Six on Saturday #62 (January 2, 2021)

flowers of Macleania sp. aff. smithiana
Macleania sp. aff smithiana

2021 has started cloudy and damp, and since we have already had several hard freezes this winter, there isn’t much that’s growing outside apart from a some cold-weather greens in the vegetable garden. This Six on Saturday is, therefore, a grab bag of tropical plants from my greenhouse.

1. Paphiopedilum purpuratum

Paphiopedilum purpuratum flower

Paphiopedilum purpuratum is a small slipper orchid native to Hong Kong and adjacent mainland China. According to the IUCN Red List, it is critically endangered, with fewer than 250 individual plants surviving in the wild. Despite its rarity in the wild, it is well established in cultivation, and artificially propagated seedlings like this one are relatively inexpensive, making it even sadder that the wild plants are still collected for unscrupulous horticulturalists.

2. Hippeastrum puniceum ‘Ibitipoca’

flower of Hippeastrum puniceum

Ibitipoca is a locality in Minas Gerais state, presumably where this clone of H. puniceum was originally collected.

3. Burbidgea schizocheila (golden brush ginger)

flowering plant of Burbidgea schizocheila

This very attractive dwarf ginger, endemic to Borneo, was once difficult to find in cultivation, but it is now being mass produced and shows up at local garden centers. I keep it outside in the summer, and it seems to flower mostly in winter without a prolonged dormant period.

4. Cavendishia capitulata (Huntington Botanical Gardens #92102)

flowering branches of Cavendishia capitulata

Flowering for the first time after growing for five years in my greenhouse, this pretty little shrub is an epiphytic member of the blueberry family (Ericaceae) from Costa Rica, Panama, and northern Colombia. Like the Macleania species that I have previously discussed, its flowers are pollinated by hummingbirds. I really love the fantastic shapes and colors of the neotropical Ericaceae, and I hope that the Cavendishia will prove to be as floriferous as the Macleania, which flowers almost nonstop now that it has reached a decent size (see photo at top of this page).

5. Nepenthes tobaica

Nepenthes tobaica pitcher

See Six on Saturday #12 for more information about Nepenthes pitcher plants. N. tobaica is a smallish species endemic to the region around Lake Toba on the island of Sumatra. My plant is still fairly young and only recently started producing fully mature pitchers.

6. Nepenthes rafflesiana

Nepenthes rafflesiana lower pitcher

N. rafflesiana is a much larger species with a wider native range encompassing Borneo, Sumatra, Singapore, and penisular Malaysia. Compared to the clone that I previously photographed (see picture 5), this seed-grown plant has more squat lower pitchers, and I prefer its more evenly distributed red speckling and dark red petioles.

The Propagator is the host of Six on Saturday. Head over there to see his Six for this week and find links to the blogs of other participants.

20 thoughts on “Six on Saturday #62 (January 2, 2021)

  1. A demonstration of superb exotic and tropical plants from your greenhouse… The photos are always amazing. What did you put as insulation in the lower part, under the bubble plastic? (seen pictures 2 and 3) – and you have a heater, right ? ( temperature around 10° or 12°C? )

    Liked by 1 person

    1. The lower part of the greenhouse and the north wall have wooden siding on the outside, rigid foam insulation in the middle, and Reflectix on the inside. Reflectix is bubble plastic sandwiched between two layers of reflective foil. It reflects light inside the greenhouse and also helps to insulate.

      I have an LP gas heater with thermostat set to 15 C.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Thanks for your explanations. I have so many exotics plants this year that I had to insulate the greenhouse this year with plastic bubble like you but in the lower part and I didn’t put an additional insulation. I could predict something like that in the future to keep them alive in case of hard frost

        Liked by 1 person

  2. What interesting plants you have in your greenhouse. I find the Golden Brush Ginger especially attractive and vibrant. The red stems set off the flowers very nicely, and there are a lot of flowering stems on one plant (am assuming it’s just one plant).

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Your diet for New Year is healthier than my husband’s traditional Steak pie followed by Cloutie Dumpling …….he is Scottish! Your glasshouse has very exotic plants, you saw the total of mine, overwintering pelargoniums and Fred’s Sweet pea shoots. Your Six-on-Saturday is a lovely splash of colour, especially at this time of year.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yes, I do love the greenhouse when it is so gloomy outside.

      Steak pie sounds pretty good to me, and the dumpling doesn’t seem all that different than a good Christmas pudding. I assume the pork and sauerkraut is German—my wife’s family came from Switzerland many generations ago.


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