Plant availability

A0ifeMarch 31, 2013

I've assembled all of the basics for a good-sized bottle garden project with my granddaughter. Everything, that is, except the plants. Where do I get those? And do I start with seeds, or "tots"? Here's a list of suggestions I copied:

ï§ Arrowhead Vine (Syngonium podophyllum varieties)
ï§ Artillery Plant (Pilch microphylla)
ï§ Brake Fern (Pteris cretica varieties)
ï§ Button Fern (Pcilae)
ï§ Calathea (C. ornata)
ï§ Creeping Fig (Ficus manila minima)
ï§ Croton (Coclittenni variegation pienon varieties)
ï§ Earth Stars
ï§ Emerald Ripple (Peperomict cciperata)
ï§ Frosted Somerila (S. margaritacea)
ï§ Good Luck Plant (Cordvline termincilis)
ï§ Ivy (Hedera helix varieties)
ï§ Lady Fern (A thyriurn Felix-femina `MinutissimaâÂÂ)
ï§ Maidenhair Fern (Adianturn cciptlinsveneris)
ï§ Maidenhair Spleenwort (Aspienium trichornanes)
ï§ Mosaic Plant (Fittonia ctrgyroneura)
ï§ Moss Ferns (Selaginella species)
ï§ Mother of Thousands (Saxifraga)
ï§ Parlour Palm (Neanthe bella)
ï§ Peperomia (P. caperata)
ï§ Marantas,
ï§ Polka Dot Plant
ï§ Prayer Plant (Marcintu leuconeura)
ï§ Ribbon Plant (Dracaena sanderana)
ï§ Stromanthe (S. canabilis)
ï§ Sweet Flag (Acorus grananeus variegatus)
ï§ Watermelon Peperomia (Peperomia argyreia)

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paul_(z5 MI)

That would have to be one heck of a "gi-normous" bottle for most of those plants to even be a consideration, unfortunately. Most get far too large and far too quickly to be useful. How large a bottle are you talking here?

Your next issue is will be to research the conditions required by the various plants you are considering vs the conditions you expect to provide. Plants like the Cordvline require high light and good air circulation -- something you will not be able to do in a bottle.

You might check out sites like Black Jungle or Josh's Frogs for plants that will stay smaller and can be grown in moist conditions.

    Bookmark   April 1, 2013 at 2:24PM
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Thanks, Paul. It's a good-sized glass jug, maybe 4 gallons, as you can see. I'm going to start by putting sea glass on the bottom, then a mix of GrowStone and coir. Kind of winging it. Then I'll go to the sites you recommended, and start with a few plants at a time.

Thanks again. Greg

    Bookmark   April 5, 2013 at 11:41AM
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paul_(z5 MI)

Nice jug! Definitely too small for many of the plants you mentioned previously so it was wise to ask before jumping in. Keep in mind too, that (assuming you wish to use this jug again in the future) larger growing woodier plants will be a nightmare to try to dig out of there. I would suggest looking for plants that will remain under 3 or 4 inches tall.

Selaginella would grow very well in there I suspect as will some of the tinier ferns.

    Bookmark   April 5, 2013 at 5:25PM
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Hello Paul ��"

I don't keep this in the sun, this was just for photo purposes.

Moving slowly, as you can see. Here's an update: jewel orchids (getting a bit leggy as they turn to the light);sinningia, bacopa, ficus, selaginella, and biophytum (mentioned last because it flopped over and died after about a month.)

Still some unoccupied territory. Grateful for any suggestions. You mentioned the tinier ferns ��" got a name?


    Bookmark   August 4, 2013 at 11:43AM
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paul_(z5 MI)

First I would need to know, if you are hoping for a fern that looks like a fern? Of the ferns with "ferny"/frond-like foliage, you will pretty much be out of luck. All the ones I know of that are easily available will likely get too tall for your bottle and -- assuming they like the environment you are providing -- will absolutely "run amok". Once they get going they will takeover the bottle and crush out any other plant life. The only exception height-wise might be something like Nephrolepsis exaltata 'Fluffy Ruffles'. Some of the clones of that do stay fairly short. However, it will take over the bottle in short order it finds the conditions appealing. I do seem to recalling seeing some rather neat, small, ferny types in my internet wanderings, but they were quite expensive. So then too there is the question of how much is too much to spend, IYO?

Now there are ferns that look very little like anything most of us would ever think of as being a fern. The majority have a vining habit and rather "normal" roundish generic plant type leaves. Many types of Pyrossia have this trait. Again, if it is happy, it will likely try to take over.

Many of the nifty more mini-types that I have heard of but never tried are going to be on the expensive side. Elaphoglossum peltatum is neat plant but often sells for around $18 or more for a plant in a 2" pot.

    Bookmark   August 4, 2013 at 5:29PM
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I'm not saying that price is no object, but this is a project I'm really interested in, and I don't mind paying $18 or more for a few plants. I'd really like to know about some of the "nifty more mini- types" that you've heard of.

As you can see, I'm going slowly, seeing what works. Do you have an opinion about why that biophytum browned up and died on me? It looked great! Just like a little palm tree. Everything around it was doing great. I might try it again, in another spot. Any thoughts?.

Thanks so much for your continuing interest in this.

    Bookmark   August 5, 2013 at 8:02PM
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