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    • Tracy
      By Tracy
      I have noticed that the emergent leaf color on my Burretikentia koghiensis seems to be more colorful when they open in cooler times of the year, which also coincide with it never getting direct sunlight.  It is similar to the variations in my hibiscus flowers which open with deeper colors in the winter than during summer.  I haven't really paid much attention to see if my Chambeyronia hookeri exhibit this characteristic but thought I would solicit other comments about experience with colorful emergent leaves and variations dependent or correlated to temperature, time of year or sun exposure.

    • TomJ
      By TomJ
      Walking around today I stopped to admire the new colorful leaf.




    • Tracy
      By Tracy
      An Encephalartos princeps is flushing right now and seems to have a couple of aborted or improperly formed new leaves it was trying to push out.  It did something quite similar last year, when a flush ended up aborting everything but three leaves of the flush.  It's not a tiny young plant, as I have plenty of other Encephalartos which push many more leaves at a similar size caudex.  The interesting part is that it seems to be having difficulty on the same side of the caudex, which faces west.  Leaves emerging from the southern, northern and easterly sides are normally formed, but not the west side.  Photos of the plant and closeups of the caudex with the "funky flush".  One year and I would attribute it to a trauma that I might have missed, but two years in a row of a similar phenomena makes me wonder what is going on.



    • Tracy
      By Tracy
      I was out looking at the flush on one of my Cycas thouarsii x cupida, and noticed that the new flush leaflet tips had a significant number of mealybugs on them.  I immediately started thinking about the Cycas scale that has been a problem in so many areas, but fortunately not here in Southern California yet that I am aware.  I went out with the hose and blasted the new leaflets hoping to get rid of most of them, which it did.  Unfortunately some were tenacious and I could see them in a followup about 10 minutes later.  I wasn't real excited to blast it when the foliage is so soft, but felt there were few other options.  It seems that the mealybugs which don't do so well on hardened off Cycas leaves, were having a feast on the still very soft leaflets.
      Two shots before blasting and one after the blasting (you can see the leaflets are a bit wilted after the hard spray).  Anyone else have an issue with this and Cycas?  I haven't seen this on my straight Cycas thouarsii nor have I had problems before with either of the Cycas thouarsii x cupida with mealybugs.



    • Tracy
      By Tracy
      I transplanted an Encephalartos longifolius from my old garden to the new house about 20 months ago.  It was getting too much shade after my neighbor decided to plant a hedge on the edge of his property, so had slowed even before I transplanted it.  This is the first flush of new leaves since the transplant, and I see these black bugs on it.  I blasted it with an insecticidal soap which lists that it kills mites, aphids, and a host of other things.  Hard to tell if its killing them and they are still just stuck on or what is going on, so I took this photo last night.  Anyone able to identify the little guys (sorry, I didn't get out a macro lens and light was a bit dark when I shot this).  I know once they harden off, I'm out of trouble, but worry the leaflets will be deformed if they are sucking them dry when they are still young, soft and pliant.

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