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Byblis guehoi

Range: northwest Australia, near city of Broome

Discovered in 2004, and oddly found to be more cold tolerant than other species despite its tropical habitat, this species is endemic to a small region of the Kimberleys near the city of Broome, where it grows in sandy soils in habitats from semi-dry woodland to seasonal wetlands. It may reach more than 100 cm in length (more commonly 15-30), with numerous branches ending in semi-erect 10-15 cm shoots covered in leaves approximately 2-6 cm in length. Coloration is typically green blushing to reddish or purple. Flowers are borne singularly on stalks rising from the leaf axils, and many stalks may be produced at once for a massive profusion of blooms. Flowers may be up to 2 cm across, with obovate petals bearing distinct serrations along the outer edge. Coloration is typically pinkish purple, often with deeper veins just visible, though white flowered forms are also known. This species is distinct in its bushy, branching habit and drier habitat similar to the smaller B. rorida.

Cultivation: Grow in a 3:2 sand/peat soil (or with sphagnum mixed in and as a top dressing) in a large pot, kept moist and moderately humid with warm to hot temperatures year round. Sow seeds on soil surface and treat with smoke or bleach, and grow in strong artificial light to full sun.

Lifespan and reproduction: annual plant. Reproduces by seed from cross-pollinated flowers, and can be propagated via cuttings.

 

 

B. guehoi is one of the few rainbow plant species that I have thus far been lucky enough to grow. Under high light it remains compact and bushy (or as compact as this larger species can be), and readily branches with the capacity to produce dozens of flowers at once. If grown under somewhat lower light however it can take on a very unusual habit, becoming a lanky scrambler like a snotty vine and shooting up flowers along the outer ends of each branch of this vine. My last plant reached proportions of more than a meter in length with all parts added together, and covered  portions of 3 different growing shelves. They are obligate cross-pollinators unfortunately, so in order to produce seeds for a second generation one must have at least 2 genetically distinct plants growing and blooming at once.

Darker B. guehoi flower