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Forum for Epiphytic Myrmecophytes

Stone Jaguar

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About Stone Jaguar

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    Guatemala & Bay Area, California

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  1. I have collected Columnea crassifolia on many occasions in Chiapas, México and Guatemala. It is invariably found in upper foothill or middle elevation cloud forest. Never, not once, found it associated with ants. I agree with Aurélien's view that someone almost certainly mixed genera and confused with Codonanthopsis crassifolia, a VERY different-looking, near obligate Central American myrmecophyte in nature. Columnea linearis is a lowland tropical forest species that rarely makes it to low elevation Caribbean versant cloud forest in southern Central America. This is an example
  2. Good afternoon, Aurélien. Thanks! I am currently working with Juan José Castillo on two equally remarkable new Chamaedorea species from northern Central America as well. It is a shame that Fred Muller's amazing photos of the infructescences were not used in that Phytotaxa article. None of he heather like Neotropical ericoids are myrmecophytic as far as I am aware. I have several high Andean disterigmas here and they all seem pretty straightforward. Congratulations on your new displays! Keep safe, J
  3. Thanks to both for kind comments. Frank, hopefully we see greater interest in growing carefully thought out multispecies mounts by myrmecophyte collectors. The orchid growing community have been sold "species sticks" by a few US nurseries for some time but they are usually just a hodgepodge of species tied on a manzanita branch and priced 3X. I have already shown some mounts I did in Guatemala with Myrmecodia tuberosa and some Malesian Dischidia spp. about 12 years back, but there is clearly a great deal of room for improvement on my efforts. Derrick, thanks very much for catching th
  4. Howdy: As we all know, this forum showcases an amazing variety of Old World myrmecophytes in nature and cultivation, yet the Neotropical forms have been a bit neglected over the years. Due to an immense amount of confusion about the identities of some ant-associated orchid species, as well as the fact that some ferns, bromeliads and cacti appear to be obligate myrmecophytes in some regions but not in others, makes writing about Neotropical ant plants a fraught endeavor for those without boots-on-the-ground experience with tropical American ant gardens and their plants. I have been to
  5. Hi, Derrick. These Ceratostema spp are epiphytic, but many others grow as terrestrials or hemiepiphytes. I have not observed EFNs on those terrestrial forms that I grow. J
  6. Yes, I agree that the lignotuber looks very much like a potato. With age, the lignotubers of quite a few Neotropical Ericaceae can become massive. I have posted an image on my website of a caudex on a wild Macleania insignis the size of a bullock's heart. Flowers remain in perfect condition for more than three weeks and are quite substantial in weight and substance. A few more opened this week. The black inner tips of the corollas are remarkable. J
  7. As everyone on who reads this forum will know, ant-plant associations are everywhere around us, but are particularly evident in the tropics. Forum members are also well aware that MANY surprising discoveries in this loose group have turned up of late with - no doubt - many more to come. A number of Neotropical blueberries (Ericaceae) are currently very popular with exotic plant collectors because of their handsome foliage and beautiful flowers. Recently I discovered that several epiphytic species of the genus Ceratostema from Colombia, Ecuador and Perú also possess well-developed extraflo
  8. Great shots, and excellent observations on this. Just encountered very conspicuous extrafloral nectaries on the abaxial surfaces of the leaves on an apparently undescribed epiphytic Neotropical blueberry (probably a Ceratostema; hasn't flowered yet for confirmation). Ant + plant relationships are everywhere we look for them. J
  9. Good day to all. One of the most appealing aspects of hydnophytines are their extraordinary, varied, weird, eccentric, bizarre, unbelievable, etc. plant forms. More than one grower has trialed them in bonsai pots in the past, but I thought I'd give it a go with a lot of (mostly) larger-sized material. I have provided a link below to an article I just posted on my website on bonsai ant plants. As Frank has been kind enough to mention above, all five genera are illustrated there that are displayed in this style. https://www.exoticaesoterica.com/whats-new Click on the article link
  10. Two years and a half years after the cross-section above was made, I came across the same plant today when I was looking for larger candidates in need of repotting. My experience is that the attractive visuals of sectioned hydnophytine caudexes are largely obliterated within 12-18 months from cuts so some thought should be invested in whether and where to make stem cuts for display purposes. Note that I tried to select an image with the same scale and orientation for comparative purposes. As unlikely as this sounds, I think you could end up with a fairly normal looking plant within f
  11. Thank you for the heads-up, Frank! An excellent resource and, obviously, much to quibble with. It is clear that the authors have taken a very "safe" route and only accepted species with very clear major morphological differences. The placement of the species treated into natural "Groups" is a very useful development. While this treatment is not necessarily new, it is very well fleshed-out in the paper. The sinking of all Philippine Hydnophytum spp. into H. formicarum and H. moseleyanum may warrant closer scrutiny down the road. J
  12. It's interesting to see such remarkable Hydnophytum spp. from this island. I'll add another. This is obviously part of the Ovatum group published online today by Jebb and Huxley, but its stems and leaves differ from the three Malukan species shown, and the flowers differ from the illustration of a corolla of Hydnophytum tortuosum from the Papuan mainland. Despite floral differences, I assume that this species is closest to H. tortuosum. This is a massively-caudexed species, a seedling of which was collected more than a decade ago by an anonymous friend in SE Asia. In 2016, a small,
  13. As far as I can tell, nothing in Huxley & Jebb descriptions match Andreas' plant exactly. Myrmecodia albertisii ssp. incompta seems the best fit other than the leaves as described and illustrated in Fig. 15D. The authors do, however note that accessions from Normanby "...differ in leaf size, but are closely related." Last night I had completely forgotten that I have a compot of M. "tuberosa" Siasiada here at the house. I checked the leaves today and they match Andreas' plant shown above although they are probably a year behind his and don't have spines yet. J
  14. Greetings. As was originally noted, Derrick appears to have come across several remarkable Myrmecodia spp. growing in sympatry at Siasiada. Possibilities among described species seem to be Myrmecodia platytyrea, M. albertisii, M. (tuberosa) papuana and M. schlechteri. Frank left a very useful map of probable candidates posted above. I have a couple of reasonably large young plants from this locality that I'm growing in California that don't fit perfectly into the theoretical "mix" from the area, nor do they match the plant Andreas shows above, that seems to be lacking clypeoli (
  15. Stone Jaguar


    Hi, Derrick. Thanks very much for providing a link to your FB forum for those interested in this group of plants. Sadly, the evidence thus far suggests that most of the small community growing hydnophytines and other myrmecophytes is not a particularly vocal one. Certainly there appears to be more participation online by people who interact with them in the field (i.e. enthusiasts located in Malesia and some foreign researchers) and that that community does indeed seem to prefer engagement on Fakebook. As you noted, I specifically avoid that site. I find the founder a dishonest hypocrite
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