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[Fwd: HELP about Houseplants' Origins]

Jean-Charles bourling at hol.fr
Thu May 21 03:17:45 EST 1998

Thomas Merchant wrote:
> On Wed, 20 May 1998 20:52:52 +0200, Jean-Charles <bourling at hol.fr>
> wrote:
> >I'm looking for informations about houseplants' origins!
> >
> >For example : where is Brassaia actinophylla grown? (I don't mean
> >cultivated but what is its natural environment : rainforest, seasonal
> >forest, savan...?)
> >
> >If you know any database or book that lists thoses origins, please let
> >me know !
> >
> >P.S. I Hope my english is good enough to be understood?!
> One book, though not very good for the layman (and I don't know if it
> is still in print) is _Manual of Cultivated Plants_ by L.H. Bailey,
> Macmillan Publishing Co., Inc. 1924, 1949, and 1951
> I could not find _Brassaia actinophylla_ in it, however (funny things
> about scientific names: they are not supposed to change, but they do).
> I could not even find a _Brassica actinophylla_ in it.
> However, in regards to a previous question of yours, the above
> reference gives the origin of _Ficus benjamina, L._  as India. This
> narrows it down a little, but India is a very large country with many
> diverse climates and habitats.
> Hope this helps!
Thanks for your explanations !
Schefflera actinophylla and Ficus benjamina seem to come from seasonal
tropical forests (with over 1500 mm watering during more than 8 month!)
So why are we supposed to let the soil dry before watering again when we
cultivate them as houseplants!
I've received an interesting response from John doe concerning the
soil's structure (very well-drained and organically poor)!
But many other houseplants (Aglaonem commutatum, Anthurium andreanum...)
that come from the same ecosystem, need to have their soil kept in
permanent moisture.
How can this be ?

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