Adenium progress, obesums and arabicums

greenclaws UKzone8aNovember 15, 2011

Well after not posting for a while I thought I'd go for it, so here's yet more pics of my efforts so far...firstly my older obesums, sadly, no flower buds this year (one plant budded two years running and all dropped before maturing) but lots of caudex growth on all 4. No signs of dormancy again on the big ones, an odd shed leaf but nothing noticable, my young seedlings always stay in leaf.

Thanks for looking in, Gill from the UK.

the arabicum 'Black Pearl' guys...

..and finally the obesum gang...

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They all look so nice and old are the big guys?
Most of my seedlings all tall and skinny. Must be the U.K. water.

    Bookmark   November 15, 2011 at 9:57AM
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greenclaws UKzone8a

Hi Sharon, the 3 in the green pots were from seeds in Feb 08, the red pot one was May 09, the arabicums June 11 and the obesums July 11. Number 3 and 4 have have had the leader pinched once as they were getting leggy, especially No 4 as it had no signs of laterals until it was decapitated. I have fed them at each watering when I give them a thorough soaking. I let it drain through then tip the run-off back in again, drain and then pour it away. Note the stretch marks on the belly of No4, it got too big for its own skin at one stage and something had to give, lol!! Keeping them drier now, but they are in need of a drink at the moment.
Can't say it's the UK water that's keeping them short & chubby as I've been drinking it for quite a while now and I'm 6ft, haha!
Maybe it's time to nip out the tips of your skinny guys....if you want chubbier bases that is. Maybe try a few and see what results you get. Have you raised them out of the compost a little at each re-pot time? I do it annually and it's surprising what has been going on underground each year come spring.
Thanks for looking in, Gill from the UK.

    Bookmark   November 15, 2011 at 10:31AM
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Hi Gill,

How are you doing? Those are so cute. So far I've only had 3 of the adeniums that we started around the same time bloom and I was only impressed with one of them. I had ignored them for quite a while and some have grown quite lanky. They'll get some serious pruning in the spring. Mine are all beginnig to go dormant. This was the only flower that I liked. The others were a solid reddish pink.

    Bookmark   November 15, 2011 at 11:48AM
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greenclaws UKzone8a

Hey there Karyn, am fine thanks, hope you are too! Wish mine will flower at some point, was really hopeful for this Sept as that was when plant #1 budded 2 years in succession and then dropped them all, but have no signs on any yet. Seems they decided to fatten up their little bellies and extend their arms instead.
Like your flower btw. The seeds for plants 1/2/3 were sold as solid pink obesums. I know I later bought some 'Noble Concubine' and 'Star of Luck' seeds but mixed the labels up and plant 4 is one of those. I since found out they don't come exactly true from seeds though, so could be anything...or nothing. Any flower would be a bonus for me here!
Best wishes, Gill from the UK.

    Bookmark   November 15, 2011 at 3:28PM
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Gosh, your plants look like they just got home from the beauty parlor. They are so perfectly groomed and petite that they look like bonsai plants without the wires. It's cool that they branched when you pinched the top. A few of them together would look like a forest! Good job!

    Bookmark   November 16, 2011 at 5:38PM
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Gill, I love to look at your adenium, and arabicum small ponsai type plants. They are beautiful. They look very good without bloom, but I hope they will bloom their head off for you soon. Let say, next year, keep your finger across and keep hoping.
My baby adenium grow so tall, but I didn't want them grow that way, I want caudexs to grow big like your.


    Bookmark   November 16, 2011 at 8:02PM
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greenclaws UKzone8a

Thank you all for your kind words, it's a great encouragement to me.
Penny, 2 of the the baby Black Pearls already have little stubs of branches forming now, lets hope they do well.
Marie, I will admit to be very envious of your adenium collection as I think they are fantastic. The fact that you rarely see plants for sale here in the UK (I have only seen one so far) makes me even more determined to do well with seed sown plants as it's my only method of obtaining tham.
The Black Pearls are said to be fast growers, so hopefully, come spring they should put on some good growth. As you say...fingers crossed!

What I would really like to do is to have the courage to root prune the big guys severely and put them in proper bonsai type shallow pots, but I'm a whimp! The thought of doing that fills me with dread, but I think they would look better and maybe even grow better do you think? Spring would be the best time to do it when they are growing strongly, so I have plenty of time to pluck up enough courage between now and then.
Regards, Gill from the UK.

    Bookmark   November 17, 2011 at 10:00AM
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ladylotus(Z3/4 ND)


Your adeniums look really healthy. Perhaps you can take one of them and do a severe root prune and place in a shallow pot. See if it grows well, if so do another until you have each of them trimmed and in shallow pots.

Good luck.

    Bookmark   November 17, 2011 at 9:13PM
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greenclaws UKzone8a

If only I could find or was clever enough to make some of those pots that Mr.Caudex has for his fat plants! That really is a bad case of 'pot envy' syndrome! The 4 largest appear to have a good root structure as they have all got white roots poking out of the drainage holes. I did buy a shallow one holed bonsai pot earlier this summer but when I got it home it looked far too small even for plant #4. I need to look at some bonsai sites as I'm sure there must be some info on the ratio of the sizes of plant to pot somewhere.
LadyL, good point your raise there but would you wait till spring seeing as...
1/ they are in full leaf
2/ show no signs of going dormant
3/ still put out the odd leaf
4/ have never yet gone dormant
5/ its going to get colder here before it gets warmer
Any thoughts on this are appreciated as always, thanks...Gill from the UK.

    Bookmark   November 18, 2011 at 9:52AM
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greenjay(Zone 6)

All beautifully grown plants, very much like the first one !
Kudos !

    Bookmark   November 18, 2011 at 10:13AM
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bikerdoc5968 Z6 SE MI

These all look so great... When the weather warms up here in Michigan, I want to try my hand at growing some from seed. Any particular vendor in the USA for seeds? Any tips as to type of media for the seeds, watering, etc? Then once they germinate, what next? And "root pruning", what's that all about? Just want to be as successful as I can out of the box. Thanks

    Bookmark   November 20, 2011 at 10:58AM
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greenman28 NorCal 7b/8a

Hey, Gill!

If you re-pot in a shallow container, the growth will slow down considerably.
I'd wait to bonsai them until they have the size and the branch structure you want.


    Bookmark   November 20, 2011 at 11:24AM
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greenclaws UKzone8a

Greenjay, thanks, glad you like my efforts so far, my fav is #3.

Bikerdoc, hope someone from the USA comes in to help you find a good seed supplier as I'm from the UK. As for the germinating media I tend to use a 50/50 mix of cactus and general purpose potting compost. The seeds need to be soaked in warmish water for 4 hours or so before lying them on the surface of your pots and covering with just a sprinkling of mix. Keep them moist but not saturated and in the mid 20'sC. If fresh, they should pop in a matter of a few days, mine come through in 5/7 usually. They grow quickly once through and need to be kept moist for several weeks after sprouting. When around and inch or so high and with a couple of sets of true leaves I re-pot mine individually into 30% cactus mix, 30% potting compost and 30% horticultural needs to be very fast draining. I let mine dry out before I water again which can be every other day even here in the UK! Give them as much light & warmth as poss.
Keep them growing year round for 2 years if poss...I find young seedlings don't go dormant anyway and the bigger the plant is going into winter, the more reserves it has to go through a dormant period.
When older/bigger, in summer treat as and watered often but remember, don't let them sit in water or get waterlogged or the roots rot.
In winter keep drier like a cactus....if they go dormant and loose leaves hardly water them at all.
Cold and/or constantly wet and soggy feet are killers, the roots and caudex can rot easily.
As for root pruning, well I'm not the one to tell you much about that as I haven't got to that stage with mine...yet! Good luck, hope this helps, it's what I do with mine anyway.

Josh, thanks for the heads up on the root pruning... I will certainly now wait a while before I chop them as I'd certainly like them to put on some more growth yet.
Regards, Gill from the UK.

    Bookmark   November 21, 2011 at 6:45PM
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