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Beringin Pencekik – Ficus watkinsiana

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ficus-watkinsiana

Semuanya bermula pada sebuah biji beringin jenis Ficus watkinsiana yang disebarkan oleh kotoran burung. Biji yang tidak tercerna ini jatuh pada lekukan dahan sebuah pohon besar di hutan yang kemudian mulai tumbuh. Sedikit demi sedikit beringin ini mulai tumbuh batang dan daunnya. Namun yang jauh lebih cepat tumbuh adalah akarnya. Akar-akar ini menumbuhkan banyak cabang dan semuanya tumbuh menempel pada batang pohon yang ditumpanginya dan menjulur kebawah kearah tanah. Yang sudah menyentuh permukaan tanah akan menanamkan diri untuk bisa menghisap air dan nutrisi tanah hutan yang lembab dan subur.

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Kaempferia galanga / Kencur – Late Growing

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The cooler than average Spring time this year had made the Kaempferia galanga (Kencur plant) grow much later. Last year it started to grow new leaves in early November, but this year it is just growing new shoots now by the end of December. The sudden hot and humid days recently had made it grow like crazy with more new growths than before. Hopefully that next autumn will be warm enough to make the rhizome mature before the plant lost foliage for winter time. They say that it will take around 7 months for the rhizome to mature.

kaempferia-galanga-kencur-plant-december-30-2016kaempferia-galanga-december-30-2016

Begonia rex – Tiny Flowers

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begonia-rex-small-pink-flowert-december-2016

Rex Begonias are planted mainly for the pretty and colourful foliage rather than their small insignificant flowers. The leaves are big with all sorts of patterns and colours that look like they are painted on. This tropical plant which is also known as Painted-leaf Begonia will be happy to be grown indoor near a brightly lit window here in Melbourne. It is also suitable to grow inside a terrarium. Read more

Garden Early Summer 2016

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I really enjoyed much cooler weather during last Spring. Up until now in the early Summer, we are still having this pleasant temperature, but it is not so good for some tropical plants like for examples the Kencur Galangal (Kaempferia galanga) and the Arabian Jasmine (Melati). The Galangal plant has only sent off a tiny new shoot so far and the Arabian Jasmine looks scraggly and very few flower buds. Hopefully the temperatures will get warmer to their advantage.

So much to do in the garden, the weeds are growing like crazy. I still have many plants to trim to look tidy for the Christmas time. Lawn needs mowing, but I will do it some time next week, depending on the weather.

The Gardenias in the back of the house are having many large blooms and the sweet fragrance fills the air. Many plants are still in full bloom and these are some of them:

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Anthurium- Six Years Later

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anthurium-creamy-yellow-with-red-spots

The creamy colour Anthurium (Flamingo Flower) with red specks is giving us a big surprise. The last time it flowered was 6 years ago (https://kiyanti2008.wordpress.com/2010/06/28/winter-garden-2010/). Now it is flowering again and the leaves also look green and healthy. We used to have another miniature red which was a complete goner. I admit that I had neglected this plant and it badly suffered from sunburn. For many years it was in a very poor condition and several times I had almost thrown it away for good. It is proven that Anthuriums are tough and the flowers are quite nice and long lasting.

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Psychopsis papilio in Flower

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Back in March this year, the ‘not doing so well’ Psychopsis orchid started to grow what I thought a keiki on the old flower stem. It was not a keiki after all, but it is a flower bud. Today it has started to grow bigger and I can see the spots.

The miserable looking orchid plant has only two leaves left. Lately they started to grow bigger, thicker and greener. The weird looking bulbs kind of small, rounded and flat. Recently I found out that this orchid is sequential, which means that flowers keep on growing on the same old stem for many years one after another.

When I bought it, there were three stems and only one with flower. I can’t seem to remember what have happened with the other two flowerless stems. More than likely that I cut them off. Actually the seller in the market told me not to cut the stems as they can sometimes grow more flowers, but I cut them and I can’t remember why. Now it is only one left and I cut the tip earlier this year as it had gone black. Oh well, it was not a keiki but I am having a flower spike and I cannot complain anymore.

Psychopsis papilio in February this year: ‘Not a Keiki’

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Nopalxochia phyllanthoides

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From all our orchid cacti, this one is my favourite. The flowers are small but prolific and they look very pretty even when still in bud form. The tiny buds will slowly develop into very attractive half opened buds, though they are still not fully developed. the soft pink colour make them look very beautiful to look at. Then after many weeks, the cute soft pink buds will eventually open into fully mature blooms.

Pretty flower buds:

Compared to the other orchids cacti, Nopalxochia  phyllanthoides have long lasting blooms. While many others with magnificently large blooms are short live, from 1 to 3 days, this smaller orchid cactus will have a prolific display of the prettiest blooms from the start in bud forms right into a fully open flowers, and this can take weeks to enjoy.

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