Calathea and Cordyline

The TPIE (Tropical Plant Industry Exhibition) is an annual trade fair showcasing the latest trends in everything floral. This year’s event took place in Ft. Lauderdale on Jan.22-24 and many of the award-winning plants were on display a few weeks later at Gardenfest.

I already showed you a beautiful new introduction I DIDN’T buy, but neglected to share the one I did…try as I might, I couldn’t leave this unique foliage plant behind:

Calathea Fusion White, 2/12/14

“Two” pretty??!! 🙂

In fact, I liked it so much, I bought two!

Calathea ‘Fusion White’ is a product of Biostok Foliage, a Florida nursery specializing in micro-propagation. This showy plant features white/green marbled leaves with pale purple undersides.  It picked up three awards at TPIE:  Favorite New Foliage Plant, Most Unusual Single Plant Specimen, and a “Cool Product” award.

In general, Calatheas thrive in humid, moist environments with indirect lighting.  Although mine would do well outside under a shady tree, I bought them to replace indoor dracaenas that had gotten a little bit leggy. (FYI: the dracaenas have been hard pruned and planted inground, hopefully to regrow, but that’s a post for another day. 🙂 )

Although not new for 2014, a variegated Cordyline–commonly known as Ti plant–also caught my eye and opened my wallet:

Cordyline White Baby Doll, 2/12/14

“White Baby Doll” Ti is one of the many dozens of Cordyline fruticosa varieties ideal for medium light situations. As the plant matures, its green, lance shaped leaves develop dramatic cream-colored striations.

Ti are hardy in Zones 10-12, preferring temps above 55° F and very humid air to keep the leaf tips from drying out and turning brown.  When planted inground, the canes have an upright growth habit, reaching 10 feet high with a 3- to 4-foot spread.

Cordyline White Baby Doll and Calathea Fusion White, 2/12/14

I haven’t decided if my new Ti will join the Calatheas indoors, but I know for sure I’ll be growing it in a container ➡ even on the cusp of zone 10, winter temps can dip below freezing; White Baby Doll may need indoor “swaddling” next January!

For more info on Ti varieties check out the photo gallery at the International Cordyline Society website.

Until next time….

🙂 🙂 🙂

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