Jim Irvin has a knack with Cryptanthus, (as well as other bromeliads!), and has produced numerous first-class hybrids. This is one of which he can be proud. This hybrid, a cultivar of ‘Sweet Tooth’ x ‘Ice Age,’ and a grex mate to ‘Very Cold Tooth,’ is a dark brown, almost black plant with closely spaced cross banding of silver trichomes with dense silver white scurf underneath. The inch-wide leaves are long and graceful, undulating at the margins in a symmetrical rosette.
x Enchotia 'Ruby'
(Encholirium horridum x Hechtia rosea (macdougallii) (spineless form) by Ray Lemieux. The first ever in this nothogenera! A large grower to about 5 feet across and 3 feet tall in a full rosette of about 150 leaves. The leaves are 2.25 inches at the base, tapering to a point, almost spineless, with a few random small spurs and average 45 inches long. The inflorescence is 5 feet tall, 1.5 inches thick at the base with 32 branches and is red with red bracts. The flowers have red sepals and red petals. The plant is a spectacular specimen for landscape, blushing bright red in strong light.
Pitcairnia heterophylla 'Red'
This is a very widespread species that can be found from Mexico to Peru and across to Venezuela. A variable species which commonly grows on cliffs as a terrestrial, but can grow on rocks as a lithophyte, and in trees as an epiphyte. The plant has two dimorphic leaf forms, one a thin green blade which is deciduous and one which is a short, stiff, spiky leaf which looks more like a large spine.
When the plant goes dormant, the spiky leaves protect the bulbous base of the plant and flowers emerge on a very short scape before the new foliage appears. Flowers are typically red, occasionally white and sometimes pink. An easy to grow species that likes abundant moisture when growing, but much less in the dormant season.
Neoglaziovia variegata 'Pink Clone'
A pink colored clone of this uniquely different terrestrial bromeliad that occured in a batch of seed from our own stock. Tall and narrow with succulent, banded foliage that more closely resembles a form of Sansevieria than most bromeliads. The foliage is normally dark blackish-green with bold silver banding, but this clone has a distinct pink tint. Look at the photos below with a comparison between the regular form and the pink clone. As with the normal clone, the inflorescence is a red spike with berry-like flowers with red bracts and violet petals. As a container plant it rarely exceeds 30 inches tall and can be grown in a 6 to 10 inch pot.
Cryptanthus 'Rita Padden'
A cultivar of [‘Trailblazer’ x (‘Orange ‘n Rose’ x ‘Deep Purple’)] by Carole Richtmeyer. A very broad leaved plant in an arching, rosette shape that flattens when blooming.
The leaves are brownish-green with green splashes, lightly dusted with trichomes on the leaf bases. Produces offsets on short stolons.
Hechtia lanata x myriantha
Both parents of this Ray Lemieux cross of Hechtia lanata x myriantha have some interesting characteristics that should express themselves when the plants grow out. The seed parent, H. lanata, has broad, scurfy, twisting and curling leaves in habitat, which is a tropical desert environment on nutrient poor cliffs.
In cultivation, seedlings of this species tend to have straighter foliage, at least here in sea-level Florida. The pollen parent, H. myriantha, is a giant grower, perhaps the largest of all Hechtia species. Anecdotal stories report that this plant can reach the size of a VW Beetle! The intent of this cross was to produce a large growing hybrid with twisted foliage and silvery scurf. Only time will tell if that will happen.
Cryptanthus 'Red Eye Gravy'
A cultivar of ‘Sunburst’ x (‘Red Cabbage’ x ‘Pele’) by Carole Richtmyer.
A fairly large grower with broad leaves in a symmetrical star shape. The color is mottled green with red highlights, especially up the center of the leaves, becoming overall reddish-pink with stronger light.
Orthophytum lymanianum SEL1982-0436
A species confusingly similar to O. lemei and toscanoi. The plant has very stiff, spiny, silvery leaves in an open rosette. The leaves are somewhat channeled and recurve downward. When in bloom, the inflorescence forms a straight spike with leaf-like scape bracts and numerous strobilate branches of green, with tiny white flowers.
We first obtained this species from the Marie Selby Botanical Gardens with a accession number of SEL1982-0436. It was originally collected by Alvim Seidel at Pilao Arcado, Bahia, Brazil.
x Enchotia 'Pink Ruby'
A pink flowering cultivar of Ray Lemieux’s (Encholirium horridum x Hechtia rosea (macdougallii) (spineless form). This is from the same grex as ‘Ruby’ and is part of the first ever in this nothogenera. A large grower that can reach over 4 feet across in a full rosette of about 150 leaves. The leaves are 2.25 inches at the base, tapering to a point, almost spineless, with a few random small. The inflorescence can be over 4 feet tall and can have 30 branches or more and is light red. The flowers have light red sepals and pink petals. The plant is a spectacular specimen for landscape, blushing bright red in strong light.