Details about Puya alpestris *live plant* SAPPHIRE BLUE FLOWER rare xeric hardy bromeliadSee original listing
Feb 12, 2012
[ 0 bids ]
Kensington, California, United States
Blue Sapphire Flower - Chagual Azul
Puya alpestris hails from dry alpine slopes of south-central Chile and Nenquén, Argentina. A relative of pineapple, the genus Puya consists of hundreds of terrestrial bromeliads mostly from alpine locales within the Andes Mountains. These remarkable plants often grow where vegetation is sparse and conditions are harsh and Puya species provide delicious and valuable nectar to birds and bears.
Puya alpestris forms a rosette of striking, handsome silver leaves with spiny margins up to 4' in diameter and 2-3' in height. By the time it gets to blooming size, it will make pups from the base. As with all bromeliads, it once a rosette flowers, it dies but is replaced by vegetative duplicates from the base. Flowering is a fantastic event! The flowers are large, the petals are soft and their colour is extremely rare and unusual - a true sapphire blue contrasted pleasingly by gilded orange pollen. Puya alpestris blooms on a massive, tall inflorescence that is branched in the manner of a Christmas tree; a natural design that accommodates birds in their quest for the copious nectar it provides.
Puya alpestris can take some 5-7 years to bloom from seed, however established clumps can live for many decades, and perhaps even for hundreds of years. Old clumps can form impenetrable masses of spiny, beautiful silvery leaves that make for an ingenious natural fence or barrier; you can be sure no deer or humans will cross a row of established Puya! Puya alpestris can also be successfully bloomed in a large pot, however care should be taken so as to not get hooked by its sharp spines.
Situate your Puya in a sunny location with well-drained soil. Puya alpestris is cold hardy and has survived occasional dips as low as 18°C in Berkeley, California. It may be even more hardy than this.
It's disappointing that Puya alpestris remains quite rare in cultivation and while it hasn't been tested widely in North America, it does grow very well in California and surprisingly also in Hawai'i. Established, mature plants are totally drought-tolerant and do not need any summer-time irrigation, relying on winter rains alone.
You are bidding on a 1-year old seedling like the one pictured below:
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Terms and Conditions
(Updated 23 Jan 2012)
Please read before bidding:
I propagate and sell high-quality, rare plants from my collection, most of which are very hard to find anywhere. For me propagating and distributing rare flora is a labour of love. You can bid with confidence knowing that you will be shipped healthy material as I maintain high standards of hygiene and nutrition for my plants. My collection is built up from years of searching, trading and careful purchasing from ethical domestic and international sources. My motivation for selling plants on eBay is two fold. The first is to expand the range of rare species available to interested gardeners and horticulturists both for their enjoyment and to help ensure these species' survival ex situ by increasing their numbers and availability. The second is to help support my efforts in the propagation of these rare species as all the money from your purchases go directly to paying my greenhouse utility bills, propagation supplies and to help me acquire new plant material.
I put care and time into writing each description for plant auctions. I include useful cultural information for the purpose of your success with each species and it is recommend to keep a copy of these for your future reference.
These days I ship most plants via USPS Priority Mail and seeds via 1st Class). The shipping charge reflects the actual postage cost, packing materials and the time it takes for me to pack and ship your purchases. The shipping cost also reflects recent price increases by USPS and eBay's new policy of taking a significant cut of the shipping you pay for themselves. I pack your purchases carefully and in the way I would like to receive a plant if I were a customer. Delivery confirmation is now included in the shipping cost, however tracking and/or insurance are not included but are available upon request made before or at the time of payment. I can also offer shipping via other USPS services such as First Class mail or Express Mail. FedEx overnight or 2-day shipping are more expensive options. Whenever possible I will combine multiple items for a combined shipping discount however I ask that you please inform me if you wish your items to be shipped jointly prior to payment so that I can send you an adjusted invoice.
Recent changes to the eBay inputs for international shipping have mangled the shipping costs for international customers. If you are an international customer and the shipping charges seem too expensive, they are probably inaccurate. Please contact me and I will provide you with shipping cost quotes ahead of time if you have any concerns. After purchasing an item, please wait for me to send you an invoice before paying so that you will get the correct and most affordable shipping option.
Because I am a hobby grower, with other work commitments outside of eBay, I only get to the post office just once a week to ship. 99% of the time I ship on Mondays (the day following end of auctions). In special cases I may be able to ship on other days of the week, but only if agreed upon ahead of time.
The winning bidder of the auction is responsible for checking on weather forecasts and how they may adversely affect the shipment of plants. I am located in mild climate that facilitates safe shipping year-round. If extreme weather (below 32°F or above 95°F) is occurring in your area and/or the area that lie between my location and that of your shipping address, you may wish to request that I hold your purchase until better weather or have them shipped faster than for what Priority Mail allows. If requested at or before the time of payment, I am willing to hold on to purchases until weather improves. Another option is upgrading to shipping via Express Mail. For shipping during cold spells (below 32°F in the day time) I can include single or multiple 72 hour heat packs at $6 each (if paid with plant invoice, $7 if paid separately). Heat packs add weight and bulk to packages and take longer to pack properly and this is reflected in the cost. If weather is extremely cold, heat packs may not be effective. To ensure that your plant purchase isn't harmed by cold or hot weather, be sure to make arrangements at your receiving address so that the package doesn't remain outside in a hot or cold location after delivery. I cannot replace plants that are damaged by extreme cold or heat in transit, so during extreme weather it is important to thoroughly consider your options for shipping.
I set up my 7-day auctions to begin and end on Sunday evenings around 5pm (17:00) Pacific Standard Time. Of course in order for me to ship on the next day (Monday: see above), payment must be received within 12 hours of the auction's end. Auctions paid for later than this will be shipped on the following Monday. Auctions must be paid for 72 hours after their end or else the sale will automatically be cancelled and the item re-listed. If there are any issues with paying please contact me via eBay. I am very good about communicating; I care a great deal about you being happy with your purchase and for your transaction to run smoothly. Conversely, eBay users who abuse goodwill by winning auctions but never paying without any attempts at communicating will be blocked and reported to eBay.
Attention international bidders, and bidders from Hawai'i, Puerto Rico and other US territories:
I am a hobby grower and as such cannot provide phytosanitary certification for any plants or seeds that may be required by agriculture and/or customs agents in your region. It is the responsibility of bidders with mailing addresses outside of the continental United States to understand the import restrictions that may exist and inform me of any relevant packing instructions. I do not wish to discourage international bidders, but it is essential that such bidders understand the risk involved before bidding. I know what it is like to want a species that is impossible to obtain in one's own country and I will do my best to help you. In all cases, I recommend that such bidders contact me before placing bids. I cannot replace or refund purchases of plants that have been confiscated by customs agents, thus by bidding you agree to accept responsibility for this risk. International buyers, please allow me to send you an invoice before paying so that shipping details can be sorted out.
No shipping to Canada, Australia or New Zealand, I'm sorry.
If in doubt or if there are any issues, please contact me. I am usually able to respond to inquiries within 24 hours.