Big leaved tropical plants

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Beschorneria Offshoots

Beschorneria offshoots begin to develop once the flowering stem of Beschorneria yuccoides begins to dry up. After a year or so they are ready for removal. They do not have to be removed but it is an easy way to get new plants, especially considering how few seeds are actually produced during flowering. Left where they are, they soon fatten up and fill up the space left by the flowering rosette, eventually flowering themselves. There also seems to be an element of survival of the fittest as not all the offsets reach maturity.

Base of a Beschorneria flower stem showing the development of offshoots or bulbils

Removing Beschorneria Offshoots

Removed Beschorneria offshoots

  • The offshoots are easy to remove from the stump. Simply snap them off by hand. You can use a knife to help with the levering if you like.
  • Pot up the offshoots individually using a gritty mix. 2 parts loam based compost : 1 part grit sand or perlite is ideal but multipurpose can be used so long as plenty of grit or perlite is mixed in.
  • Place the pots somewhere out of sight and out of mind (These particular plants were left on the bench in a forgotten corner of the greenhouse). Do not water initially as they have no roots.
  • Next, hike the Appalachian Trail or go backpacking in South America. By your return the Beschorneria offshoots will have formed roots.

Root formation on the offsets

  • (During this 3 month period the plants were barely watered - if at all).

Plant removed from pot to display roots

  • A vaguely interesting observation was that the Beschorneria offsets were themselves eager to offset relative to plants grown from seed collected from the same Beschorneria clump.

Beschorneria From Seeds

Beschorneria seed pod contents showing black viable seeds amongst a majority of white duds.

  • Here we see the paltry contents of an ellusive Beschorneria yuccoides seed pod. Black coloured seeds are the viable ones.

Germinated Beschorneria seed

  • Although few in number the seeds germinate easily

A seed grown Beschorneria yuccoides

  • Ultimately producing a much more handsome plant.