Soft Opening of Arid and Aroids Living Gallery in Cavite

It was sunny day on May 29 when we visited the soft opening of Arid and Aroids ( AA) Living gallery in Cavite. Traffic was moderate along Mindanao Avenue exit within Barangay Talipapa, Novaliches, Quezon City.

It took us a little over 2 hours traversing the newly opened Metro Manila skyway en route to the province.

This is one of the three known farm location of Arid and Aroids, San Rafael in Bulacan and in Quezon province.

l-r Dr. Jae Silvestre, Mr. Boyet Ganigan and Mayor Socorro ” Corie” Rosario Poblete of Silang , Cavite province

Arid and Aroids Living Gallery

Arid and Aroid Living Gallery entrance

Arid and Aroids Living Gallery is like a living botanic collection of over 30 years by the dynamic tandem of Mr. Boyet Ganigan, Dr. Jae Silvestre and their families. The rare plants is collected from all over the world and meticulously propagated under their farms.

A lot of their plants are award winning collection and highly coveted by many collectors not just in the country but the rest of the world.

The last time we have visited the farm was for the Christmas salu-salo way back in 2019. The 1 hectare location is slowly being developed into world class attraction ideal venue location for pre-wedding nuptial photo, wedding location, intimate parties, outdoor garden setting, corporate events, product launching, debut among others.

The natural contour and landscape setting makes it different from other venue places in the province.

One of the invited guest suggested at they can also open a bar or an art gallery of paintings. There are also in house promo and raffle draw for those guests and buyers. The overall mood was festive but subtle due to the covid 2019 restrictions under general community quarantine with restrictions at National Capital Region plus Bulacan, Rizal, Cavite, Laguna area.

Celebrity Guests

Mr. Troy Montero and Ms. Aubrey Miles

Mayor Socorro ” Corrie” Rosario Poblete, Vice Mayor Aidel Paul G. Belamide, some councilors and barangay officials were the special guests of honor.

We also happen to see the well known social media and fellow blogger Plant Chaser ( Atty. Bom Gomez) who went together with his daughter.

Mr. Troy Montero and Ms. Aubrey Santos Sandel, Ms. Gretchen Fullido, Mr. Emilio Yap III of Manila Bulletin were among the special guests during the soft opening.

Mr. Boyet Ganigan along with Mr. Emil Yap III and companion during the soft opening

Since strict protocol and health guidelines were in place, there were few on the guest lists. But this is very promising, The place is located within 20 kilometers from Tagaytay City.

La Dexie’s Catering Services

The guests, buyers and friends of Arid and Aroid were treated to a whole day of fun, camaraderie and food. The lunch meal were catered by La Dexie’s Catering Service from Cainta, Rizal province.

#10 Corona Street, Brookside Hills Subdivision, Cainta, Rizal province

Contact : 0920-919-2033 / Landline 8655-5867 or 8656-3894

AA Living Gallery – Address Barangay Tartaria , Silang Cavite

Operations : Everyday 8:00am to 5:00pm by appointment

Miss Universe Philippines 2020 Winners Proclaimed

Miss Universe- Philippines 2020 winners and runner-ups were proclaimed few hours ago at a pre-taped telecast.

This was after more than 10 months of preliminary competition, enhanced community quarantine lock down, some candidate had dropped out due to covid 2019 and personal reasons.

Image: courtesy of the Miss Universe Philippines organization

Miss Universe -Philippines 2020 Winners

Ms. Rabiya Mateo  of Iloilo City was named Miss Universe Philippines 2020 during the pageant’s pre-taped coronation ceremonies at the Baguio Country Club’s Cordillera Convention Hall over the weekend.

The almost three hour pageant was also shown in different parts of the world via youtube and television broadcast.

Ms. Ysabella Ysmael from Parañaque City bagged first runner-up honors while Ms. Michele Gumabao from Quezon City was named second runner-up.

Ms. Pauline Amelinckx from Bohol was named third runner-up while Ms.Kimberly Hakenson of Cavite was fourth runner up.   

The 22-year-old Mateo, who bested 45 other candidates, will represent the country in the 69th Miss Universe pageant, the venue and date is still to be announce.

8 Practical Tips For Caring Hibiscus During Rainy Season

Hibiscus locally called as Gumamela is one of the top 10 all time favorite flowering shrub in the country. Growers can encounter some problems during rainy or wet season in the Philippines.

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The most common colors are red, pink, yellow,magenta and intermediate colors. There are some native hibiscus in the country, While hundreds of hybrids origin being cultivated in many homes, public parks, cemeteries, schools, resorts and estates. The flowers does not last long, most of the hybrid cultivars only last for a day or so.

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Hibiscus rosa-sinensis hybrid or Gumamelang Pula planted as hedge plant within Manila Memorial Park

Some Feng Shui practitioners recommend planting reddish color, bright yellow color gumamela. Depending on the position of one’s property to create harmony in colors and balance within the household.

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double petal pink Gumamela  ( photo courtesy of King Louis Farm and Sir Lebon Ong)

8 Practical Tips for Caring Hibiscus /Gumamela

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yellow color 

8.) One can grow their gumamela / hibiscus directly on garden plot or in potted terracotta/ plastic containers. This allows growers to move the containers in ideal location or focal point in one’s home or office when the plant is in bloom. Providing at between 6 to 8 hours of sunlight.

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Hibiscus Taiwan Cloud Cotton

7.) Gumamela requires 50% loam/garden/brown soil with combination of 20% sandy mix, 30% compost, aged cow or carabao manure, aged rice hull, coco coir and vermicast for the rest of the potting mixture. Mulching is recommended for gumamela planted outdoors because it not only provides a lot of protection for the roots, but it also helps the plant retain the moisture, especially if grown in garden type setting.

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peach color

6.) Fertilize weekly using a variety of water soluble fertilizer 20N, 20P, 20K or 10N-10P-10K, (whichever is available) diluted into 1/2 or 1/4 strength during its growing season or flowering season. One may add few teaspoon of slow release fertilizer or compost mixture as fertilizer for the plant. For blooming gumamela plants, a ratio of 20N-30P-30K water soluble fertilizer, trace elements, calcium nitrate, epson salt can also be applied alternately.

Another good brand is Naturamin which enables hibiscus or gumamela to absorb the nutrients. This is also good in other plants like Syngonium podophyllum, flowering plants, orchids, crops and fruits trees.

Avoid using skim milk, beer, Monosodium glutamate (MSG), urine or any home base fertilizer mixture as these can eventually kill your Gumamela or Hibiscus in no time.

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tangerine color

5.) Regular pruning is also required when the shrub grow lush during rainy season. One can schedule a monthly pruning period. Try to sterilize your pruning shears, knife or cutter before using them.

4.) Try to regular check for pest such as aphids, white flies, scale insects, mealybugs, caterpillars, thrips or even spider mites. These insects can eat parts of the flowers, leaves or stems of gumamela.

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3.) Potted hibiscus / gumamela plant with flowers can be enjoyed for a limited time period. Interior decorator suggest that one can put them inside their homes between 1 to 3 days. Near windows where there is bright light.

a humidity tray if you have dry air conditions inside of your house to ensure the plant is getting all of the moisture it needs to thrive.

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single petal yellow variety

2.) Propagation is quite easy. One can propagate via cuttings, air layering or seeds during the onset of the rainy season, or when one prunes their gumamela shrub. Find a node and cut about six-inches below that and then remove everything except the very top leaves. Another way is to graft different colored gumamela.

1.) Avoid over watering, Especially during this rainy season. This can cause a lot of problems like root rotting and fungal problems. When in doubt, one can forgo watering for at least a day or so. Gumamela needed well- drained soil if planted in garden type setting.

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pale pink form

Economic Importance and Ethno Botanical Uses

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Hibiscus Red Double

Hibiscus syriacus is the national flower of South Korea while Hibiscus rosa-sinensis is the national flower of Malaysia. Hibiscus brackenridgei is the state flower of Hawaii, While it is a national symbol in Haiti, Solomon and Niue.

Hibiscus, Gumamela, Rose Mallow or Rose of Sharon and hybrids are commonly use to beautify the landscape.  Blooming gumamela can also serves as focal point in one’s office or public area.

The flowers is used by children in many parts of the country as part of a bubble-making pastime. The flowers and leaves are crushed until the sticky juices come out, adding 1 tablespoon detergent to make bubble.

Some would use the flowers to make edible flower salad. Flowers and young leaves are also use by some for their medicinal properties. In some parts of the country, flowers are use for offering in home altars and as lei for welcoming guests.

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Hibiscus manihot or Abelmoschus manihot

Abelmoschus manihot formerly known as Hibiscus manihot is eaten in ( Quezon / Tayabas area) called Sapinit, Lagikuway. Bicol region and some parts of Ilocos region. Some Visayan provinces also use the flowers for souring agent in soup. In Surigao provinces it is called Lagikway, Lagikuway,Baniwayun. It is called Malaguhon / Malaguhun ( Han.) and Linikway/ Barakue ( Bng) Glikway/ Gikugguse (Sub) in other Philippine languages.

The flower is used as souring ingredient or add on for local vegetables, soup or meat dishes. The dish had a slippery texture like okra.

Although not so common within Metro Manila region. This species grow in semi-wild state in open grassland,cultivated fields and in rural areas all throughout the country.

University of the Philippines Los Baños had been active in breeding hibiscus and came up with several series which pay tributes to great women of the country.

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Php 8.00 block of 4, Gumamela flowers issued by Philippine Postal Corporation in 1991

Philippine Postal Corporation released several definitive and special stamps in 1991, 2015 and 2018. This is a proof that gumamela or hibiscus is popular among thematic stamp collectors. Some mural painters also painted on the long perimeter wall of Manila North Cemetery last October 2019 dubbed as ” Flores para Los Muertos“.

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yellow with red center

Hibiscus tea is an herbal tea made as an infusion from crimson or deep magenta-colored calyces (sepals) of the roselle or Hibiscus sabdariffa flower. Sometimes called Karkade tea or Jamaica tea.

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Hibiscus sabdariffa popularly known as Roselle- grown by the author from seeds

There are also several Fb groups which specializes in Hibiscus or Gumamela.

Gumamela plants and hybrids are commonly available in many garden centers like in Tabang, Guiguinto,Bulacan Garden,Bay,Calamba,Los Baños in Laguna, Silang, Cavite province, Mindanao Avenue Garden Center, Araneta Farmer’s Garden, Quezon City Memorial Circle,White Plains garden center,Neopolitan, Fairview, Rona’s Garden in Visayas Avenue,Cartimar Garden Center in Pasay, Centris Sunday Market, neighborhood homes and backyard nationwide.

Some big time propagators includes Pagsolingan Garden, Arids and Aroid, Bulacan Garden, Mr. Rey Tester among others.

References, Sources, Bibliography:

Interview and photo courtesy of the following: King Louis, Mr. Rodrigo Joseph Bautista, Mr.Lebon Ong, Arids Aroid, Mac Pagsolingan,Mr. Rey Tester, Ms. Naida Delma and the author

Personal interview with backyard growers, hobbyists and farm owners.

Wonning, Paul R. (March 3, 2014) Gardener’s Guide To The Hibiscus: Perennial Hibiscus Flower Care ( ( Gardener”s Guide to the Full Sun Perennial Flower Garden Book 12) Mossy Feet Books.

V. M. Jadhav et al. / Journal of Pharmacy Research 2009, 2(8),1220-1222

University of the Philippines Los Baños : https://ovcre.uplb.edu.ph/

Sunset Western Garden Book, 1995:606–607

Steiner, Mona Lisa, PHD;Care, M &L Licudine Enterprises, First Edition 1952, Second Edition 1960, Third Edition 1986, Atlag, Malolos , Bulacan. Gumamela Family (Malvaceae) pages 173 to 174, Philippine Ornamental Plants And Their Care.

Madulid, Domingo; Winner, National Book Award, Science, 1995. Revised Edition, 2000 with 388 pages. Malvaceae pages 240 to 244 Bookmark, Makati, A Pictorial Cyclopedia of Philippine Ornamental Plants.

Lawton, Barbara Perry (2004). Hibiscus: Hardy and Tropical Plants for the Garden. Timber Press. p. 36. ISBN 978-0-88192-65-45.

International Hibiscus Society

C Les Beers & Jim Howie: Growing Hibiscus (1985 and 1990), Reprinted 1986, 1987
Second edition published 1990, First published in 1985 by Kangaroo Press Pty Ltd
3 Whitehall Road (P. 0. Box 75) Kenthurst 2156, Typeset by G. T Setters Pty Limited
Printed in Hong Kong by Colorcraft Ltd, ISBN 0 86417 278 8

Brickell, Christopher, ed. (2008). The Royal Horticultural Society A-Z Encyclopedia of Garden Plants. United Kingdom: Dorling Kindersley. p. 534. ISBN 978-14053329-65

Bulacan Garden Corporation

American Hibiscus Society

Christmas Salu-salo at Arid and Aroids Farm in Silang, Cavite

It is the season for fun, shopping, outing, What a great way to explore a beautiful farm located within Silang, Cavite province.

collection of several cycad from all all over the world

This is not my first time to visit this farm, It was part of the several horticultural tours and farm tour organized by different plant societies and organization. The last tour that we have participated was organized in 2015 by Hortikultura Extravaganza by the Philippine Horticulture Society Incorporated.

Arid and Aroids also have farm located in San Rafael, Bulacan and in Quezon provinces.

Christmas Salu-Salo at Arid and Aroids Farm 2019

The Christmas salu-salo was a simple get together with friends and buyers of the farm. The meals, desserts, fruits, drinks are brought in by those people who are invited.

visitors are delighted with buffet meal

Mr.Njah Alvarez brought some banana cakes for sharing, while some brought buko pie ( coconut pie), lechon manok, pancit , sushi, espasol, chicken binakol and Chef Marlon and wife gave us some of their home made ham. They also find time to cook their own version of shawarma.

Tillandsia capitata and other varieties are also grown

The 1 hectare farm is a treasure trove of variegated plants, cacti, succulents, philodendron, ferns and mutant plants not just in the Philippines but the rest of the world.

It was a Christmas get together by friends, relatives and buyers of the farm. The food was delicious and the roasted pig (lechon) was a delight to behold.

The owners are planning big for the 3 known farms of Arid and Aroids. For more update, they have several known social media accounts.

Those who wanted to visit the farm, is by special appointment.

Arid and Aroid Farm

Location: Barangay Tartaria, Silang, Cavite

Approachable Talk on Indian Cuisine by Chef Vikram Singh

Chef Vikram Singh was the resource speaker at the last day of the Cavite Food and Culinary Expo 2019.  Despite having an overcast skies, there were lot of attendees at the Isla Event place in Imus, Cavite province.

Chef Vikram Singh

Chef Vikram Singh

He is co- founder of Tikka Tales Food Services, Mau’s Grills, Gravies and Goodies. He is also the PRO of Global Academy Alumni Association.

He had been living in the country for 9 years and gained a lot of friends and consider the country as his second home.

crowdcrowd

The talks started at about 4:00 pm after the talk of Chef Gene Gutierrez of Big Ben’s Kitchen and famous Imus longganisa.

Senior Leader of Global Academy, Chair Person and President of Global Academy Alumni Association were at the venue to show support.

He shared some information of Indian cuisine, misconception  about the cuisine and the similarities of some dishes to Filipino cuisine.

It was well attended talks and the participants asked a lot of questions on Indian cuisines.  There was a short question and answer portion after the brief talk.  Chef Vikram Singh had some let the participants taste some of the well-loved Indian dessert.

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