Years ago, I’ve managed to collect five Anthurium plants of the small variety. They yield pink with red/yellow spike, white with red spike,white with red/yellow, lavender and red flowers. As miniatures, the maximum size of their spathe is under 3 inches and the stem length is about 3-7 inches long.
Like the regular varieties, my miniature Anthuriums like a shady spot and sufficient water in the morning. However, I’ve managed to kill four of them despite years of experience with planting Anthuriums. How? Well…for two reasons.
First, due to neglect. I’m preoccupied with my orchids and other favorite plant of the month that I failed to give the attention they needed. Neglect is always the primary way to kill a plant.
Second, their potting medium is wrong. Initially, I’ve potted these miniature plants with large chunks of coconut husks. It resulted with the death of the Anthurium with lavender flowers. So, I re-potted them using the black tree-fern as potting medium (commonly called anutong in Bisaya.) I regretted that decision when I discovered three of my four miniature plants died one after another. Again, I re-potted the last miniature Anthurium with sphagnum moss. It was a success for the plant thrive well.
Now, I know better what to do with my recently acquired miniature Anthurium plants.
It’s not yet Christmas but since this plant started blooming the other day, I thought to give my Rhipsalis teres an attention. This plant is also known as the Mistletoe cactus or Wickerwork cactus. My friend Mrs.Tolero, a jet-setter and a plant collector, gave me this epiphyte as a present from her travels sometime in year 2000. She told me that this plant came from South America.
I knew so little about this plant and for years I didn’t think much of it. I thought it was just an air plant for it doesn’t resemble a normal cactus. It has no spines, just a few bristles here and there.
Its stems are slender, they’re about 0.5 cm in diameter. I also observed that the length of each stems vary but they’re commonly connected together in long joints. The young stems are short about 2 cm, angular and have bristles. The old stems, on the other hand, are long, rounded and smooth. Moreover, the branches are in whorls and they grow downwards, hence, they are usually potted in a hanging basket.
Anyway, what I like about this plant is its fruits; they’re like little round white pearls which decorate the plant. Then, there’s its less than 1 cm wide yellow flowers blooming on either the tip or on the side of the stems. I guess the flowers of my Rhipsalis is somewhat smaller than expected; I’ve been informed that the normal size of its flowers is 2.5cm wide.
As per advise of my friend on how to care for Rhipsalis, I put this plant in a shady area where the cactus could avoid exposure from direct sunlight. I also watered it regularly during months of hot season. I cut down its ration of water during the rainy season though.
Due to ignorance, I’ve used chunks of coconut husks as potting medium on this for plant for years. Just recently, I’ve learned that Rhipsalis requires soil rich in humus. So I did the logical thing, I re-potted it with sandy-loam soil. Hopefully, I’ll see bigger flowers the next time it blooms.