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Epiphytic plant with long pendant, very narrow, succulent and channeled leaves deep green with gray scurf and spiny; inflorescence on reed like stems bearing red cone like fruit. A clumping plant that's great for a hanging basket. Drought-tolerant; suitable for xeriscaping.
The Aechmea is very diversified, hardy, extremely popular, and very easily cultivated in the bromeliad family group. They range in sizes from a very tiny 6 inches, to more than 10 feet in height and 6 feet in diameter. Their foliage colors vary from lime green, yellow, red, burgundy, and black, and incorporates many patterns, spots, stripes, bands, silvering, shadings, and blotches. These patterns often vary form the top of the leaf to the bottom of it. The Aechmea family has large inflorescence and brightly colored, long lasting bracts that holds the magnitude of tiny flowers. Often the colorful berry-like fruits mature for a long time on the flower spike. It's a very healthy, cold and rot resistant plant to grow outdoors fixed in trees, walls, or, in pots in an orchid mix.
Adult plants need a sunny position to become red in the blooming period. In a luminous shade it flowers, but the leaves remain green. The rose bracts persist a long time, and if flowers are pollinated black pointed fruits will appear as shown in the picture. It's curious because, when the plant grows in very shaded locations the leaves become very long, to the point to seem a completely different plant and very elegant indeed, with no weak aspects. However, if it is gradually moved to full sun it blooms and the leaves become red. See Bromeliad page.
Aerangis hariotiana blooms in the late winter to early spring (northern hemisphere) with numerous racemes of densely packed sherbet-orange, strongly night-scented, miniature flowers.
A small, usually pendulous, monopodial epiphyte that is almost stemless. The short stem is hidden by the basal sheaths of closely set leaves. The roots are often flattened, with thin velamen, are green when wet, and have emerald green tips. Aerangis luteo-alba var. rhodosticta has yellowish white flowers with a bright orange-red column.
Cultivated plants should be kept moist during periods corresponding to the wet seasons. They should be allowed to dry slightly between waterings during the dry seasons, but should never dry out completely or be left dry for extended periods.
This species is a large to giant sized, highly variable, hot to cool growing epiphyte. Like related genera, Aerides are best grown in open slatted baskets. Aerides species require ample water, every day in warm climates. 700r higher relative humidity is beneficial although the plants can be grown lower. They require bright filtered light with some direct sunlight in the morning, semi-shade area placement is perfect.