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Thread: Anybody grow Bat Plants?

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    ilbasso's Avatar
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    Anybody grow Bat Plants?

    I've been eyeing a "Black Bat Plant" at a local greenhouse and just read something about them liking lots of light and humidity and to grow them in 50/50 peat/perlite.

    Sounds familiar....

    Does anyone grow these? Are CP conditions ideal?

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    --Freedom Czar-- Fryster's Avatar
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    what the heck is a "bat plant"??
    Only a moral and virtuous people are capable of freedom; the more corrupt and vicious a people becomes, the more it has need of masters. -- Benjamin Franklin

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    Stay chooned in for more! Clint's Avatar
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    No, but I've seen HUGE flowering ones at wal mart that I've always wanted. If I only had a greenhouse....


    Fryster: http://seeds.thompson-morgan.com/pix/m/seeds/7/7338.jpg

    http://www.ubcbotanicalgarden.org/po...tegrifolia.jpg

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    --Freedom Czar-- Fryster's Avatar
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    That's one creepy looking plant.........
    Only a moral and virtuous people are capable of freedom; the more corrupt and vicious a people becomes, the more it has need of masters. -- Benjamin Franklin

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    OMG h8 pings MrFlyTrap2's Avatar
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    Cannot... Resist...

    Must... Have... Bat... Plant...


    Sounds like it be a perfect match to grow along cp's.
    My Grow List

    "It is only by studying nature that can we ever hope to defeat it."

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    ilbasso's Avatar
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    I saw the plant in a local greenhouse and was intrigued by the name. I came home and looked it up and saw just WHY it is a bat plant...and had to have one. The don't see too terribly expensive but I just don't know how tricky they are to grow.

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    wmgorum's Avatar
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    There were some beautiful bat plants at the Conservatory of Flowers in San Francisco when I was there in July to catch the CHOMP! exhibit. I think I have a picture floating around at home... I'll need to check when I get away from the office today.

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    Just bought some of these seeds and did some research into the matter. This is what I have found out.

    Also called "Cats Whiskers", "Jews Beard", "Voodoo Flower", and a host of other politically wrong wordings in the past

    Flowers: 2-3 years from seed
    Height: 36 inches
    Position: Partial Shade
    Hardiness Rating: 10
    Germination: Challenging
    Aftercare: Particular Care Required

    It grows to about 2ft. in height with flowers complete with filaments or whiskers 12in. long forming a flowing forked tail.

    Tacca chantrieri is grown in shade with filtered light and perfect wind protection. Use a rich organic soil mix with good drainage. Bat Plant could be a houseplant with high humidity

    Sowing Instructions: Sow immediately in trays, pots, etc of good seed compost in a propagator or warm place to maintain an optimum temperature of 27-29C (80-85F). It is essential that the soil temperature is high and kept steady.

    Sow 1.5mm (1/16in) deep in good moist seed compost and seal the container inside a polythene bag after sowing. Germination usually takes 1-9 months.

    Growing Instructions: Transplant seedlings when large enough to handle into 7.5cm (3in) pots of a good free draining compost, preferably a peat or peat substitute compost with 10% added grit.

    Aftercare Instructions: During the growing season (late spring to late summer) the plants will need to be watered very regularly and the compost must be well drained. Pot on as required into 13cm (5in) and finally 20cm (8in) pots. Give very little water through the winter and provide a temperature of 15-18C (60-65F) through the winter and 25-29C (75-85F) through the summer. Re-pot in February/March, shade from strong sun and give the occasional mist spray through the summer.

    For the sake of the plant, you should actually remove the bloom from the plant~ if it is showing one~
    So that the plant does not put its energy into keeping A bloom alive or making seed~
    And instead the plant can put its energy into re-establishing its own self.


    A mature plant @ 10 years may have a spread of 4 feet. Medium to low light , but never full direct sun. Allow the soil dry between watering times during the winter, keep it more moist during warm weather-78 or above- and humid all the time, without very much air circulation (dislikes drafts and wind-the leaves get burned edges). If you do not have a greenhouse it may be to your advantage to at least make a little one to keep the humidity up around this plant in the Winter if you bring it indoors. Another method of raising the humidity around tropicals is to place them on a large (restaurant) baking pan which has been filled with an inch of gravel which is kept filled with water. If this setup is on top of a heating mat (thermostatically controlled, about 85 degrees F.) so much the better. The humidity will rise up around the plant constantly.



    THE BIG NO-NO

    Misting.

    Misting a Tacca which is in a dry-air environment is an express ticket on the Death Express. What happens is the pores of the leaf surfaces are opened up, and the mist quickly dries up. While the plants pores are opened, and the leaves lose more moisture through their pores in the dry environment. After this process is repeated a few times, the leaves develop large yellow splotches and holes begin to form in the leaves, then the leaf edges turn brown and crisp. Soon one has a leafless plant which can no longer process sunlight into food for the roots for the rest of the winter months. Soon after, the remainder of the plant turns into a mass of blue fur, which runs to spores, and all is done.

    Bat Flowers do not adapt to how 'you' want it to grow. The problem with this whole scenario is that the Tacca is in a dry air environment, a place it shouldn't be in the first place. If you don't have a place that is always humid with slowly to non-moving air, this is specifically what Tacca requires. it is not like a peace lily; Tacca will NOT adapt to you. It is not particularly demanding once it is given everything it needs to succeed, humidity and protection from strong winds. You must provide Bat Flowers with what they require.

    Hope this helps.

    Wish me luck!

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