, and, aided by M. and Mme. Wery-Van Acker,
successors to M. J. Van Acker-Algoet, I obtained a fund of information,
hitherto little known, which clears up, in a certain measure, the origin of
About 1887-1888, M. L. Poelman,
father-in-law of M. J. Van Acker, bought at Duval's in Paris a hybrid
Vriesea with the authorization from him to give it his name. It was
V. × poelmanii, which came from the crossing of V. × gloriosa
Duval with V. × Van
geertii Duval. The first comes from V. barilletti Moor. fertilized
by V. incurvata Gaud. The origin of the second is not known for sure,
but it seems, from the form of the spike, that V. incurvata Gaud. was
not a stranger to its creation.
Beginning with 1899, after
the revival of the establishment of his father-in-law, M. J. Van Acker made
numerous crossings and propagations from seed. Unfortunately, his notes, which
his daughter had the kindness to send me, gave no precise indication on the
subject of the species employed. It is certain, nevertheless, that
V. × poelmanii Hort. is the original element of it. However it may be, in 1930, at the
Centennial Exposition in Ghent, he presented an important lot of Vrieseas with
branched flower stalks; to this beautiful subject he gave the name of V. × van
The birth of this hybrid is
then, in a certain measure, well established, but which is the species with the
branching stalk that was associated with V. × poelmanii? I say
intentionally "branched inflorescence" for I know of no example of the
crossing of two species with single stalk which gave directly one that was
branched. This opinion is shared by M. L. Dutrie (see Bull. Hort. April 1st, 1947, page
I rule out, directly, V. philippo-coburgii Wawra, a very rare species,
and seldom floriferous, and the large species: V,
hieroglyphica Moor., V. tessellata Moor., V. glazioviana Lem.
(V. reginae Beer) which, at that time, interested few of the
horticulturists practising hybridization. I do not believe that one can invoke
the participation of V. saundersii Morr., it presents the peculiarity of
a strongly drooping floral stem and it transmits this fault to its descendants:
V. × kitteliana Wittm. (V. barilletii × V. saundersii) etc.
One can admit V. rodigasiana Morr. with branched flower stem with short,
spaced bracts on a slender,
upright stalk, and also its off-spring: V. × vigeri Duval already
cultivated at that time and which the notes of M. J. Van Acker point out as
having been utilized in some hybridizations.
To these names one should add
that of V. procera Mart. (V. gracilis Gaud.) introduced in 1886.
I do not know this species, not widely distributed, but M. L. Dutrie in his
report on the Bromeliacea (Bull. Hort., June 1st, 1947,
page 117) points out a V. procera bicolor Hort. which he believes to be
the off-spring of V. × kitteliana × V. brachystachys major.
To take up again the
possibility of an intervention, whether it be from V. rodigasiana Morr. or
from V. vigeri Duval, it must be admitted that only the branching
characteristic has acted and it is V. incurvata Morr. frankly dominant,
that has imposed the characteristic form upon its spike. It is noted that,
about 1910, M. J. Van Acker mentioned V. × vigeri but said nothing of V.
rodigasiana. V. × vigeri is an elegant little plant created by Duval about
1900 by the crossing of V. rodigasiana by V. × cardinalis Duv.
(V. carinata × Krameri); it has a slender upright flower stem with
branched inflorescence having spaced cardinal-red bracts.
It is also certain that as a
result of the seedlings and crossings resulting from the intelligent selection
of the most beautiful specimens of V. × van ackeri (also known under the
name of V. poelmanii (branched)) there has been a great improvement in
its coloration, in its form and in its inflorescence: stalk more branched,
spike larger and broader, well-filled, without spaces between the bracts.
Besides V. × van ackeri Hort.
there originated at Ghent, and at about the same time, another Vriesia hybrid,
cultivated for some time at Ghent on a large scale, under the improper name of
V. × viminalis-rex or V. viminalis erecta.
What is the plant cultivated
under this name, about 1910, in Ghent? I do not know. I doubt strongly that the
true V. viminalis Morr. had anything to do with its creation. This species, so seldom
cultivated because so slightly ornamental, is recognized by its single, narrow,
fusiform spike with green bracts at the top of a long, slender stalk, often
bent. (Belg. Hort. 1878, pl. color, page 257.) This name appeared for the first
time in the notes of M. J. Van Acker in 1920; One reads there, V. viminalis comes
from crossing of V. × van geertii, strong plant, single spike, thin and
long. Has been fertilized by different varieties. I have obtained some
remarkable specimens, among which, in 1928, there was a V. × viminalis (branched),
a very strong plant, endowed with a remarkable spike". Much later, in the
years 1933 to 1937, M. J. Van Acker announced that he had made a number of
crossings, notably between V. × viminalis (branched) and V. × rex
(V. morreno-brilletti × cardinalis), between V. × viminalis-rex and
V. × poelmannii (branched) (V. van ackeri, etc.) In 1937 he
produced V. × vigeri Duval.
There resulted from all these
crossings and others of the same kind, performed by various horticulturists of Ghent, the two
groups of branched Vrieseas originated there. Very similar to one another,
having many parents in common, they differed among themselves in such details
as only specialists could detect. In spite of the fact that V. × van ackerii
is the oldest, the horticulturist of Ghent still use the name of V. × viminalis-rex to
designate all these branched Vrieseas.
According to M. Ernest De Coster,
the flower stalk of V. × van ackerii is well branched; the spikes better
filled and without spacing between the bracts, showing the dominant, persistent
action of V. incurvata. The spikes are noticeably broader and larger
than those of V. × viminalis-rex among which the influence of V. × rex
and its forebears seems to remain deep-rooted. The plants are also more
uniform, their characteristics perpetuate themselves more faithfully seed.
Among V. × viminalis-rex, one finds in the seedlings several different
types, with the leaves more pointed, and less broad, with the spikes narrower,
and, at times, even the flowers plainly isolated from their neighbors, showing
thus an atavistic return to certain of its ancestors: V. carinata Wawra (V.
brachystachys Morr.) etc.
These two hybrids, which,
practically, are only one, are then the complex hybrids of which we know the
relationship. It remains, however, to determine with certainty the species
which has supplied the branched characteristic. For my part, I should be
pleased to know the origin of the plant known under the name of V. viminalis.
I hope that these blanks can
be filled in. I shall receive with gratitude all information sent in.
Translated by Frank H. Overton, 1348 Winchester Ave., Glendale, Calif.
IN THE MAIL BAG...
"To reply to Mrs.
McLaughlin's article in the last issue, let me attempt to answer one question.
'What was the quality and success of each variety when used as a house plant?
What varieties succeed best?'
"Dogmatically I can answer Neoregelia
marmorata ×. I have 3 eight-inch pots of these plants in a 24-inch
architectural pottery planter. Each pot has about 3 plants in it, giving the
entire planter a leaf spread of about 52 inches. The planter is in a northeast
window; the blinds are kept open during the day all year. I water cups and
basal area once a week throughout the year and feed (Rapid-Gro or cottonseed
meal, one tablespoon a gallon of water) every other week throughout the year.
"Mature suckers are
flowering, and the only distinction from the mother plant is a rangier leaf
structure. The flower cup is as round as that of the mother plant. The tips of
all plants are really fingernails and show up deeply when I test wash. In
spring and summer I take the plants outside and wash and soak them well with a
hose. (Our water is quite limey.) I intend not to separate the suckers but will
continue these plants as a mass display. I do not intend to destroy the
original plants until they become too ugly to keep. I would estimate that these
mother plants are three or four years old. The blooming cycle is early to late
spring, with individual flowers lasting approximately three to four weeks.
"I hope that this has
been an answer to 'a very elementary question.' Believe me, Mrs. McLaughlin,
all our questions are elementary, for we amateurs never get out of
kindergarten. But what fun!"
Mike Ingrisano, 4201 Rupert Street, McLean, Virginia
(United Press International Newspicture)
BROMELIAD EXHIBIT AT THE NEW YORK
INTERNATIONAL FLOWER SHOW
Our congratulations go to Mr.
Edward L. Sard, who won a special prize for his educational exhibit of bromeliads
at the International Flower Show held in New
York City last March. So far as we have
been able to determine, this is the largest display of bromeliads entered by an
amateur in this show. The exhibit consisted of forty bromeliads—all different—and
was divided into two sections: those plants which are easy to grow in the
living room and those which do better under greenhouse culture. The display
consisted of five Aechmeas, one Ananas, three Billbergias, seven Cryptanthus,
one Dyckia, four Nidulariums, one Neoregelia, one Quesnelia, one Hohenbergia,
nine Vrieseas, four Tillandsias, and two Guzmanias.
Mr. Sard's plants came from
various sources: Belgium, Colombia, Holland, Central
America, California, and Florida. Mr. Sard
stated that most people who saw his exhibit found bromeliads a brand new type
of plant. As might be expected, some of the remarks, were amusing, especially
that of a person who pointed at Tillandsia cyanea and said, "Oh,
look at the little pineapple!"
THE NIZANDA "ROCK GARDENS" OF OAXACA, MEXICO
Bromeliad Associates of a Succulent Flora
A dwarf Tillandsia on the cereus Neodawsonia mizandensis
A view of the "Gardens", showing an abundance of the coral-red Hechtia meziana
One of my favorite plant
habitats is that on a small limestone hill, some five hundred feet above sea
level, in the Isthmus of Tehuantepee—a "rock garden" that owes
nothing to man!
The succulent and epiphytic
flora of this little hill is a sample of that of other areas in southern Mexico, in
that it contains undescribed, or poorly known, species. During the past twenty years,
these "Rock gardens" have become the type locality of an orchid, a
cactus, an agave, and of an anthurium. In addition, mammillaria, a peniocereus,
an agave, an echeveria, and a pilea growing there are probably still
The bromeliads of the
"gardens" have remained neglected. Of the six species illustrated
here, I can identify only three with reasonable accuracy. However, I still hope
to get herbarium material to our authority, Lyman B. Smith, for identification.
Oaxaca, Oax., Mexico.
GROWING BROMELIADS IN A NORTHERN GARDEN
Rudolph E. Leide
A Tree Garden on a Terrace.
Two articles by Racine Foster
that appeared in the Bromeliad Society Bulletin, Vol. V, No. 4,
"Bromeliads Can Make a Tree Garden" and "Feature in the Tree
Garden" made this writer wonder if a "tree garden" was practical
and possible in colder climates like that of the Chicago area in northern
After several seasons of
experimenting, he now believes that though it may not be possible to win in an
outdoor competition with Florida or California, tree gardening with bromeliads in northern gardens
is definitely possible. The technique described here has been found to be
simple and practical. It is presented in the hope that it will stimulate other
members to give it a try.
The principal innovation in
preparing bromeliads for an outdoor tree garden consists of (1) eliminating the
flower pot, (2) wrapping the roots with an inch layer of dampened sphagnum
moss, (3) tying the moss wrapped roots with string into a reasonably tight
ball. Wire is used to fasten the plants securely at the chosen position. The
outdoor living area offers some interesting possibilities for bromeliads, as a
terrace garden, as a wall garden, as a tree garden, and other special
occasions, providing opportunity for creative expression.
When the cold winds begins to
blow bromeliads take their place indoors—perhaps in the sun room, or at the
living room window on a plastic frame as an attractive indoor bromeliad garden.
Whether used in planters, as specimen plants, or to be a part of an indoor
bromeliad tree, bromeliads spread a cheery atmosphere and are a source of
pleasure throughout the winter.
21763 South Main Street Matteson, Illinois
Although he has only been
keenly interested in bromeliads for a few years, Ralph W. Davis is a
horticulturist of long standing, who has been working with many families and
genera of tropical plants for over thirty years. Dr. B. Frank Brown, of Indialantic, Florida, has
recently (1960) published a book called Florida's Beautiful Crotons, on
which he worked for seven years. The book is dedicated to Ralph W. Davis in the
following words: "One of the world's most successful collectors and
hybridizers of fine crotons, Mr. Davis is affectionately known to
horticulturists and plant collectors as Dr. Davis." Later in the
book, in a chapter devoted to historical data, he says, "The world's best
private collection of new hybrid crotons is undoubtedly that of Mr. Ralph Davis
of North Miami Beach, Florida. Mr. Davis has developed a number of excellent
varieties which he, out of modesty, consistently refuses to name. One group of
these became well known in the trade at Davis, #1, Davis #2, Davis #3, etc.