Aroids forum: Hello Aroiders

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Kentucky 😔 (Zone 6a)
Region: Kentucky Tropicals Plant and/or Seed Trader Moon Gardener Cactus and Succulents Garden Ideas: Level 1
Plant Identifier
Dec 12, 2012 11:24 PM CST
This is largely copied and pasted from another forum I recently joined, I dont feel comfortable chiming in on this forum until I introduce myself, and this will save me alot of time, I hope its not a problem. Thanks for reading


I just thought i might let you all know a bit about me my history, and my plants. Hopefully ill seem a bit less strange, maybe not :D

I come from a very strong ag. background, Im fifth or sixth confirmed generation farmin the same beautiful 100 acres in central KY. I love it here but nothing about the climate suits me! From the cold winters to the pollen overdose every year(day)...ugh. I do love the flora/fauna here, though a bit boring to me... I have a flair for the extreme and bizarre :S
Thats why I post this here, I see aroids isnt the most lively forum here but its were my interests have taken me. So seeing as the contributors of this sub-forum are the people i want to make freinds with the most, I may as well apologize now, Im sure I will:post too much, dig up ancient posts, step on a few toes, and generally just be a pest. I have basically no one to talk about these plants with, my favorite plants! Your probably stuck with me...

Anyway, I dont remember my first experiences with plants, I was far too young, but I first became truly interested in plants about the time I was flunking out of high school...Shortly thereafter I commandeered my dads derelict poly and wood greenhouse. My interests then were cacti and succulents and in no time I had more than a hobby would allow, opened up shop and expanded my plant base. It was nice! I had literally thousands of xerophytes and lots of other neat plants. I only grew what interested me, and was in a market that was overflooded with your average ole petunia baskets...bleh...not for me. It turned out I wasnt alone either. I grew my sales to several hundred dollars a week, modestly, did what I wanted, and owned THE COOLEST collection that I knew of. Being in a public place while selling these type plants allowed me to "inherit" so many nice old plants, and I could always justify buying any plant, within reason, on the grounds Ill propagate and sell them.
Sooo... The stock market crashed, as did my market, and I found myself with with an evergrowing collection that wasnt paying the bills like it had...ouch. Then it happened...

It was a dark and stormy really was... :D
I was asleep in my bed... I felt a cold, but familiar hand lay upon my shoulder... I turned to see who it was... it was...INFLUENZA...AAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHHH... So I spent that stormy night in bed, and it turns out that stormy night, a cold january night,the wind blew from the east that night. It never does that here, the mountains block it, usually. Well the temp. was -2 and the wind was steady at 20-25mph with gusts of up to 50. That wind managed to catch a corner of the poly and snatched it loose...and blew the door open. My "greenhouse" was now a 30 mph wind tunnel. Normally I would have checked it several times through the night. I did not. By morning when I oozed from bed and down the stairs, quickly solidified on contact with that air... and ran to the GH only to see plastic flapping, my heart sank, I entered, and was crushed. IT WAS ALL GONE, 50yr old jade trees 6 ft tall, wilting to the floor, aloes that outweigh me dripping their juice from the mushy leaves, and about 3000 misc. pots of plants, most succulents, but I also managed to lose about 30 varieties of EE totaling about 300 plants, and my sole amorph. The honeymoon was over...I salvaged about 30-40 plants, and was done...
Flash forward about 6 years and Ive got the bug again, more accurately maybe, my hearts healed, atleast enough...:D
I havent counted plants but ive got a nice shelf full of cacti and succulents, and lots of EEs, still only 2 amorphs yet. (pics are at flickr, my name there is grabmebymyhandle). All jammed into my little sun porch, but Im all but finished with my new greenhouse. Things are lookin up for me and my plants, but I also have a mortgage and a few more little mouths to feed(whoops). So its tough to justify buying new plants now, and the ones I want arent cheap or readily available.
Im lookin really forward to to talkin to people about the plants I like, instead of "Whoa thats gnarly, what is it" I hope to get a few "nice plant" or atleast someone know what it is...I just have no one to talk aroid with, my poor wife...Im lucky she hasnt snapped from all my plant jabbering.

To be perfectly honest, I really hope to find some people to trade with soon, I certainly have enough desirable plants to make some good swap, and I want lots more plants so...

I also must admit The only reason I came here specifically is this sub forums moderator, Thank you lari ann for all your hard work in this field, your plants are AMAZING, I only have the 2 you let slip away to the public but they are 2 of my favs, I drool at your sight regularly, I sure hope to obtain more in the future.

Im a bit confused on how to go about trading here, Ive found the list, but is there no "classified" forum? Im sure Ill get the hang of things
I see so many nice aroids on Ebay, but those little mouths I alot. My plant budget certainly could use a boost, but as Im a master of scavenging and rooting little pieces I do have a reasonable collection to trade from...I really want some new EEs and amorphs!

So here we are, the end of my post, more like novel, thanks if you made it though it...hopefully Ill talk to you all soon.
Please tree mail me for trades, I'm ALWAYS actively looking for more new plants, and love to trade!
Name: Noel Calvert
Tumaco, Colombia-South America (Zone 13b)
A gringo?Where?(does a doubletake)
Dec 13, 2012 8:11 AM CST
hello Swayback,
I love the way you introduced yourself. Welcome to the forum. Steve from & LariAnn frequent this part of the site regularly. Also there are soem other good people here interested in talking about plants. I am basically here all the time getting information on new plants, commenting on others plants, or simply looking for something new to talk about. I live in Tumaco, Colombia, & I had the tropical plant bug years before leaving the United States. You can check out my blog on this site at Noel Calvert to read about how I came to be here, & to see my current collection of plants. I am wild collecting them, so there will be rare ones that are not available in the States (Yet). I am scheduled to go to Ecuador again next week, & on my return I plan to collect more plants if my wife doesn't snap first! She is getting jealous of the plants! HEHE! Honestly, I am trying to get her more involved as I plan to make this a full time business very soon. How many people get to make their hobby pay the bills like you did? I am working on it. Have a good time on the site.

Noel Calvert
Kneel & swear fealty to the Lord Dragon, or you will be knelt! Mazrim Taim
Name: Evan
Pioneer Valley south, MA, USA (Zone 6a)
Charter ATP Member Aroids Irises I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Tropicals Vermiculture
Foliage Fan Bulbs Hummingbirder Lover of wildlife (Black bear badge) Composter Plant Database Moderator
Dec 14, 2012 8:32 PM CST

Plants Admin Emeritus

Hi swayback, Welcome. The more the merrier.

Specifically for trading and selling is Co-ops, Group Buys and Classifieds, here:
A lot of the trading is sort of ad lib in the threads as well. There are lots of crazy generous folks here
Name: LariAnn Garner
south Florida, USA
When in doubt, do the cross!
Forum moderator Pollen collector Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Aroids Seed Starter
Foliage Fan Region: Florida Tropicals Container Gardener
Dec 15, 2012 2:39 PM CST


Welcome to the Aroid Forum, Swayback! I'm glad you appreciate my work and know that I am working hard to be able to release more of my hybrids to the general public (but this time, with my consent and, hopefully, with compensation for them). Your comments and questions are welcome here and if I can guide you in any way, I'm happy to.

Aroidia Research

P.S. a good number of my newest hybrids are not yet illustrated on my site - I can produce them faster than I can catalogue them!
Be the Captain of What's Gonna Happen!

Mar 14, 2013 8:23 PM CST
Hello, I'm Sondra and I just joined in the hope that I can get some useful information about Aroids. I think maybe I've met LariAnn at one of the events at Mounts Botanical Gardens here in West Palm Beach: I purchased many of the wonderful pots she sells and have all the sizes except the largest one.

My question is this. Once an Aroid like the Elephant Ears and the Borneo Giant stops producing really big leaves and only produces small ones, can it be saved? Will it ever recover?

I dug up the Elephant Ear and replanted it elsewhere in my garden, but it still only makes very small leaves. It seems to be healthy except for that. My Giant went through the very bad cold snap we had here in West Palm a few years ago and has never grown big leaves since then. It's planted in a bed with 2 varieties of lobster claws which do very well. They grow and bloom regularly.

I tried planting ferns there as companion plants re. an article by LariAnn and for awhile it seemed to be growing better, but now one of the ferns is doing poorly too: I guess there could be something wrong with the soil, but I don't know what it could be or how to find out what the problem is.

Can anyone help me?
Name: LariAnn Garner
south Florida, USA
When in doubt, do the cross!
Forum moderator Pollen collector Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Aroids Seed Starter
Foliage Fan Region: Florida Tropicals Container Gardener
Mar 18, 2013 5:45 PM CST


The big Ears are heavy feeders and will decline gradually if not provided with ample nutrients. Unless your soil is very rich, the plant will exhaust the available nutrients to the point where it cannot sustain that big growth you saw at the beginning. The way to rejuvenate them is to replant in new soil rich in composted matter, such as composted cow manure, and supplement with feeds of Miracle Gro solution at a rate of 1 tsp per 4 gallons water. You can use that mix several times per week. The old trunk must be completely buried except for the growing point. You can also bury the trunk longwise and slanted slightly upward in the direction of the growing point. The trunk should have at least 6 inches of soil on top of it for best results.

Hope this helps,
Be the Captain of What's Gonna Happen!

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