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Author Topic: Catopsis paniculata  (Read 1444 times)
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sdandy
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« on: January 22, 2011, 05:43:34 »

Here is a great sized Catopsis.  I didn't realize that they got so large.  I think this is probably Catopsis paniculata.

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« Last Edit: January 23, 2011, 00:41:14 by sdandy » Logged

splinter1804
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« Reply #1 on: January 22, 2011, 21:48:22 »

Hi Andy,

Very interesting; is that a pine tree it's growing on?

All the best, Nev.
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« Reply #2 on: January 22, 2011, 22:57:40 »

Yup Nev, it was a pine forest.  Even when it was a mixed pine/oak forest they were only on the pines.
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Kerry T.
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« Reply #3 on: January 23, 2011, 00:02:03 »

How big is big, Andy? It's hard to gauge the size in those great pics.

The biggest Catopsis I have seen in cultivation is Catopsis compacta - go figure with the name! (that is, if it is named correctly). My second-generation plant is in spike now.

There is only one example of Cat. paniculata photographed on the FCBS photo index, and it looks quite small. I checked on Unc D's Till DVD, which includes a comprehensive section on Catopsis. Have you seen that Andy? It includes several images of forms of paniculata in the wild - in various Mexican locations - as well as examples of male and female plants, and herbarium specimens. Some of them sure do look big! Did you see any inflos?

I imagine the pines have the ideal rough bark to which the airborne seeds attach. They obviously don't mind the (usually?) acidic pine leaves which must break down in their vases. Do the oaks have rough bark too? If so, what is your theory as to why they grow on the pines and not the oaks?

K
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« Reply #4 on: January 23, 2011, 00:39:26 »

Hmmm, I would be tempted to say that the leaves of the largest one were crowding close to 2' long...but I feel that would be a bit of an exaggeration.  Certainly 18" or more though.  They were quite large and impressive.  The color of the leaves were brilliant in the forest compared to the Tillandsias.

I just checked the DVD, looks to be a perfect match (gotta love good guesses!).  The only spikes I could see are in the pictures above.  They all were pretty high so tough to get a good picture of most.  The first one I saw was across on another ridge...I could see the color with my bare eyes, but in the binoculars the pendulous spike just jumped out at me.  Not sure why I didn't know about large Catopsis before.

I'm sure they also grow incidentally on the oaks too, but I didn't notice any (too much good stuff all around to distract me).  The oaks are generally really rough barked as well so I would have to assume it would be related to pH???  Or the bark has a different efficiency at collecting the moisture from the fog and dew (and maybe channels it differently)?  In the lower forests the oak bark is a magnet for orchids, Tillandsias, and even the few epiphyllums I saw.  The pines start appearing higher.  But usually there is a fairly wide transition zone where they are mixed and different exposures can switch the forest just by turning the bend.
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« Reply #5 on: January 23, 2011, 08:02:25 »

Hi all,

I did read somewhere once that you shouldn't grow brom's beneath She Oak (Casuarina) trees as the needles falling into the vases become toxic to the plant.

Are these the same types of "Oak" tree, and could this be the reason why they're not growing on the Oaks or are we talking about a different type of Oak?

Has anyone else had any experience with the oak needles being detrimental to broms when they fall into the vases? I know they don't hurt orchids as I used to use them in my orchid mix a long time ago Huh.

All the best, Nev.
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« Reply #6 on: January 23, 2011, 08:27:57 »

Hi everyone,

Nev I have never heard that, but last year a member of the Gold Coast Bromeliad Society told me that you should never use Pine bark to plant broms into apparently its poisonous to broms.  Has anyone ever heard that???

Alfina Cheesy
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« Reply #7 on: January 23, 2011, 09:55:41 »

Alfina,

I use Pine bark in my mix and have had no problems.

John Catlan writes in his Bromeliads under the Mango Tree book "Pine Bark. If the only bark you can lay your hands on is fresh, place in 20lite drums, fill with water plus add a complete soluble fertiliser plus Thrive with high nitrogen.
Fresh pine bark will absorb and use up extra nitrogen. it can be left soaking until the day before you use it. Tip it into a large pot and let it drain for a few hours before use. It may not be a perfect system but it is better than fresh bark."

John's book is full of handy tips.

Rick
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« Reply #8 on: January 23, 2011, 10:35:30 »

Rick,

Where did you buy that book from??? I have never heard of it.


Alfina Smiley
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« Reply #9 on: January 23, 2011, 10:39:22 »

Alfina,

John and Genny sell it from their nursery. $10 - money well spent I'd say.

Rick
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« Reply #10 on: January 23, 2011, 16:58:38 »

Hey Nev, I'm pretty sure it is a whole different family of trees.  These are Quercus, they have broad leaves.  They are really interesting trees.  I loved them growing up in the Midwest (near the Great Lakes area), but the Mexican oaks are more tropical oaks and definitely different than the ones I grew up with.  Mexico has an incredible variety, I think I heard around 300 or so species (out of the ~600 total species).  So they cover quite a wide number of latitudes, altitudes, and ecological niches.  And they generally make fantastic hosts for epiphytes (most obviously and successfully Tillandsias and orchids).  Some are evergreen and some are deciduous.  The ones where I grew up were great for lumber, but I heard that most of the Mexican oaks are not suited for lumber which makes them pretty lucky to not be too economically useful!
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splinter1804
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« Reply #11 on: January 23, 2011, 20:50:57 »

Hi Andy,

After thinking about all of the trips into the various bromeliad habitats you've frequently taken us into via your great photography and explanation, I began to wonder just what sort of work you do and what actually is your job title ?

The conclusion I've come to, is that you work in the conservation area and your job title just has to be "Detective of Bromeliad Species Habitats and Conservation"

Wow, what a job !

All the best, Nev.
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« Reply #12 on: January 23, 2011, 21:09:47 »

Ha ha, funny you should ask that Nev.  Currently I am unfortunately unemployed (which explains my unreasonable amount of time on the forum lately).  I am/was a chemist specializing in inorganic nanoparticle syntheses (and a whole bunch of less interesting other more business and sales related tasks).  I grew up on a farm, playing in the woods and swamp.  No formal education in biology/botany/ecology, but always a strong interest and learn from anyone and in any way I can.  Now if anyone wants to fund me on more travels or studying bromeliads or other plants, let me know (my bags are ready to go)!
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« Reply #13 on: January 23, 2011, 22:01:14 »

I'll join you if the budget allows
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« Reply #14 on: January 24, 2011, 05:12:46 »

Alfina,

John and Genny sell it from their nursery. $10 - money well spent I'd say.

Rick
Hi Rick,

Thanks for that, I didnt know, will have to pick one up next time we visit.

Alfina Grin
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