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lorax
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Location: Ecuador, USDA Zone 13, at 10,000' of altitude

1. Cork on PVC pipe is what my good friend Steve Lucas over at the [url=https://www.exoticrainforest.com]Exotic Rainforest[/url] uses for his extensive bromeliad collection. I generally don't argue with his techniques, since he's doing all this in Arkansas and enjoys tremendous success. Check out some of his atrium photos - if you didn't know that his "logs" are made this way, you'd think they were real branches. :()

2. Once the bromeliads are established, it won't look like a PVC pipe wrapped in cork. However, if it bothers you, you can glue some of the orchid bark ontop of the cork. "Bark-looking" environment things are often plastic, and since what you're doing with the cork is providing a surface similar in texture and penetrative properties to actual bark, "bark-looking" isn't going to cut it - what will the roots hang on to there?

3. I'd move it onto the pipe. The sooner you start establishing your colony on there, the faster it will cease to look like a pipe covered in cork. Definitely rinse the soil off the base gently before replanting.

4. It has to do with the environmental adaptations of the different species. In North America, you don't have the wide range of habitats for broms to observe something like this; Florida and parts of the Gulf states are the only place that bromeliads grow naturally in the US. However, in the true tropics, and especially in Ecuador, there are about 20 distinct climate zones, all of which have bromeliads that are specially adapted to live there. The Bromeliaceae is a reasonably large family in the tropics, and there's a lot of diversity within it.

Vriesea are only found in fairly hot, humid forests, high up in the canopy of very tall trees, where they grow as epiphytes (hence my knowledge that they're bark dwellers and like to be humid). Below are Vriesea in the middle-amazon, 300 feet up in the canopy of a Kapok tree.
[img]https://i256.photobucket.com/albums/hh196/HabloPorArboles/DSCN7988.jpg[/img]
Tillandsia, on the other hand, are adapted to some of the harshest conditions the tropics have to offer - many species grow in deserts, and often at very high altitudes. These are often found on stone because that's the first place that water collects when the temperature of the day changes, or when there's fog or the area is inside cloud. Tillies are also found in our cold and permanently-clouded forests, where most other bromeliads would perish. Below is a blooming Tillandsia in the Imbabura highland desert, in Ecuador's north.
[img]https://i256.photobucket.com/albums/hh196/HabloPorArboles/DSCN8719.jpg[/img]
However, taking the cake for the toughest bromeliads are Puya, which are semi-carnivorous and grow in extreme altitudes and the driest of the deserts (the Atacama), where they are generally the largest plants. Below is a Puya cultivated in Quito, which, at 2,850 m above sea level (about 10,000 feet) is the lowest altitude where it will survive. I've seen these right up around the snowline (5,000 meters).
[img]https://i256.photobucket.com/albums/hh196/HabloPorArboles/DSCN7495.jpg[/img]

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BewilderedGreenyO.o
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Thanx for the info Again Lorax! *gasp* I'm so obsessed with Bromeliads! Well... plants in general for that matter... when will I ever draw the line lol
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BewilderedGreenyO.o
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Hi! I'm back again! ;p I took my pup today from the soil and put it on a cork log.. I had some troubles getting it to stay on... the plant hadn't formed roots yet ... Is that unusual?

I couldn't find any super glue and read that hot glue would work the same so I did it... the problem is that when I glued it on it wouldn't stay but I finally made it stay.. (sorta) ... :( The hot glue wasn't sticking to the plant very well. So I left and when I came home my Dad had decided to tamper with it and said that it had fallen off... :shock: He then continued to say that he got it to stay on :eek:

I quickly looked at the plant and he has the whole bottom of the plant submerged in hot glue. I know he was totally just trying to help but I asked him where the roots would come from lol! He thought they came out higher on the base... then continued to say that if they come out on the bottom that maybe they will grow through the hot glue...well at least the plant wont be falling off anymore lol *sigh* Is this pup doomed? :cry: Here are photos of it from different angles...
[img]https://i618.photobucket.com/albums/tt261/NySnap/Plants/Bromelaid/P8040626.jpg[/img]

[img]https://i618.photobucket.com/albums/tt261/NySnap/Plants/Bromelaid/P8040627.jpg[/img]

[img]https://i618.photobucket.com/albums/tt261/NySnap/Plants/Bromelaid/P8040630.jpg[/img]
Confusion at its Finest :D
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lorax
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Location: Ecuador, USDA Zone 13, at 10,000' of altitude

You're not doomed - you'll get root formation at the leaf nodes above the hot glue puddle.

Lookin' good - now you just need umpteen-squidly-dozen more! :twisted:

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BewilderedGreenyO.o
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Yay! I'm so glad to hear that my little Bromeliad Pup has hope! I noticed the other day that my Bromelaid mom has 4 more pups on the way :) Yay!

Oh and guess what? :D I just ordered a Puya berteroniana from Ebay :wink: Tis' so beautiful!! The plant I purchased is just a youngish one in a 4 inch pot. And later after purchasing I found out that it could take up to 8 years to bloom... -wall- hehe oh well! It'll just be great to know that I own one I think :) Here are some pics of it in bloom :)

[img]https://strangewonderfulthings.com/BluePuya4898.jpg[/img]

[img]https://strangewonderfulthings.com/BluePuya4897.jpg[/img]

one thing I'm not sure about though is how to determine what variety of it that I purchased since I've read that there is one that is more turquoise then there is one that is more blue... and also another species that looks similar but is less impressive.

Here is the link to the ebay plant I purchased[url]https://cgi.ebay.com/Puya-berteroniana-CHAGUAL-Chile-Rare-PLANT-/160460250393?cmd=ViewItem&pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item255c2d1d19#ht_1094wt_930[/url] ... If you read the description, It says all plants are guaranteed to be true to species and variety so if this is true then the plant should be Puya berteroniana either variety terqoise or blue and not the Puya alpestris. But how can I tell the difference between the three without it blooming?
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lorax
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Location: Ecuador, USDA Zone 13, at 10,000' of altitude

Well, since both are native here in South America, and I've got personal experience with both, I can give you a couple of hints - there are minute differences in the foliage between P. alpestris and P. berteroniana - the former has very even spacing of the thorns along the edges of each leaf, and the latter seems more random, with more thorns but occasional groups of them.

There are also a few differences in the inflorescence, which you won't know about until the brom produces one - the main one is that the unopened buds of P. berteroniana are more silvery, and P. alpestris more green. However, take heart! Even if you do get P. alpestris you're still going to get those stunning dark turquoise flowers - it's just that on P. alpestris the deep turquoise tends more towards greenish while on the darker variety of P. berteroniana the deep turquoise tends more towards bluish.

Unfortunately, there's no way to tell whether you're growing the blue or dark turquoise form of P. berteroniana until you actually see the flowers - personally, though, I wouldn't worry because both forms are stunningly beautiful, especially if your plant decides to bloom in the wintertime.

You can help the plant by making its soil fairly alkaline rather than acid - this seems to affect the bloom colour, making it darker and pushing it further towards the blue tones.

Oh, and goes kinda without saying - Puya are true terrestrial bromeliads - you should be planting this one in actual soil. :()

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BewilderedGreenyO.o
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Thanks Lorax! :D :D :D I love the rare and unusual plants I just can't get enough of them! I just got my Jade vine in the mail today, I think I'm in love and it hasn't even gotten its blooms on it yet ;p

The reason I was curious about the differences between them was basically just so that I knew if I had an extremely rare form or a more common form. (Bragging rights) ROFL Plus to make sure I wasn't getting scammed by the ebay seller with false advertising of the wrong species being sold. Either way I know each type is gorgeous ... I just tend to sway towards the rarest ones :D
Confusion at its Finest :D
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BewilderedGreenyO.o
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So I just got a Puya berteroniana in the mail from a seller on Ebay and its so small!! :shock: I wasn't expecting it to be so small lol (Ebay sellers never cease to amaze me) Nevertheless I do have another one on the way from a different seller that looks much larger then this one. Anyway! I am just gunna roll with the punches and keep the lil' one. I couldn't possibly send it back (already attached lol) Here are some photos of this one that Imma properly name "Lil'bit"

Photos of My First Puya berteroniana "Lil'Bit"
[img]https://i618.photobucket.com/albums/tt261/NySnap/Plants/Bromelaid/P8110639.jpg[/img]

[img]https://i618.photobucket.com/albums/tt261/NySnap/Plants/Bromelaid/P8110642.jpg[/img]

[img]https://i618.photobucket.com/albums/tt261/NySnap/Plants/Bromelaid/P8110643.jpg[/img]

This plant is so small it honestly just looks like a pup from a mom prematurely lol Poor lil' thing :)

Anyhow was just wondering if anyone can tell from these photos if it is for sure a Puya berteroniana or if it is actually a Puya alpestris. I am just curious but will love it just the same either way :) I want to be able to label it correctly in my garden :) Hope you all enjoy the photos of my newest addition as much as I do :D
Confusion at its Finest :D
I'm rooting for you!

*USDA Zone 8b :: Sunset Zone ?*
https://bewilderedgreeny.weebly.com/

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lorax
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Joined: Mon Jul 12, 2010 9:48 pm
Location: Ecuador, USDA Zone 13, at 10,000' of altitude

It's healthy, as far as Puya pups go - make sure you keep it in part shade until it bigs up a bit. I'd say, from looking at it, it's P. berteroniana. Confirmation, of course, will come when it blooms, several years or decades down the road. :()

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