Epiphytic Fuchsia species

Dennis Szeszko dszeszko@gmail.com
Thu, 13 Jul 2006 11:54:03 PDT

You are right.  I did an online database search of herbarium specimens and
it seems that the species I saw is almost assuredly F. fulgens because F.
decidua has never been collected in Mexico State.

>Dennis,  Your sighting, if it had red and green flowers, is probably
>fulgens.  The F. decidua had red tubular/funnelform flowers in
handingclusters.  Only found >them growing in the moss on oak trunks, along
>escarpment of the Sierra Minatlan, where the fog/clouds would pour over
>irrigating and air conditioning the mountain in moisture and coolth.
>Explored nearby rocky cliffs, which were plastered with lithophytes, but
>didn't see the Fuchsia there.  Fuchsia fulgens and F. decidua seem closely


A check of nomenclature leads me to believe that you have F. boliviana and
not F. boliviensis.  This may be why Carolyn was unable to find images of
the plant that you describe.

>I saw your interest in the epiphytic Fuchsias, which i have also, but I
>a species, F. boliviensis,


I think that Fuchsia fulgens would probably survive brief periods of frost
in the early hours of the morning before things warmed up again.  The area
where they grow is subject to occasional frost in the months of December and
January.  However, the cover of Oak leaves protects them to an extent, and
the fact that they live off of the ground as an epiphyte means that they
would not be exposed to the coldest air which would be found at the base of
the tree.  To help you get a sense of temperatures, the orchids that grow in
that area are classified as requiring Cool-to-Intermediate growing
conditions.  Joe, you are right when you say that the heat and humidity in
Houston would probably kill the plant before the cold temperatures would get
a chance to cause freeze damage.  I don't think that the plant could take
sustained temperatures above 90 degrees.  I think that people in Northern
California or the Pacific Northwest would best be able to approximate the
natural growing conditions of this plant.

>I'm very curious about the cold tolerance of Fuchsia spp. growing at 1800 m
>on lava.

Mary Sue was kind enough to create a page on the Wiki for Fuchsia, so I'm
going to post a picture of the plant's tuberous roots.  The plant I
collected is sprouting new growth from the tips of the branches and with
some luck I should have flowers in about 3 months or so.  At that time, I
will update the wiki with pictures of the flowers.



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