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Sep 7, 2016 4:11 PM CST
|Baja, I love keeping track of your Dudleya photos. How is your planting project coming along.|
Sep 7, 2016 8:25 PM CST
|Glad you're enjoying them. We put a line of green Dudleyas in the park in the spring, including a 4-headed one that I induced to branch by coring. The squirrels have been snacking on them and a powdery plant we put in the same time. As long as they make it to when the rain starts, they'll be okay.
About half the plants I was trying to propagate have been attacked by mealy bugs. Kind of a late summer thing but it's ugly this year.
Looking forward to getting some rain and washing those plants clean. For now I am blasting the bugs out with soap water.
Sep 8, 2016 10:12 AM CST
|Can you explain what coring is?
Your park planting is going to be wonderful. Just wish I could view it in person.
I particularly like the coloring of Dudleya in the third photo. Very much like the one I have from Bandon Beach, Oregon.
I'll try to get photos this afternoon when I get home from work.
Our rains have returned sporadically, but is such a relief from the heat and drought we had during July and August. The plants are much happier now. Hope you rains arrive soon.
Sep 8, 2016 11:23 AM CST
|When one of these plants loses its growth point (to bugs, to herbivores, to my knife) it is quite likely to branch. Here is an example of one of the white finger types after its two growth points were wiped out by mealy bugs.
And here is a picture from habitat showing what looks like the same thing. These plants are tasty to all manner of mammals here (probably for the water, and probably because they lack spines).
Some pictures here to illustrate the coring process, which is how I forced branching on a plant which would not do so otherwise... this is a propagation trick to make more plants from cuttings, when they might not be easily available from seed.
I started by removing the growth point from the center of my biggest plant in January 2015. Its immediate response was to flower from every available pore (second pic). I removed those inflorescences ASAP and then the head grew back. So then I realized I had to dig deeper, and I gouged another half inch deeper into the center. You would be surprised how deep down the actual core of the plant is in the main stem.
What resulted was a crazy explosion of new heads, some of which were squeezed out, a couple maybe lost to mealy bugs. In the end the four heads in the last picture survived.
As a technical matter, it's probably a good idea to point out that coring one of these plants tends to leave a cavity in the center, which presents a serious risk of rot whenever it might be filled by water. Since these plants are winter growers I did the coring then, which meant I had to move the plant under cover (or move some cover to the plant) during our winter rains. Otherwise I am fairly sure it would have perished. Once it's healed and the new heads are big enough to squeeze together, the risk goes way down.
I am very curious to see your Dudleya pictures. The northern plants are pretty, especially when they flower.
Sep 8, 2016 6:05 PM CST
|Great photos and helpful information. Thank you for the explanation on coring. It is what we do to a sempervivum rosette that is starting to bloom. Many times it will force it to make new offsets. |
I just came in from taking a photo of my Dudleya farinosa. It has made it through an entire year out in the garden.
Sep 8, 2016 9:27 PM CST
|That's a keeper! Pretty amazing they can thrive in zone 8b. I guess that's only about one click away from what they normally experience in habitat. I'm from Oregon but never saw the Dudleyas there. They don't get that far up the coast, do they?|
The farinosas here were ravaged by mealies but here are photos from the spring. Those yellow cup-like flowers are really excellent.
Sep 8, 2016 11:19 PM CST
|Beautiful photos Baja.|
I got this from Bandon Beach, Oregon last summer. They have gone through one winter here, but it was very mild. I have one on the covered deck in a container, and the above photo was planted out in the raised bed last summer.
This is about 20 feet above my head to the lowest clump.
Here they are growing with Sedum spathulifolium.
Where in Oregon did you live?
Sep 9, 2016 8:33 PM CST
|Portlandia, for a while. Never got more than about a third of the way down the coast. The rainforest along the coast range was always a magical place for me, like full of life (where it wasn't all cut down).|
The Dudleyas here love places like the ones in your pictures where they can colonize a rocky cliff (or highway cut) and they don't seem to have much competition. I suspect they get a lot of their water from the air. The growth rate in nature must be a tiny fraction of what we observe in cultivation.
Sep 9, 2016 10:08 PM CST
|The ocean air waters them on the coastline. |
I have found several places where different Sedum spathulafolium grow, and some other native sedum. Both on the coast and in the Cascade Mountains.
Oct 1, 2016 10:15 PM CST
|Well, for what it's worth here's a couple of fall sacrifices on their way to becoming new plants. The second one is an island endemic from the Coronado Islands off the coast to the north of here. I gave away almost half of that second batch because, well, everybody loves native plants. |
Here's mom for #2 in February.
Oct 1, 2016 10:36 PM CST
|What beautiful, healthy cutting. You sure have a green thumb.|
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