We have no Autumn or Fall Season here in the Philippines…but I’m glad that this fragile-looking blooming rose gets some attention from me and the bees last September 23.
God pours life into death and death into life without a drop being spilled. ~Author Unknown
It’s Typhoon MINA that’s been causing all those rain, wind, and brownouts here in my hometown for the past days… and Lanao del Norte is just at its outskirts! My cacti suffered the most — weeds grew in every pot and cacti condition ranges from okay to rotting to dead. I even found an “empty shell” of a dwarf cactus while weeding its pot…
…but not all is bad news on cacti. As they say, a garden is always on the business of life and death; if a plant died, seedlings would sprout… and sprout they did. I’ve propagated some Thelocactus seeds early this month and look how they’re (Thelocactus seedlings) starting their new life.
Also, two of my orchids bloomed again… The red-mottled golden flowers of the Vanda hybrid cheered me up ( this orchid arrived in bloom here in my garden last February 2011)… And so is the orange blooms of my Ascocenda.
Some plants also bloomed to show that they’re faring well in this current weather condition. So overall, I’m still glad while waiting for the this wet season to pass.
The wet season brings out nice blooms to my Anthuriums. Most of my friends think that the thick and waxy heart-shaped colorful spathes are the flowers. (Well, I guess that’s the common misconceptions about these tropical plants.) The spathes are just modified leaves developed by these plant to attract and fool the humans. The actual flowers are really on the spadix — about a hundred or more minute blossoms cover the spadix. Anyway, here are some photos of my Anthurium‘s inflorescence. Enjoy!
The Hibiscus plants are locally known throughout the Philippines as the Gumamela.
Though this plant has short-lived but continuing blooms, the scent-less Gumamela is one of the most widely cultivated of flowers here in my hometown.
Presently, I have eleven shrubs of Hibiscus rosa-sinensis along my fence.
Eight of my Gumamela shrubs are potted while three of them are planted on the ground. Moreover, nine of these flowering shrubs are hosts to some of my Dendrobium orchids.
These plants bloom throughout the year for I placed them in the area of my garden where they get a few hours of direct sun every day. I’ve noticed that the bloom life of these flowers are about 2-3 days, with a succession of blooms that last for months.
More often, my Hibiscus plants produce gorgeous flowers in vibrant color in red, white, pink, yellow, peach, orange and purple. So for years, I’ve enjoyed their ruffled and trumpet-shaped blooms.
To get more blooms, the rule of the thumb is pinch and prune. Since I don’t want a huge shrub in my garden, I prune my Gumamelas when necessary. Pinching their growing tips also helps them to branch out. I’ve planted the cuttings in black bags filled with sandy-loam soil.
Moreover, these plant are not only ornamental but medicinal as well. Hibiscus rosa-sinensis is one of the plants listed on Philippine herbs. http://www.stuartxchange.org/Gumamela.html
What I liked about this epiphyte, Tillandsia funckiana, is it doesn’t need soil to survive. Its essentials are the following: (1) water and nutrients which are absorbed through the leaves, (2) sunlight, and (3) a driftwood for the plant roots to cling to.
I remembered that when I first saw this plant at a garden show in the mid 1990’s; a small offset had a price tag of P150.00 that time. It’s pricey for such a small plant. nevertheless, I bought one out of curiosity. Despite of my ignorance, the single offset multiplied and yielded bright orange flowers blooming at the tip of each stem.