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Avatar for Yehoshua18
May 8, 2020 10:35 AM CST
Los Angeles, CA
Here are 3 mystery plants photographed two days ago at the Mlidred Mathias Botanical Garden on UCLA campus. Does anyone know their names?
Thanks for your help!

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Last edited by Yehoshua18 May 8, 2020 11:37 AM Icon for preview
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May 8, 2020 11:29 AM CST
Name: Kelly
Redding, California (Zone 9b)
Bee Lover Birds Garden Photography Orchids Xeriscape
I think you have 3 different Puya species. Photo #2 I believe is Puya spathacea. The other two I don't know. Do a search for Puya images and you should find some matches.
Avatar for Yehoshua18
May 8, 2020 11:38 AM CST
Los Angeles, CA
Thanks, Kelly, I'll look into those Puyas.
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May 8, 2020 11:38 AM CST
Name: Kelly
Redding, California (Zone 9b)
Bee Lover Birds Garden Photography Orchids Xeriscape
On a second look... I think #3 may be an Aloe.
Avatar for Yehoshua18
May 8, 2020 11:50 AM CST
Los Angeles, CA
I was checking the single red flower and was wondering if it might be a ginger -- a Zingiber, Costus, or Alpinia species. What do you think, Kelly?
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May 8, 2020 11:56 AM CST
Name: Stefan
SE europe(balkans) (Zone 6b)
Cactus and Succulents Sempervivums Bromeliad Adeniums Bookworm Sedums
Tropicals Fruit Growers Foliage Fan Orchids Bulbs Apples
Its a bromeliad..aechmea if i had to guess..
No ginger has serrated leaves...that i know of anyway
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May 8, 2020 11:59 AM CST
Name: Stefan
SE europe(balkans) (Zone 6b)
Cactus and Succulents Sempervivums Bromeliad Adeniums Bookworm Sedums
Tropicals Fruit Growers Foliage Fan Orchids Bulbs Apples
I think 2 is hesperaloe parviflora and 3 is dycki platifphylla
Last edited by skopjecollection May 8, 2020 12:06 PM Icon for preview
Avatar for Yehoshua18
May 8, 2020 12:11 PM CST
Los Angeles, CA
Thanks Skopje, you are correct about the leaves which would disqualify gingers.
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May 8, 2020 12:18 PM CST
Name: Baja
Baja California (Zone 11b)
Cactus and Succulents Seed Starter Xeriscape Container Gardener Hummingbirder Native Plants and Wildflowers
Garden Photography Region: Mexico Plant Identifier Forum moderator Plant Database Moderator Garden Ideas: Level 1
I also thought H. parviflora but then I looked closer and the flowers appear to be a different color when they open. (Can you share a close up photo of an open flower?) Also, the layout of the racemes is a little off, too many branches, too densely flowered. So actually #2 may be a terrestrial bromeliad. I don't know which. #3 is not an aloe, Dyckia would seem to be a closer match. I don't know much about the different species of Dyckia so I couldn't say more than that.
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May 8, 2020 12:18 PM CST
Name: Stefan
SE europe(balkans) (Zone 6b)
Cactus and Succulents Sempervivums Bromeliad Adeniums Bookworm Sedums
Tropicals Fruit Growers Foliage Fan Orchids Bulbs Apples
Yehoshua18 said:Thanks Skopje, you are correct about the leaves which would disqualify gingers.



aaannd the other 2 ? did you check those?
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May 8, 2020 12:21 PM CST
Name: Stefan
SE europe(balkans) (Zone 6b)
Cactus and Succulents Sempervivums Bromeliad Adeniums Bookworm Sedums
Tropicals Fruit Growers Foliage Fan Orchids Bulbs Apples
puya dyckioides? Nah..too rare..to thick flowers...
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May 8, 2020 12:25 PM CST
Name: Stefan
SE europe(balkans) (Zone 6b)
Cactus and Succulents Sempervivums Bromeliad Adeniums Bookworm Sedums
Tropicals Fruit Growers Foliage Fan Orchids Bulbs Apples
Did some checking
1 is quensnelia, likely testudo..
Avatar for Yehoshua18
May 8, 2020 12:43 PM CST
Los Angeles, CA
Skopje, you just made my day with that Quensnelia ID. I never heard of that genus before. Nicely done! Regarding second plant, I lean towards Puya spathacea for flower color and leaning habit. H. parviflora flowers from what I have seen have some pink in them and stand more vertically.
Last edited by Yehoshua18 May 8, 2020 12:48 PM Icon for preview
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May 8, 2020 12:46 PM CST
Name: Stefan
SE europe(balkans) (Zone 6b)
Cactus and Succulents Sempervivums Bromeliad Adeniums Bookworm Sedums
Tropicals Fruit Growers Foliage Fan Orchids Bulbs Apples
Yehoshua18 said:Skopje, you just made my day with that Quensnelia ID. I never heard of that genus before. Nicely done!


I still think 2 is hesperaloe after combing all the bromeliad genera...
Avatar for Yehoshua18
May 8, 2020 12:52 PM CST
Los Angeles, CA
Isn't Hesperaloe foliage also bluer than the foliage pictured?
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May 8, 2020 12:55 PM CST
Name: Baja
Baja California (Zone 11b)
Cactus and Succulents Seed Starter Xeriscape Container Gardener Hummingbirder Native Plants and Wildflowers
Garden Photography Region: Mexico Plant Identifier Forum moderator Plant Database Moderator Garden Ideas: Level 1
Hesperaloe flowers do not change color when they open. There are also other differences in the inflorescence which I pointed out earlier.
Avatar for Yehoshua18
May 8, 2020 1:06 PM CST
Los Angeles, CA
Thank you Baja.
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May 8, 2020 2:00 PM CST
Name: Kelly
Redding, California (Zone 9b)
Bee Lover Birds Garden Photography Orchids Xeriscape
99% certain that #2 isn't Hesperaloe. I have a bunch in my yard and they don't look like that. I would still bet that it is Puya, but then that's why I don't gamble Smiling
Avatar for Yehoshua18
May 8, 2020 3:12 PM CST
Los Angeles, CA
Thank you Kelly.
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