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Author Topic: Rock gardens  (Read 1060 times)
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Reginaldo
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« on: August 07, 2014, 04:22:44 »


Rock gardens with dyckias, orchids, cacti


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or without dyckias


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chefofthebush
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« Reply #1 on: August 07, 2014, 07:30:17 »

Brilliant Reginaldo. Beautiful country, stunning landscapes and rock formations. You dont know what type of rock they are growing on?

Conrad

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jaga
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« Reply #2 on: August 07, 2014, 07:55:53 »

'fantastica' Gracias Reginaldo. Is this your back yard? The 2nd from the bottom is neat with the natural stone beam on the the 2 pivot form stone columns-can you walk under this?
« Last Edit: August 07, 2014, 07:58:36 by jaga » Logged
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Kayleen C
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« Reply #3 on: August 07, 2014, 10:26:49 »

Beautiful country.
Amazing where plants will grow.
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Reginaldo
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« Reply #4 on: August 07, 2014, 23:22:32 »

Conrad, the rock is quartzite, widely used for flooring. The following two photos showing best the rock formation.

Jaga, are natural formations without human interference, for now. The photographed plants are endemic to this habitat, called "campo rupestre". I would love to have a backyard like this ...


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splinter1804
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« Reply #5 on: August 09, 2014, 00:09:26 »

Hi Reginaldo – Once again , thanks for sharing your amazing pictures of plants in habitat with us. For many years I've been amazed at just how many brom growers also once grew cacti or orchids and vice versa. It's only now with your pictures that I begin to realise they have a lot more things in common that I previously thought.

I never thought I'd see orchids, bromeliads and cacti growing so close together that they are touching each other, let alone on a seemingly barren rock surface with possibly the only nutrients they can get being out of the debris trapped in the cracks in the rocks.

I have seen Australian native orchids such as Dendrobium speciosum, kingianum, striolatum and another called Liparis reflexa all growing on seemingly bare rocks in nature, but obviously not with bromeliads or cacti as we don't have any which are native to our country (at least I don' think we have), so to see the pic's you have shared with us is pretty special to me as I love seeing all plants in habitat.

I was particularly interested to know more about the orchid shown very clearly in your Pic 3. It has a similar bulbous growth habit to an orchid called a Bifrenaria which we grow in this area but was originally an import from South America I think. However your pic seems to show a reasonably tall flower spike which is much taller than the ones on the plants we grow which grow barely above the foliage. Do you know any more about it, such as name colour of flowers etc?

The rock formation in your Pic.4 is quite amazing also; I always ask myself how did these rocks get in such a position but I never have an answer. As everyone else says, it's beautiful country and shown in all its splendor in your Pic.6.

I'm certainly no geologist but I can still appreciate the wonderful rock formations in your Pic.7 and the perfectly formed bands of grey rock. Once more I'm amazed when looking at Pic.8 and wonder how the cracks are so straight. They look just like someone put a string line on the rock and cut along the line they're so straight. I guess there's just so many questions in nature that we'll never be able to answer.......... Anyway, thanks for sharing such interesting pictures.

All the best, Nev.
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Reginaldo
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« Reply #6 on: August 09, 2014, 01:28:28 »

Hi Nev, Bifrenaria also occurs in "campos rupestres" but I never found this orchid in the places I visited, unfortunately.
The orchids appearing in photographs that are Bulbophyllum ipanemense (now B. exaltatum) and Pleurothallis teres (now Acianthera teres).
Less common, but also occurs in the "campo rupestre" some species of Laelia. The following two photos of L. flava with dyckias (are old photos, and not very good).



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chefofthebush
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« Reply #7 on: August 09, 2014, 16:37:31 »

Thanks for those appetising photos Reginaldo!

We must not forget about those unseen plants that are also present in the Photos -  just not visible. Remember that many orchids and grasses have symbiotic relationships with fungi and I just wonder whether the fungi benefit the Dychias as well? It will be interesting to scratch about in that soil! (At least for me!)

Keep sending in those photos, Reginaldo!

Muchas Gracias!

Conrad
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splinter1804
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« Reply #8 on: August 09, 2014, 23:33:32 »

Hi Reginaldo - Thanks for providing the names of the orchids I asked for. I haven't seen or even heard of Bulbophyllum exaltatum or Acianthera teres; but then I haven't grown orchids for many years now. We do have a few native Bulbophyllums here in Australia but they are from memory usually small plants with very small flowers. The smallest I remember was appropriately called being called Bulbophyllum minutisimum which consists of strings of crowded flattened spherical pseudobulbs 2 to 3mm diameter. The psudobulbs were green when the plant was grown in the shade, and red when growing in full sun.

It was found in my area in the 1960-70's high up in very old Fig Trees and whenever there was a death of one of these old giants and it came down in a storm, word would spread to native orchid growers like wildfire and they seemed to come out of the woodwork and the very next day would be climbing all over the fallen tree to save any remaining plants.

The National Parks and Wildlife Service in N.S.W. at that time enforced a law that said "you could not collect native orchids"; that's it! It didn't discriminate, you could not collect native orchids under any circumstances. It was a blanket cover which applied to all Australian native orchids and was designed to protect the natives in habitat from collectors and re-sellers.

The thing is, that even when that habitat was threatened or being bulldozed, it was still illegal to collect these plants. It was simply like a lot of the "one size fits all" regulations of today, there was no provision for exceptional circumstances, that was it, "you could not collect native orchids" end of story.

What it meant of course was, that if we had all stuck strictly to the law and these fallen plants weren't collected they would otherwise have died and eventually this species could have become extinct.

Fortunately they still live on in some collections even though illegally obtained, and let me say it's the stupidity of the laws that forced the growers at that time into committing illegal acts like collecting threatened plants. I don't know what the law is regarding the collection of threatened native orchids today, but I expect that unfortunately, nothing much has changed.

All the best, Nev.
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Reginaldo
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« Reply #9 on: August 10, 2014, 04:44:05 »

Nev, but, on the other hand, the ex situ collections held by individuals suffer a great threat of extinction when the collector becomes unable to care for the plants, or when he dies, because the family members have no specific knowledge nor interest for its cultivation.

In several ex situ collections, many species are kept close together and it becomes difficult to avoid crosses between species. This question is especially critical for Dyckia species.

From the point of view of long term conservation of species, there are valid arguments both a side and another (ex situ cultivate or maintain habitat), but either way they wil be very threatened...
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Reginaldo
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« Reply #10 on: August 10, 2014, 04:51:58 »

Yes Conrad, and there are also environmental factors such as temperature, altitude, ventilation, humidity. The evening dew may drip from the surface of the stone and provide moisture to the plant ...
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splinter1804
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« Reply #11 on: August 10, 2014, 23:19:49 »

Reginaldo - Looking again at your pictures of Laelia flava in your previous post, I forgot to mention that although it isn't a native of our country, it is used widely in hybridisation as it passes on its brilliant yellow colour in most cases to the resulting hybrids, which is another reason why we must do all within our power to help preserve the species both orchid and bromeliad.

We should not forget we would never have the many beautiful hybrids we have today if it hadn't been for species, and quite apart from their value as "stand alone" specimens of a species, they are still regularly used by many hybridists to re-introduce and strengthen colour, vigor and other desirable features back into existing breeding lines to maintain these valuable traits.

To continue our discussion on preservation of the species, let me say I completely understand when you say "the ex situ collections held by individuals suffer a great threat of extinction when the collector becomes unable to care for the plants, or when he dies, because the family members have no specific knowledge nor interest for its cultivation", as I have seen it happen on occasions with both bromeliads and orchids, but fortunately, these cases are in the minority.

However, a positive feature is that the owners of these threatened plants are often members of organisations such as orchid or bromeliad societies/clubs where the main object of that organisation is the preservation of these types of threatened species. In these situations, many of these plants in collections are often swapped between other members and the more people who are growing these threatened plants, the more chance of survival they have. Often these clubs have members who are also honorary members of various botanical gardens and plants can be made available to be grown there also which gives them yet another life line.

Like any other plant,the risk of cross pollination between species is always there where ever there are insects present, unless of course they are grown in an insect free environment. However to make such an environment would be far too expensive for the average grower. Given all of the possible problems which may arise, the thing is, I personally think it's better to at least try and rescue these plants (which will otherwise die for certain if no action is taken) and try to grow them on to maintain the species status, and I'm not alone in this line of thought.

The ideal answer of course is to maintain the natural habitat; unfortunately this course of action is taken out of our hands by decisions made by Governments and the giant corporations who control what happens to the land. They have money invested and they aren't going to risk losing this for the sake of a few plants that may be threatened by extinction. Once again, in the end the realisation that we are all controlled in some way by the almighty dollar, becomes apparent.

The next best thing is that (where possible) these plants are rescued and re-located. Even if attempts are unsuccessful, they at least did have a chance which is more than they had in their natural habitat which was being destroyed for various reasons......We can but try.

I'll get down off my soap box now.

All the best, Nev.
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Reginaldo
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« Reply #12 on: August 11, 2014, 04:22:39 »

The ideal answer of course is to maintain the natural habitat; unfortunately this course of action is taken out of our hands by decisions made by Governments and the giant corporations who control what happens to the land. They have money invested and they aren't going to risk losing this for the sake of a few plants that may be threatened by extinction. Once again, in the end the realisation that we are all controlled in some way by the almighty dollar, becomes apparent.


Nev, I fully agree with your statement above.

I think the solution (keep in habitat or grow ex situ) can not be generalized, but depends on the specific situation of each species and the threats she suffers in habitat

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chefofthebush
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« Reply #13 on: August 11, 2014, 08:14:53 »

Concur Nev!

Genetic preservation is of great importance for the spices. But we must remember that the genetical material that makes up a species is not uniform and in constant flux. Each individual have subtle variations that make it unique in the population and the sum of those variations makes up the species apart from the constant factors that defines the species.

Destruction of natural habitat and the cutting off and isolation of parts of the species natural habitat fencing them into "islands" and limits the natural movement of species genetical traits within a population. This weakens the population as a whole and can destroy the plant even within its natural setting or habitat.

We cannot only save 2 of a kind like Noah. Leaving a portion of plants in the "wild" (which to is under indirect threat by pollution and man have environmental factors - global warming) does not guarantee survival. A more holistic approach is necessary involving the conservation and the direct involvement of "caretakers" -  in the form of interested collectors - in the preservation of the species. In today's society if something is not of value - it is not required. Collectors add value to the species and at least give it a status above a weed. I think more collaboration should be done between the passive conservation in "parks" and an active preservation within the collectors nursery.

As with the isolation of species in shrinking parks, so too must nurseries prevent isolation within the nursery. Active pollen, seed and plant exchange must occur.

Of this I have had some experience in the collection of Tillandsia I have and that I cannot get any seed production from the plants I have as they were imported by one individual from a single supplier and are all related and are self sterile. Obtaining viable pollen is a mission in South Africa for my Tillandsia species.

This is becoming a very interesting post Reginaldo, thanks.

Conrad
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