Crotons of the Galapagos Islands

Discussion in 'THE CROTON SOCIETY' started by annafl, Apr 21, 2015.

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  1. annafl

    annafl Esteemed Member

    Just got back from a fantastic 10 day trip to the Galapagos. There are only a few islands which have colonies of people living on them and we visited a few. Although crotons are not endemic there, they have been introduced from Ecuador and elsewhere to some of the gardens. I had to take photos to show. See if you recognize any of them.:)


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  2. annafl

    annafl Esteemed Member

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  3. annafl

    annafl Esteemed Member

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  4. annafl

    annafl Esteemed Member

    Sorry for the repeats. I am not sure what I am doing. I have to say that at times the hikes took their toll, and I found myself having to stop and relax as the natives do.

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  5. annafl

    annafl Esteemed Member

    I found this first one to be the most fascinating. Difficult to capture in the photo, but at a distance, it didn't look like a croton and you had to approach to see what it was. Very cool plant.

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  6. annafl

    annafl Esteemed Member

    We had the fortune of being there during many of the animals' mating season. Here is one guy doing his best to show his stuff in hopes of attracting a suitable mate. However, there were many others strutting around like this doing the same:

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  7. annafl

    annafl Esteemed Member

    We came home to find there still hadn't been any rain. It's been weeks now, except a little spit we got yesterday. Our neighbors slashed a giant mahoe between our properties that cast shade for a few hours on many of my crotons, so these are now very unhappy, frying plants that have dropped leaves. The colors are quickly changing from pinks. Oh well, some of the many challenges of gardening. Things are always changing.
     
  8. Marie Nock

    Marie Nock Well-Known Member

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    665
    Hi Ana,
    You have a couple of shots of Princess Eugenia. My first cutting of Princess Eugenia came from Guayaquil many years ago. When we visited Ecuador two years ago we found it throughout the southern part of Ecuador - even on the other side of the Andes.

    What fun you must have had!
    Marie
     
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  9. Bullwinkle

    Bullwinkle Esteemed Member

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    I have planned a two trips there that never worked out. Hopefully one day soon,it looks great :)
     
  10. annafl

    annafl Esteemed Member

    Mike, my husband and I have been wanting to go for 28, almost 29 years now. We'd wanted to go for our honeymoon, but couldn't get good availability at the time. We've thought about it every year and wanted to take our kids, but kept finding other places to go. Well, our kids didn't make it this time, but hopefully one day they will. It's a very worthwhile trip.

    Marie, yes! That was one of the ones I definitely recognized. I saw it on at least two of the islands in several gardens or pots. There was one that was actually over the roof of one of the houses. It was leggy, but beautiful up top. Saw some beautiful crotons in Guayaquil, but only while in a car or bus to and from the airport or during a city tour.

    We had an absolutely wonderful time. We learned a lot and saw lots of great animals. Here is one example only associated with the Galapagos. One of the birds I went hoping to see. The blue footed booby. Many great examples of this bird with amazing feet. Apparently, the bluer the feet, the more successful the male is at finding a mate. During the courtship, he lifts his feet, one at a time, showing them off to the female. If she thinks they are the best she's seen, then it's a done deal.


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    Last edited: Apr 21, 2015
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  11. donroberth

    donroberth Well-Known Member

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    Location:
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    Nice Croton photos of your trip to the Galapagos Islands...also, very interesting. Thanks for sharing. :)
     
  12. Pix

    Pix Well-Known Member

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    WOW! What a great vacation! What great crotons! What great natives (and non-natives) are lying on the beach! :)
     
  13. Pix

    Pix Well-Known Member

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    ...and this "blue feet" story is outstanding!
     
  14. Native son

    Native son Well-Known Member

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    Great pictures, thanks for thinking of the home bound. What that must have been like for Darwin and the other first.
     
  15. VeroKarl

    VeroKarl Well-Known Member

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    Location:
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    The Galapagos Islands were the best trip I have ever been on. I brought a group of students about 15 years ago and stayed on a boat traveling from island to island for about two weeks. I was completely focused on the wildlife, so barely noticed the plants aside from the massive tree-like opuntia. I probably had not been exposed to crotons much at that point, because they were not close to being hardy in North Carolina or Rhode Island. If I ever go back, I won't miss the plant diversity. I am so glad you had the opportunity to have that incredible experience and brought back some great photos.
     
  16. annafl

    annafl Esteemed Member

    Thanks, Robert, Pix and Lamar.

    Karl, that's exactly what we did. For me, the highlight of the whole experience was snorkeling with the sea lions. Of course, none of the animals are afraid of humans, so the playful and curious sea lion youngsters, and some mamas would swim with us and around us and blow bubbles in our faces to get a real close look through our masks. A little unnerving with their speed and quickness in the water. They pulled off some Kamakaze moves very well. Coming at you point blank at full speed, and veering away at the very last second as they blow bubbles in your face. The first time I experienced it I was frozen.

    Here are your Opuntias. It's difficult to appreciate scale, but these trunks might as well be on an oak tree. The tall one on the right is somewhere between 15-20 feet. Of course, the plant life in the islands is not very exciting. There were some islands we went to that had no more than a couple of lava cactus amongst only lava rock. We saw almost no plants at all. These were the youngest volcanic islands that haven't developed much plant life yet.
     

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  17. Phil Stager

    Phil Stager Well-Known Member

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    Location:
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    Great pic of the blue-footed booby - have not seen one since my I was on an icebreaker coming back from the Antarctic - but that was waaay before digital photography. Great croton pics too! See you this weekend.
     
  18. Jerry Shilling

    Jerry Shilling Well-Known Member

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    Location:
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    Really enjoyed this Ana - thank you!
     
  19. Moose

    Moose Esteemed Member

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    Location:
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    Looks like a croton paradise - isolated with no croton scale :FastGrow
     
  20. annafl

    annafl Esteemed Member

    Thanks, Phil and Jerry. Ron, I did check for scale and didn't find any. Here is a closer photo of the interesting croton I wrote about.
    Didn't look like a croton from a distance. More like an acalypha.

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  21. annafl

    annafl Esteemed Member

    Here are more of the natives. It was so interesting just running into these guys in the wild. The first photo is of one of the giant tortoises going for a dip in a duckweed-filled pond. The other guy was just walking around getting a snack. There were many doing just that on this Santa Cruz island. DSC_0545.JPG DSC_0491.JPG
     
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  22. Native son

    Native son Well-Known Member

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    Hey Ana, just a question what are the regulations on slipping a Few small cuttings of that little beauty? Not that I would do that, but I have heard of others that can and will find a way to do that.
     
  23. annafl

    annafl Esteemed Member

    Strictly prohibited to take anything at all from these islands, Lamar. Not even a pebble. I would not risk it. As far as from the Ecuadorian mainland, Marie would be the person to ask. I'm not sure if you'd need a permit.
     
  24. Native son

    Native son Well-Known Member

    Messages:
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    Location:
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    You are telling you would let the threat of a little jail time keep you from a cutting? Come on little person!!!!! image.jpg
     
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  25. Pix

    Pix Well-Known Member

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    [​IMG] I better never go there...
     
  26. palmisland

    palmisland Well-Known Member

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    Beautiful Ana, A trip defiantly on my list!:p
     
  27. Perry Edge

    Perry Edge Active Member

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    124
    What a great trip you had. The picture of you on the beach is hilarious! I'm very envious; the Galapagos are on my bucket list.
     
  28. annafl

    annafl Esteemed Member

    Phil, a trip to Antartica? Wow. Would love to hear about that one sometime.

    Thanks, Randy. It has now been scratched off my list. Just a few more to go! Perry, the sea lions looked so relaxed, I thought I'd give it a try.

    I've showed just a few of the animals, but none of the spectacular scenery of these volcanic islands full of lava rock. This is an iconic view of one of the youngest islands, Bartolome. We climbed to the highest peak and the view was breathtaking all the way around. The sharp rock is called Pinnacle Rock. Later that day we snorkeled all the way around it and that side of the island. You can see what little vegetation this young island has. One of the unique animals we saw there was the Galapagos penguin. Yes, a penguin at the equator. Descended from Antartica penguins, but adapted to the equatorial climate.
     
  29. annafl

    annafl Esteemed Member

    Oops, forgot the photos!

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  30. Jeff Searle

    Jeff Searle Well-Known Member

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    Location:
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    Wow...a trip of a lifetime. Good for you! I hope to hear more about on Saturday.
     
  31. annafl

    annafl Esteemed Member

    I am now seeing advertising for Galapagos cruises on this site. I apologize. I did not in any way nurture this. The line advertising company is not the one we used nor would I ever knowingly bring any advertising to this site. Sorry it happened.
     

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