Saturday, July 19, 2014

Avonia day 2014 (4 pics)

It's that magical time of the year again when Avonia quinaria ssp. alstonii opens its flowers ♥
It has been flowering for a while now but today I finally could catch it for a photo shooting :)

Btw, Anacampseros filamentosa ssp. namaquensis is still flowering, too. Less spectacular but still very pretty!


  1. Who was it that said they had trouble getting plants to flower? Doesn't look like that to me. It seems as though this blog is beginning to show quite a few flowers; beautiful flowers on not so easy to grow succulents. Congratulations Rika, your Avonias and Anacampseros are obviously growing, and flowering, very nicely. I believe as most your plants get older and build up strength they will flower much more regularly. Your collection is going through its maturation process. You'll be able to determine which plants will adapt to your environmental conditions and some that will not. Over time, and with your help, your collection will evolve. If you think about it, it's really exciting. And, through your willingness and labors, you are allowing us (those that follow your blog) to enjoy it also. Thanks!

    BTW The Avonias in flower are really lovely. :)

    1. Thank you, they really are! :)

      I don't know what happened, I'm as surprised as you are. Some like Avonias and Neohenricia seem to flower every year here but I was amazed to have Aloinopsis rubrolineata developing a flower at its first attempt this year. And Prepodesma orpenii has had 3 flowers in a row! Not to mention the very young Stomatium seedlings. This is very exciting!
      I'm still trying to figure out why my Aloinopsis malherbei is drying up flowers at an early stage - it seems strong and healthy (maybe roots have to be checked but I already did that several months ago when I was suspecting mealy bugs). Actually I think Ebracteola wilmaniae is growing flowers too, but it's kind of untimely (I bought it with a flower in winter) so I'm not sure - maybe they need 6 months to develop? XD
      I think your advise really helped with flowering. When I see a flower bud I water a little bit more to support it. This way more flowers could fully develop and open this year :)

      Anacampseros are growing like crazy, especially the seedlings. I sowed them because I'm curious and eager to grow any plants from seed but now I have 9 plants developing quickly. I might have to give some of them away soon, to the delight of someone else :)

      Thank you Bob for encouraging me!

    2. You also have to take into consideration the origin of each plant, in terms of flowering. Plants that you grow from seed have to reach a certain level of maturity in order to flower. They also have to build up a certain level of food (sugar/starch) reserve in order to flower and that depends on your growing conditions, and light is an important factor.

      Plants that you buy are initially working with the conditions they were grown under by someone else. They are a certain age, and you may not know that age, and they have a food reserve based on the environmental conditions of another location. Many times purchased plant will flower well for a year or two and then stop. This usually indicates that they were grown under greenhouse conditions in the nursery and had adequate food reserves to flower, but once they are in the buyer's conditions they may lose their food reserve over time because they are not receiving the same care as in the nursery, and again, the amount of light is usually the limiting factor.

      If a plant is healthy, and growing well, but doesn't flower, there are three main reasons: (1) It is not old enough (not mature). (2) It doesn't have enough food (sugar) reserve to produce flowers (this is a function of its environment). (3) There is(are) some physiological condition(s) that is(are) not being forfilled - such as day length, temperature, need for a dormant period, etc. Unfortunately, for a lot of succulents, especially mesembs, we don't fully understand some of the required physiological conditions because they have never really been studied under experimental conditions. Such studies are usually done at a university level and reserved for those plants that are economically important - and most succulents don't qualify. :)

      Sorry for being so long winded. Sometimes I just get into teach mode. o_O

    3. No no I really appreciate your explanations! Please do get into teach mode whenever you feel like it :) I learn so much from you.

      That's very true that the plants we buy as adult ones from nurseries still have the old resources to feed on and flower for a while. I've noticed that they flower the same year, then stop for a year or more, then start flowering again once they've learnt to lower their expectations XD

      Well, as hobby growers we just have to try and give them the best care there is in the conditions we have and can not change.

      Reading what I just wrote, it seems to apply to humans same as plants ^^a