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Thread: Too cold for D. binata:

  1. #1
    Let's positive thinking! seedjar's Avatar
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    So my question is just the one in the title there; will temperatures under forty degrees F induce dormancy in my D. binata dichotoma? It just keeps getting bigger and bigger and I don't have a place that's tall enough for it. I want to grow it outside this summer, as we have fair temps up here and I think it could handle them. But right now we're still seeing nighttime lows in the thirties. Can I put my D. binatas outside without them going to sleep?
    It's the dichotoma that really needs to go, but I also have a multifida that could probably benefit from some outdoor growing. I've read that some D. binata can be fragile in high sun - what are your experiences? I live up in Washington on the coast, so it rarely gets too hot or dry around here. Summer highs are in the eighties and nineties. Any advice would be great.
    Thanks!
    ~Joe
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    Hi
    I live in at the foot of the blue mtns west of Sydney Australia.
    My experience is binata and Dichotoma can withstand fair extremes in temperature - Some colonies grow well in the upper mtns area where the temps vary form about a miniumum of 2 or 3 degrees celsius in winter to a maximum of about 37 celsius in summer - they seem to survive quite well in areas with planty of moisture.
    My advice is try them both outside - ive both species growing in my own collection outdoors in full sun and the temps vary from av 5-12 celsisus in winter right through to over 40 celsius in summer - they come back every year and look spectacular . In the natural enviroment the ones ive seen dont normally grow in full day sun , they seem to grow in full morning sun only or daplled sun normally along bank edges or on small cliffs particularly where there is a lot of air moisture such as near waterfalls etc.
    Mine at home grow in full sun - with no apparent ill effects - i think this species is adaptable and does over time adapt to full sun .

    some pics i took of a few last year
    Not great shots i know but the ones emerging from the water ( a permanent spring in the upper mtns ) i think show the adaptive nature of the species.









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    Let's positive thinking! seedjar's Avatar
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    Thanks for the info Belinda - very interesting pics. But will frosts send my plants back into dormancy? They just came out of dormancy now that I've set my lights back to longer photoperiods. You say your plants do OK with 5-12C in the winter, but that's closer to what we're getting for highs here. On a warm day, it's 6C. The nights are more like 0-2C. I'm not confident that my plants would interpret going from my 22C apartment to a 3C porch as 'springtime.' Their survival isn't a concern to me - I know they'd tough it through - but I don't want to stunt their growth for the season by moving them outside too early.
    ~Joe
    o//~ Livin' like a bug ain't easy / My old clothes don't seem to fit me /
    I got little tiny bug feet / I don't really know what bugs eat /
    Don't want no one steppin' on me / Now I'm sympathizin' with fleas /
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    RL7836's Avatar
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    Belinda,
    Thanks for great habitat pics. We don't get too many of them so it's always nice to see the plants from where they originate.

    SJ,
    If you get temps close to freezing now it is likely your plants may experience a temporary setback. We're so close to spring, you're probably better off just waiting a few weeks.

    If you keep them out next winter (preferably in-ground), I suspect they will appreciate the winter rest and be incredibly robust the following year...
    All the best,
    Ron
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  5. #5
    Let's positive thinking! seedjar's Avatar
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    Interesting... I've been told that it's better to keep them indoors. Incidentally, mine do go dormant briefly in the winter, due to shortened photoperiod. This year the mature growing points slept for a whole month, while the new stems only seemed to slow down and didn't quite die back to hibernacula. Is this kind of dormancy enough or is the cold somehow better? The winter here this year was frigid - we got a week of nights in the teens which is pretty extreme in my experience. And my outdoor growing area isn't the friendliest either, being a third-story patio on a windy hill. Hopefully once I move into a place with a yard I can accomodate more of my plants outside.
    ~Joe
    o//~ Livin' like a bug ain't easy / My old clothes don't seem to fit me /
    I got little tiny bug feet / I don't really know what bugs eat /
    Don't want no one steppin' on me / Now I'm sympathizin' with fleas /
    Livin' like a bug ain't easy / Livin' like a bug ain't easy... o//~

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    RL7836's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by [b
    Quote[/b] ]The winter here this year was frigid - we got a week of nights in the teens which is pretty extreme in my experience.
    Sorry - I misunderstood you earlier. If your winters are that cold, D. binata probably won't make it through.

    If you had lows in the 40's and were able to have a bog in the ground (in-ground bogs have less severe temperature swings), you'd come close to the native habitat and your plants would probably love it.

    Ooops...
    All the best,
    Ron
    You must do the thing you think you cannot do. --- Eleanor Roosevelt

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    I agree if it drops bellow 50's and stays below it for the most part during youre winter you have a perfect natural habitat

    cheers

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    Tropical Fish Enthusiast jimscott's Avatar
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    I keep my D. binata and plants of Multifida Extrema X Marston Dragon outside for spring, summer, and fall - basically 40 degrees and higher. They all die back and I move to the coldish attic, at a south facing window sill. In January, when the photoperiod inceases, they begin to send up new growth.

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