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Plantidote of the Day 2010-12-30

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philodendron

Philodendron giganteum

Giant or elephant ear philodendron

The plan for today was to hike in the wilderness park and shoot some native plants, the kind of things only seen by people who venture off paved surfaces. As it turns out, that will have to happen another time. Here in Waterworld (formerly known as Southern California), rain continues to fall ... and fall ... and fall. The teebee meteorologists predict a few more days of Plantidote crimping weather :-(

In the meantime, during a brief non-rainy interlude, the giant philodendrons were the only things around that didn't look waterlogged and bedraggled. The leaves are enormous, about 3 feet across, and the plants are easily ten feet tall. That stem might look small, but it's actually as big as two of my fingers.

These plants are probably 25 or more years old and are so established they need nothing from me, which means more time to take care of the smaller and/or fussier plants. Compact varieties of philodendrons make excellent house plants, and are easy to grow in low light conditions. Plus, they're good "air cleaners," helpful for removing indoor pollutants and providing clean oxygen, always a good thing to have around.

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Readers, please send twig (twig4now@gmail.com) images and stories for the ongoing Plantidote of the Day series. In exchange, you'll win undying fame in the form of a hat tip! Plants growing in your garden, your house, or neighbor's yard, plants from the forest or farmers' market, plants you preserved, plants you prepared (wine; cider; tea; dried beans), plants you harvested (grains; chantrelles), plants you picked (flowers), plants you dried (herbs), plants you covet or hope to grow someday. Herbal remedies, propagation tips, new varieties, etc.. And if you can, include some solid detail about the plant, too -- a story, the genus and species, or where you got the seeds, or the recipe, or your grandmother gave it to you. Or challenge us with a "Name That Plant" mystery entry ... And please feel free to add corrections and additional information in the comments.

PLANTIDOTE GROUP FORMING: Want to help gather images and take Plantidote of the Day to the next level? Of course you do! Join us by clicking the Join Groups menu item to sign up or email me at the address above!

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