Houseplant ID Please. Bonsai candidate?

bryanscott(3a)September 11, 2012

Hi folks. Can anyone help me to identify this plant? Picked it up for dirt cheap at Home Depot today. Marked simply as a tropical.

Plant consists of several cuttings thrown together into this pot. It looks like it would take well to pruning and branching out, and therefore make good raw material to become a bonsai. Sorry�photos don't show the lower branches well, but they look like they would become woody over time kind of like a Hedera Ivy.

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Another photo.

    Bookmark   September 11, 2012 at 6:52PM
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I may be completely wrong, but at first glance, it looks like a lipstick plant which is actually a hanging plant. Others will soon chime in to confirm or correct the id.


    Bookmark   September 11, 2012 at 6:58PM
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I would think that bonsai plants are usually selected for their central-trunkedness, if you will.

    Bookmark   September 11, 2012 at 7:31PM
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Right, right, but my plan is to separate all these cuttings (there are many in there) and plant them as individuals. They look like they will come apart very easily.

Then, with some heavy pruning, I think the stems will harden. Well, that, actually I'm unsure of. But like I said before they feel a lot like Hedera Ivy so I think there's a good chance they will.

    Bookmark   September 11, 2012 at 8:10PM
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pirate_girl(Zone7 NYC)


If this is a Lipstick plant (which it may well be), it may harden as you suggest but I doubt its stems will thicken up as a bonsai might. I don't think that's the growth habit of this plant, sorry. Also I think single stems of this will look spindly & sad, that's my two cents. You did ask.

    Bookmark   September 11, 2012 at 9:39PM
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May I suggest a jade plant? It's an oldie but a goodie and perfect for practicing your skills on. The limbs you remove can be rooted to produce more plants to practice on until you perfect your technique!


    Bookmark   September 11, 2012 at 10:41PM
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Thanks all. I've got a bunch of young jades, as well as several other more obvious bonsai candidates: ficus, schefflera, hedera ivy, olive, Australian mint bush (although the one I have did not respond well at all to root pruning and seems to have collapsed) and a juniper.

The little guy in question was just a cheap hardware store pickup that I thought might have potential. If not, it's not a big deal at all. Will still make an interesting addition to my collection.


    Bookmark   September 11, 2012 at 10:53PM
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Good luck and have fun!


    Bookmark   September 12, 2012 at 3:39AM
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This looks like a lipstick (Aeschynanthus) to me. I grow several varieties and this is likely a variety of A. radicans. Even with pruning and time their stems always remain quite thin. They are tropical vining epiphytes and cannot easily support their weight vertically. They are nice plants, especially when in bloom. Keep in mind that they can become rather large though.


    Bookmark   September 12, 2012 at 12:57PM
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