Identification: Orange Parrot Plant?

Discussion in 'Indoor and Greenhouse Plants' started by amieckow, Oct 10, 2003.

  1. amieckow

    amieckow Member

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    Hi. I bought a plant at Home Depot (in Texas) the other day and I swear I saw a sign that said it was an "orange parrot" (it's NOT a tulip), but I can't find any information on that plant, so I'm not even sure if that's really the name.
    Anyway, I don't have a digital camera, but I'm hoping that a description will suffice, so here goes:
    It's about 18" tall, with green leaves that are 7-9" long and 2-3" wide (there is only one leaf per stem/stalk) - the leaves are smooth with no hair
    The flowers are orange and have only two petals, making a shape kind of like this: () with a black thing sticking up in the middle. The flowers are about 3" tall and are on stalks with 1-2 leaves per stalk.
    I tried leaving it in a low light situaion and it appeared to be dying, so now it's in my windowsill (full sun from about noon until 4pm) where the leaves appear to be burning.
    If anyone has any ideas, please let me know - in the interim, I will try to find a digital camera I can use to take a picture of it!
    Thanks
     
  2. Daniel Mosquin

    Daniel Mosquin Paragon of Plants UBC Botanical Garden Forums Administrator Forums Moderator 10 Years

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    Hello,

    Is it possibly Heliconia psittacorum 'Choconiana'? This plant and its relatives are commonly known variously as parrot's beak, parakeet flower, etc.

    I'm not able to find any good non-profit or education institutional sites that have information on the plant, so I will have to direct you to a Google search instead - be sure to check out both the default "web listings" and the image thumbnails indexed under the image tab.
     
  3. amieckow

    amieckow Member

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    That's it!

    You got it! Thanks so much...
    Do you have any care tips for me? Now that I know what it is, hopefully I can care for it a little better. It's in full sunlight right now, but the flowers aren't opening...I'm not sure where to put it!
     
  4. I bought one of these at Home Depot also and it bloomed beautifully fora number of months outside in partial shade with a SW frontage. As soon as the weather began to get cool it began to look like it was dying. I moved it inside but it is now all brown and appears dead. Do these plants die back in winter and return in spring? I can't find anything about this. Thanks for any help.
     
  5. Chris Klapwijk

    Chris Klapwijk Active Member 10 Years

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    H. psittacorum is a highly variable species with over 1000 distinct variants on record.

    A heavy feeder; plant in open, moisture-retentive bark mix rich in leafmould and dried manure. Keep semi-shaded in humid conditions at no less than 15°C/60°F. Syringe and foliar feed often, except when in bloom or at coolest time of the year. Remove flowered growths to encourage new suckers.
     

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