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Thread: Growing a better(?) Brocchinia photo log

  1. #1
    clippity-clip-clip Clue's Avatar
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    Growing a better(?) Brocchinia photo log

    If you're familiar with Brocchinia reducta, then you'll probably know two-ish things about it:

    1. In the wild they grow as neat little pipes ("tight rosette")
    2. In cultivation they do not ("sad pineapple thing")

    The solution, as Barry Rice writes here, is high light intensity. So naturally, I parked my Brocchinia outside with my Sarracenia for the summer because my Nepenthes lights won't cut it. The only problem was my "screenhouse" that keeps the critters out is shaded in the late afternoon and evening.

    Brocchinia reducta "build"
    The left side has the space, but not the light. Why's that?

    Brocchinia reducta "build"
    Whoever planted ivy by this fence didn't realize (a) that ivy eats fences and (b) grows much higher than the fence to flower.

    Good thing I have a nice, unobscured southern exposure to work with elsewhere. Behold, the laziest build in human history:

    1. Get a platform.
    Brocchinia reducta "build"
    (I like to think inside the box on these projects)

    2. "Cleaning"
    Brocchinia reducta "build"

    3. Various assembly
    Brocchinia reducta "build"
    This window pane is so the box won't get any more water damage, otherwise it's back to step 1.

    Brocchinia reducta "build"
    I was gifted a nice undrained ceramic pot recently.

    4. Locate a test subject
    Brocchinia reducta "build"
    Preferably one that belongs to you

    5. Trap test subject
    Brocchinia reducta "build"

    Brocchinia reducta "build"

    Brocchinia reducta "build"

    Brocchinia reducta "build"
    (Note to self: get denser rocks)

    6. Wait

    Hopefully I'll have a skinnier Brocchinia to show soon, otherwise he'll be sent to the gym next!

    Bonus: I fed it some earwigs because I hate earwigs. Earwigs, which are normally skillful swimmers, quickly sink and drown in the urn.
    Brocchinia reducta "build"
    Last edited by Clue; 07-21-2017 at 05:51 PM.
    "I, for one, can't wait to grow Nepenthes extincta!"
    Plant List ; blog

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    Nice setup! There does seem to be a big difference in appearance between wild and cultivated Brocchinia reducta. It would be cool if your plant also turns yellow like those in the wild. I wonder how often you will need to add water to the urn growing it outside.

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    carnivorous plants of the world -- unite! DragonsEye's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tanukimo View Post
    I wonder how often you will need to add water to the urn growing it outside.
    I imagine very frequently.

    Assuming this works (and I'm rooting for you that it does), are you planning on cutting it free of the wire mesh? If you were to cut the mesh in half and use clips or zip ties to hold the halves together, that might make extricating the plant easier down the road.

    "Blessed are the cracked….
    For they are the ones who let in the light."



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    carnivorous plants of the world -- unite! DragonsEye's Avatar
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    No idea why this double posted.

    Last edited by DragonsEye; 07-22-2017 at 08:36 AM.
    "Blessed are the cracked….
    For they are the ones who let in the light."



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    nimbulan's Avatar
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    It will certainly be interesting to see how this experiment turns out.

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    clippity-clip-clip Clue's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tanukimo View Post
    Nice setup! There does seem to be a big difference in appearance between wild and cultivated Brocchinia reducta. It would be cool if your plant also turns yellow like those in the wild. I wonder how often you will need to add water to the urn growing it outside.
    Thanks Howard! A good spraying every morning does the trick, and I could probably do every other day but some live Sphagnum is popping up and I'd like to grow it out (plus I'm trying to establish some U. pubescens in the pot). For no particularly good reason I also keep it sitting in a bit of water, but I wouldn't do that in the winter for fear of rot.

    Quote Originally Posted by DragonsEye View Post
    Assuming this works (and I'm rooting for you that it does), are you planning on cutting it free of the wire mesh? If you were to cut the mesh in half and use clips or zip ties to hold the halves together, that might make extricating the plant easier down the road.
    Hi DragonsEye, it will probably have to be cut out down the road but I'm not too concerned since Brocchinia are usually slow growers. Clips are definitely a good idea, I'll keep them in mind.

    Quote Originally Posted by nimbulan View Post
    It will certainly be interesting to see how this experiment turns out.
    For sure, I'm a little obsessed with Brocchinia now. The BACPS potluck yesterday gave me a chance to see some excellent greenhouse-grown B. reducta:

    Brocchinia reducta in a Heliamphora sea
    These tubular specimens were growing in a tray with some Heliamphora and very happy Utricularia alpina.

    Brocchinia reducta and Utricularia alpina
    These were positioned right underneath a beam but evidently the light is very strong (see the Heliamphora shape and color).

    Brocchinia reducta
    There were also some potted clumps in a more open location - these must be very old plants. The yellow color on these seems mostly from plants that have finished flowering. Another pot next door:
    Brocchinia reducta

    spent Brocchinia reducta inflorescences
    It was too late to see the Brocchinia flowers unfortunately.




    Anyone else want to share how they're growing Brocchinia and what has and hasn't worked for them? I'm also interested in growing B. tatei and especially B. hechtioides at some point, but these are even harder to find in the US than B. reducta.
    Last edited by Clue; 07-25-2017 at 06:37 PM.
    "I, for one, can't wait to grow Nepenthes extincta!"
    Plant List ; blog

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    clippity-clip-clip Clue's Avatar
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    Brocchinia reducta

    Brocchinia reducta

    So far so good; there probably won't be much to report until the very end of the season and unfortunately I don't think that's enough time to see any serious changes. I did shift the setup location so it basically gets full sun all day, there was a tree giving it a little afternoon shade originally. Anyways, the old strappy leaves the plant came with are slowly dying away and the new leaves are much wider, stiffer, and brighter in color. The plant is much waxier now, which seems to help it catch insects, it's caught a few fruit flies so far. It hasn't been a very hot summer so far but it seems like B. reducta isn't sensitive about higher temperature; I'd imagine if I tried to grow Heliamphora like this they'd overheat.

    Granted, the pictures today aren't much different than the pictures I originally posted, but I had already been growing it with some full sun for a few weeks. Summering B. reducta outdoors definitely has its benefits, by comparison this is how it looked as received in early July:
    Brocchinia reducta

    Brocchinia reducta
    and now, taken from the same angle.
    "I, for one, can't wait to grow Nepenthes extincta!"
    Plant List ; blog

  8. #8
    Species Freak mikefallen13's Avatar
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    Looking good so far! Definitely should be interesting to see how it looks after a few more months of growth.
    Good Growing!
    -Mike Fallen

    My Growlist: http://highlandtropicals.blogspot.co...-growlist.html

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