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Heliconia bihai Balisier

A robust and easily grown, medium sized species from the Carribean with a large, upright, distichous inflorescence with up to 22 green lipped, bright red, cup shaped bracts.

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germination comments by our visitors
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Also see plant cultivation comments below.

Seeds from this species ...

...difficult to germinate and need up to 1 year to sprout.
Treat like a banana, soak the hard seed for 3 days, keeping the water warm (i pop a plastic dish in to a heated propagator), alternatively you could refresh the water.After soaking, rub the seeds between two pieces of sandpaper.Plant in a mixture of 25% peat, 25% sand, 25% Perlite, 25% vermiculite. The mixture should be sterilised (i pop mine in the microwave). Once cooled, plant the seeds about half 2cm deep, and place in a warm propagator (about 30C). Germination normally takes about 7months - and so far, I have had 60% germination in this way. KEEP HUMID. Plants love humidity, I place place the seedlings in small pots on a gravel tray, covered with a propagator lid.
Submitted on 07/05/2003 by Richard Evans richard@exotic-gardening.co.uk

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plant cultivation comments by our visitors
Also see germination commnets above.

Plants from this species ...

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If you wish to read more on palm cultivation, we highly recommend Ornamental Palm Horticulture by Timothy K. Broschat and Alan W. Meerow, available in our bookshop.

Ratings and comments reflect individual experiences and the views of our visitors. They do not necessarily describe the most appropriate methods, nor are they necessarily valid for all seeds or plants of this species. Germination and plant cultivation success depends on many different factors; nevertheless, these experiences will hopefully aid you in your effort to get the best germination results from our seeds and the best growth results from your plants.

We recommend:
The Encyclopedia of Cultivated Palms

The Encyclopedia of Cultivated Palms
by Robert Lee Riffle, Paul Craft, Scott Zona

2nd edition
Completely revised and updated

Hardcover - 528 pages
11 x 8.5 inches

Our rating:
Suitable for: all

The Encyclopedia of Cultivated Palms is the definitive account of all palms that can be grown for ornamental and economic use. Palms are often underutilized as a result of their unfamiliarity—even to tropical gardeners. To help introduce these valuable plants to a new audience, the authors have exhaustively documented every genus in the palm family.
825 species are described in detail, including cold hardiness, water needs, height, and any special requirements. Generously illustrated with more than 900 photos, including photos of several palm species that have never before appeared in a general encyclopedia, The Encyclopedia of Cultivated Palms is as valuable as an identification guide as it is a practical handbook. Interesting snippets of history, ethnobotany, and biology inform the text and make this a lively catalog of these remarkable plants.

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