When do you remove the adventitious pups from orthophytum?
Let them get bigger than that, maybe about 3-4" across, and they should pop off easily.
Should I stake the inflorescence to keep it upright or let it flop over?
I got about 24 seeds from this 2 months ago and 2 germinated. I found another 18 seeds today and planted them. I think this thing is still flowering! If any of these grow to maturity it will be interesting to see what a non-nesting xOrthomea or xNeophytum will look like. All the ones shown in the Bromdex are crosses with nesting orthophytums.
It doesn't matter, you can let it flop.
I'd be very surprised if those bigeneric crosses took. I've never been able to cross anything to the upright Orthos except another upright Ortho, or make a xNeophytum with anything but O. navioides or O. vagans. They'll set seed, but usually it either turns out to be selfed or it doesn't germinate at all.
I'm not trying to pour cold water on your experiments, just saying that I wouldn't count your chickens until you've grown them out far enough to actually hear them cluck.
I am concerned that I did only get selfs, but we'll just have to wait and see.
The benefit of doing the odd crosses is the high failure rate. I couldn't handle too much success, I don't have the space.
Last season I did a number of crosses with Neo's & Ortho. gurkenii. I used the neo's as seed mothers, & was surprised to see a few did indeed take. I had visions of these amazing bigenerics with the form of neos, & the 'snake skin' foliage of the ortho. gurkenii...unfortunately none of the seed germinated. This issue of bigenerics developing seed that is not viable seems to be quite common with broms.
Anyway, I figure these type of crosses are worth while trying out, just to see what works & what doesn't.
Those bigenerics sound challenging work (*_^)
I use to cross Hechtia rosea with various kinds of Dyckia,
the female Hechtia set seed capsuls, but none of thousands seeds germinate :-(
I found this old post, as I have an O. gurkenii in the garden that now has several adventitious pups along it's spent flower spike (as shown above).
I noted Lisa says above to wait until they are 3-4" across then they should "pop off". As they are terrestrial broms, I was just wondering from other's experience what has been the best propagation method to get the roots growing sucessfully ? I'm presuming they won't have roots when they get to that size, so just a well-drained perlite/seedling mix and a good liquid feed to start them off should see roots develop before potting up or planting them out again ?
Advice anyone ?
I air layer the pups near the end of the spike and when I saw roots I cut off the end of the spike...transplanted the pups individually later on. It took awhile to root the pups farther down the bloom spike.
If you leave them on the stalk long enough you might see a few roots forming, but usually not much, more like a ring of small bumps where the roots will emerge. I usually leave them attached to the mother as long as possible, as there is no advantage to early removal. Unlike basal pups, the plant is not going to produce any more if you take the first ones off, so you might as well let them get as large as possible. Naturally once the stalk starts to shrivel up they'll need to come off, since Mama won't be feeding them anymore. Of course you can remove them before that if you want to, just wait until it definitely looks like a separate little plant rather than part of the inflorescence. If in doubt, wait.
I've never had any trouble getting them to root in our climate, so I just pot them up in regular potting mix. Sometimes I have to wrap a rubber band around the pot to hold the plant down if the recurved leaves seem like they want to push it up and out of the soil. The rubber bands usually fall apart after a week or two, but by then they should be okay.
If you have trouble rooting them in your climate, you can try starting them in straight perlite first. I do that with O. navioides, which tends to be a bit harder to root. The perlite shouldn't be too coarse, maybe a medium grade. A light foliar feed should help too. Once you see roots you can switch to time-release.
Or you can try airlayering them as HDD said, but that seems like a lot of work to me.
Thanks guys for the info ! :-)