Wednesday, April 2, 2008

Exciting day!

It was a busy day in the greenhouses and public areas again today! The feel of spring is definately in the air and the plants are really starting to perk up after all the dark winter weather.

We have been transplanting the seedlings for the summer show and spacing out the pots of annuals on the benches. Most of the first group of tulips in the Sunken Garden were replaced with the second set of tulips today. The tulips last about 10 days per group and there are three groups that are used in the room. A total of 10,000 bulbs are planted in the Sunken Garden spring flower show.

A few of the Hort staff went to the tear out on Monday night of the Macy's Floranova Spring Flower Show and brought back two van loads of tropical plants for the Conservatory and Zoo landscapes. We are busy finding homes in the greenhouses for all these lovely plants. Thanks to Mike Hibbard at Bachman's for thinking of us!

And the Amorphophallus titanum keeps growing taller! We are still days from the actual (and hoped for) bloom of this plant. It is now 24 1/2" tall. So it has now passed the height of the smallest blooming plant that has been recorded (a 1 foot, 11.5 inch plant bloomed in 2003 in Queensland, Australia).

It is difficult to try and anticipate what this plant is going to do! We are really enjoying each day as it changes and grows. But there is alot of anxiety associated with it's growth. It has already been 2 weeks since the inflorescence became apparent and there is still no burgandy color visible anywhere on the spathe. There are already some brown spots on the spathe that may be due to low humidity or physical damage. It is in a greenhouse at the moment but starting Thursday morning, the hope is to have it placed in the Parlor area of the Conservatory. The "Corpse Cam" was installed today and is already showing the empty spot where the pot will be sitting soon! This anticipated move has alot of folks stressing! There are more questions than answers at this time. The biggest concern is if we move the plant into the Parlor and the conditions are not optimal, will it stop in it's development of the inflorescence? We guess that we will all learn the answer to this question together!

We are not sure of the actual date of the opening of the spathe but will keep you updated as the event approaches. Enjoy the show!