Bloom Watch

December 16, 2019.  We’ve just experienced the last 2019 full moon cycle, and I’m now experiencing my first Dracaena bloom watch.  You may know Dracaena by her common name – corn plant.  She’s a popular houseplant, needing little maintenance, little light, asking only that you periodically cut her back and replant the cuttings.  My back porch is full of her long, floppy, dark green leaves.  I received a cutting from a corn plant my Aunt Mary Beth left behind in 1990, taken by my sister for her office, divided multiple times. The single stalk I took in (roughly 10 years ago) has evolved to five plants in three large pots.  In all that time, I never knew it could BLOOM!  A little over a week ago, we woke to find one of the five had sprouted a long bloom stalk overnight.

Fascinated, I went googling to find my plant’s real name is Dracaena Fragranz Massangeana and she does occasionally bloom – a powerful fragrance and a blooming cycle of 3-7 days.  I’m still on watch as Dracaena begins Day 9, with well over half her buds yet to open.  Though moon phase was not mentioned as catalyst for blooming, I find Dracaena blooming along with the final 2019 full moon intriguing.  The poem below emerged piecemeal.   The first image is a collage of Dracaena and Moon – the 2nd is a series of photos showing (1) full bloom stalk, (2) a bloom amid unopened buds (with the prior night’s spent bloom clutching a gem of sap), and (3) bud opening.

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17 thoughts on “Bloom Watch

  1. Wow! I had no idea it needed darkness to bloom. Obviously it had no chance at UT Press–I’m pretty sure there were artificial lights outside there all night long, and I never closed the blinds. Carolyn

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    1. Prerequisite “dark” must be somewhat relative … we’ve stopped turning out the kitchen light and it keeps blooming … new blooms opening ~6:00pm and then closing by 9:00am next day. What triggered this remains a mystery! I do hope the others on my porch are taking note, getting ready …

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    1. Thank you, Ken – the surprise of it all just makes those tiny flowers all the more gorgeous. I really must stop taking photos … but Dracaena keeps bursting forth with new blooms … no two exactly alike!

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  2. “I contemplate being the intended moth”….I like that!
    Jazz, we are still getting moths coming to our back porch light at night.
    I love that you bring in the timing of the full moon with the blooming.
    I enjoy anything that is blooming this time of year. Thanks for this and the lovely photo of the flower against the full moon.

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    1. I wonder if moths are trying to get inside our enclosed porch? I’m not seeing them at the windows, but I’ll watch more closely. I cannot leave entry openings until it warms up a bit … the porch is our “greenhouse” for a number of plants that come in for the winter, joining the regulars who stay there year round (like Dracaena!)
      Thank you for your comments on the poem, Betty!

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    1. VJ, thank you. (You’ve no doubt walked past MANY of these in doctor offices, hotels, and such … tall green leafy things that just sit there … until WHOOSH of blooms comes from out of nowhere.)

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    1. LuAnne, many thanks – I think those intricacies are designed to lure the moth, but I admit to getting as close as I could w/o doing damage – drawn in by both visuals and the magnificent aroma.

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