The Eagle Has Landed

“The Eagle Has Landed”, a copyrighted post, was written for my WordPress blog called Always Growing by Jan in Covington, Louisiana 

 

The Eagle has landed?  Well, not quite.  But, it is a rather momentous occasion for me.  My bird of paradise has finally bloomed.  After years.  At least six years, maybe more.  I bought it as a one gallon plant and did every thing I read to get that plant to bloom.  I kept it pot bound, I kept it fertilized, I kept it watered and in full sun.  Nothing.  Recently, I read that it had to have a certain number of leaves before it bloomed.  (Twelve, which is why it is sometimes called the Apostle plant.)  Then, I started counting leaves.  I would drive past homes where there were birds of paradise blooming, and they were in SHADE!  I was so frustrated.  I finally told my plant I was tired of taking care of it, tired of dragging it inside every winter, and tired of no blooms.

 

My lecture must have done some good because soon there was a bud.

 

 

I was so excited last Monday when I saw it.  Every evening I went out to check to see if it had opened.  When we were getting thunderstorms, I worried about it.  I don’t think I could have stood for it to finally bloom and then have it destroyed by a rain storm.

 

Today, as I sloughed around the yard checking out how the garden looked after the .5 inches of rain we had last night, I suddenly saw that my bird of paradise bud had opened.  Hallelujah!

 

 

It is only one flower and not fully opened yet, but at least I know that the darn thing does bloom.  I guess I now know what a late bloomer really means.

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11 Comments

  1. August 17, 2008 at 7:26 pm

    Plants can be so stubborn sometimes, it’s funny that when you finally had given up it decided to bloom. Gorgeous bloom, maybe it was worth the wait? 🙂

  2. Nancy Bond said,

    August 17, 2008 at 8:54 pm

    How beautiful and how exotic! Well done!

  3. Jan said,

    August 18, 2008 at 4:22 am

    Oh, it was worth the wait, perennialgardenlover. I think that talking to I gave it is what really worked.

    Thanks, Nancy. It is very beautiful and is a stand out in that section of the garden, which is nice at this time of year.

  4. Randy said,

    August 18, 2008 at 5:54 am

    Jan,
    You have a lot more patience than me! I don’t think I could have waited that long!

  5. Phillip said,

    August 18, 2008 at 8:11 am

    Jan, I have always heard that they take 7 years to bloom!

  6. linnie said,

    August 18, 2008 at 9:00 am

    I can certainly relate to this post Jan. I purchased a Pride of Barbados last year and it has grown to quite a large size. I have seen at least three plants blooming in my area in the last three months. Mine is growing but no flowers, no buds. Maybe I could use some of your mojo in getting a stubborn plant to bloom.

    Linnie in Destrehan, LA 8/18/08

  7. Curmudgeon said,

    August 18, 2008 at 12:05 pm

    That’s a long time to wait! How beautiful and exotic it looks. We’ve waited 4 years, and still counting on some, for trilliums to bloom in our garden so definitely understand your impatience and excitement.

  8. Brenda Kula said,

    August 18, 2008 at 2:25 pm

    Oh, it’s lovely! I’ve never had one, but I was thinking shade for some reason. Don’t know why that comes to mind. Probably thinking of something else…
    Brenda

  9. Jan said,

    August 18, 2008 at 7:03 pm

    Randy, I don’t know if it was patience or just habit that kept me taking care of that plant for so long, but now that it has bloomed, I’m glad I did.

    Phillip, I had read that it took several years to bloom, after I bought it. If I had known it took that long, I don’t know if I would have purchased it.

    Linnie, I’ll send some threats to your plant via ESP. Let me know if it works.

    Curmudgeon, I hope this is the year for stubborn plants to bloom and that your trilliums will show flowers. Maybe, you need to threaten them as I did my plant.

    Thanks, Brenda, it is lovely, isn’t it. I think these can take some shade since I have seen them blooming in light shade in other people’s yard. If I had to do it over again, I would have bought a bigger plant so as to have flowers sooner.

  10. spookydragonfly said,

    August 20, 2008 at 4:00 am

    Looks like it was well worth the wait…that is one pretty bloom..it’s one of my mothers’favorites…I wouldn’t have the patience to wait so long!

  11. Jan said,

    August 20, 2008 at 4:40 am

    It is pretty, isn’t it? Now that it has bloomed, I am expecting more flowers in the future, so I guess it was worth the wait. Besides, I do like leaves of the plant even without the flowers. It is avery architectual and stately looking plant once it gets to be a good size.


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