Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Is it? Or isn’t it?


Someone out there can help me, I’m sure of it. I bought this Epiphyllum on December 23rd, it’s my first. I’ll acknowledge right up front that I probably wouldn’t have bought it if not for the brilliant red appendage, it called out to me. I thought it might be the beginnings of flower. Or not.

This is what it was looking like on January 9th...
The plant was so top heavy when I bought it that I broke off this paddle and stuck it in the soil next to the mother plant hoping it would root, and it appears to have done so. It also seems to be growing something out of its tip…
As the weeks have gone by the appendage looks less and less like a flower and more like it will be another paddle/segment/leaf. These photos taken on February 4th...
It’s loosing its red color and the tip is starting to flatten. Although the base is still red...
The growth at the end of the short leaf is changing as well.
So what’s the verdict on the red appendage? Flower or no flower?

27 comments:

  1. My guess is no flower. If nothing else, the plant is awfully small to be blooming already.

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    1. And to think even as I was writing this post I was thinking, well obviously it's going to be a flower just look at it!

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  2. My intuition is "no flower", just because to me it looks like its growing into a paddle.

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  3. Epiphyllum new growth can often fake out beginners, but the hairy bristles are the give away that this is not a flower bud. Also, in general, Epiphyllums are almost always summer blooming. You'll need to feed them regularly to push them into bloom; at least in my experience, if you don't fertilize them, they don't do very much at all. The reddish tints are the plant's protection against intense UV light damaging the fresh growth.

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    1. Truth be told the hairy bristles did concern me, it seemed unlikely that the flower would have hairs like the paddles. I had no idea about the reddish tint, thank you!

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  4. Replies
    1. Too spiny but not spiky enough?

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    2. Ha ha...I must have had a lapse in brain waves. Spiny, spiky..."it's all good"!

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  5. Nope. Here the buds appear in late March and look like flowers from the start, blooming about a month later. It may take several years for yours. They are not plants in a hurry and it seems too small to be blooming size.

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  6. Not a flower -- new growth on these things is often red tinged.

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    1. Everyone but me knows this is seems!

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  7. I think orchid cacti take a while to settle in before they bloom. I have one from Logee's, a hybrid, that sat in the pot for two years doing nothing. Until this winter. Now paddles are bustin' out all over. What is that they used to say about ivy? That it "Sleeps, then creeps, then leaps".
    That is what I think orchid cacti do-

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    1. So maybe this is the year yours blooms too!

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  8. I'm guessing it's a new paddle. I've had the same learning curve with new orchid growth.

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    1. If all the new paddles start out like this then I love this plant even more!

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  9. The flowers start from those little blips on each curve of the paddle. Unlike some of the commenters above, mine is in bloom almost continually (anywhere from one to five blooms at any given time). It moves in and out of the house along with all of the succulents, and I use that Schultz liquid fertilizer for succ's & cacti with every watering.

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    1. Fertilizing...I really should start doing that. All of my more succulents are probably starving.

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  10. I have a different Epiphyllum species (oxypetalum) so not so sure how it will relate to yours but my flowers are recognizable as such from the start. Maybe your appendages will turn into paddles?

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    1. "Appendages to Paddles"...sounds like a good book title doesn't it?

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  11. I push the envelope with mine; usually placing it up against a west wall of the house with eave cover keeps it alive, but I only get blooms in the years when we don't get into the 20's. Mine don't bloom til May, if at all.

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    1. Ah to be able to have years where we don't get into the 20's...

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  12. What a coincidence! I bought an epiphyllum last month at Annie's Annuals, and mine has two of these new growths as well. I assumed they were new stems, and it seems that they are. The main stem is so heavy, it won't stand up.

    Gerhard
    :: Bamboo and More ::

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    1. I don't look forward to it's awkward floppy stage, but I suppose it's going to happen just the same.

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  13. Where did you buy the epiphyllum? I'm traveling to Santa Barbara on February 1st to the 3rd. I'm looking for a nursery where I can buy epiphyllum cuttings or rooted plants. If you or anyone can point me a name direction I would be very appreciative.

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  14. I bought it here in Portland, OR, at Portland Nursery on Division St...

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