This plant has been sold in Asia under the name ‘versicolor red and black’, however, I have not seen any evidence of flowers to confirm this. It is a newer species to cultivation, whatever it is. It does resemble versicolor in the compact growth habit, but it grows its rhizome in more of a trailing way than other versicolor forms. The leaves maintain their beautiful color, getting darker with maturity. The new growth is a bright reddish-pink, as are the […]
There are at least three forms of ningmingensis, and I believe this one is the type locality. It slightly resembles B. arachnoidea in the leaf patterns. It is a slower growing species, and of the three ningmingensis types, which all display somewhat drastically different growth habits, this is the one in the middle in terms of difficulty and growth rate. The dark form is the fastest growing of the three, with var. bella being the more difficult and slow-growing in my […]
Begonia darthvaderiana was discovered in 2013 near West Kalimantan. It slightly resembles Begonia chlorosticta in its growth, and it’s temperamental nature. It has been making its way into the hobby gradually over the past year, and I am happy to now be growing this species. This species should be grown in terrarium culture only, not an open-air environment. Like many of the more sensitive Begonias, care should be taken not to leave water standing on the leaves, but rather, moistening […]
B. metallicolor is in the Petermannia section, and is native to Padawan, Sarawak, Borneo. It resembles B. nagaensis in the iridescence, but the flowers differ. Like B. darthvaderiana, metallicolor is found in low elevation dipterocarp forest. It is a rather small species, growing to just under 12 inches, but it often stays smaller. The leaves are strongly iridescent and can appear blue, teal, green, and even purple. The plant below seems to be doing well, but also has some sort […]
This Southeast Asian native forms hard succulent leaves that fix themselves flat to a wood surface. If grown in bright light, the leaves are more reddish. It can be grown as a house plant or vivarium plant. If planted in a vivarium, it should be allowed to dry out between waterings. The flowers of imbricata are very small, a pale creamy-yellow, however, this particular plant has pink flowers. So, it’s ID is a mystery for now.
This is a Begonia collected in Jalau, a small town in Sarawak (Borneo). It has been making the rounds in Asia for the past year or two but has not been sold in number in the United States. It is a taller species that is prone to falling over when it reaches a certain height (the magic number for my largest plant is 14″), with only a thin stem to support the top-heavy plant. I’ve only had it about six […]
Lemmaphyllum microphyllum is a widespread species, occurring throughout China, Korea, India, Japan, the Philippines, and Asiatic Islands. It is a wonderful epiphytic fern, whose fronds only reach about .5 inch. Fertile fronds will reach about 2″ but are very narrow. It especially loves to grow on tree-fern, but cork also works well. It will grow in a pot so long as the substrate is well-drained. Like many small fern species, it is slow-growing (but not difficult).
Some of the newly available Asian species to the US are Elatostema species, a rarely seen genus in the terrarium hobby. This one is from Borneo, and so far has been an easy, albeit, slow species. The leaves have a sticky texture, although no secretions are given off, and no discernible residue is left on the skin. It’s intensely corrugated leaves have reached about 4″ long thus far, but I’ve not had it more than a year so I cannot […]