We Create Inspiring Gardens


Hoya mindorensis superba: One Superb Hoya Indeed!

These past months, my interest for Hoyas grew from mere curiosity to full-blown addiction. Who would not fall for these climbing plants’ unique flowers? My first Hoya was a carnosa, a piece given to my Mom by an acquaintance and which I have written about in a previous post.

Since writing about carnosa, I began my search for other varieties, found some here and there – and alas! I have started my small Hoya collection. I’ll be writing about each of these in succeeding entries.

For now, here’s Hoya mindorensis superba. One of only a handful of Hoyas with flowers that come close to being true red. This particular specie was discovered in the Philippines, as a lot of other Hoyas were. What makes this Hoya more interesting is the fact that at night, it emits a scent very similar to my childhood sweet-tooth favorite — Kendi Mint, a brand of mint candy with chocolate at the center. Back then, Kendi Mint was L-O-V-E.

Hoya mindorensis superba is truly a must-have. Place it in your garden under trees, or by your east-facing window.  I have several cuttings now, made soon after the flowers have wilted. They are now inside a greenhouse where they get generous amounts of  filtered light. Once established, I’ll feed to coax them to grow vigorously and start blossoming again soon.  Uh oh, I can’t wait.


Seasonal Peace Lily ‘Sensation’ Flowers Make An Appearance

For those who love plants with big flowers, the ‘sensation’ cultivar of Spathiphyllum or spath would be a perfect choice.

Spathiphyllum belongs to the anthurium genus & has several varieties. There’s ‘Petite’, which is about 12 to 18 inches tall with narrow, ridged leaves.  ‘Mauna Loa’ is a larger sized cultivar which grows to up to 3 feet, with broad blue-green, deeply ridged leaves.  The biggest, grandest, & largest is the ‘sensation’. Coming from the word ‘sensational’, this cultivar can grow over 5-foot tall & 5-foot wide. The leaves are huge, glossy, lance-shaped & deeply-ridged.

Shown in the photo is a mid-sized ‘sensation’.  Although this variety is originally from Central & South America, it thrives in the Philippines & blooms during summer months. The flower is creamy-white & is enclosed in white spathes.  Grown in partially shaded spaces, the ‘sensation’ can be grown indoors & also makes a perfect landscaping plant for landscaping designs. 

Potted ‘sensations’ in bloom are available now in Grandes Jardines de Eleanor.  Get one while flowers are in season & while supplies last 🙂

Hoya Vine in Your Home Garden

One of the more exciting tropical vines is the Hoya, also known as waxplant, waxflower, or waxvine. This is because if you fail to look very closely, you might mistake it to be made of plastic, or take it as an artificial plant. Hoya is a genus of 200-300 species, named by botanist Robert Brown, in honor of his botanist friend, Thomas Hoy.

Out of the hundreds of varieties being cultured around the world, a good number can be found right here in the Philippines. In our garden, we have a flowering piece known as Hoya carnosa or the Frosted Hoya.  It has 1 1/4″ pinkish white with red-centered, fuzzy flowers, 10-12 in each umbel.  It has thin medium leaves on medium-small vines. And yes, the flowers really look frosted. What’s more? The flowers smell like candies, more particularly like chocolate… and peanut butter! So when you get your hands on one — resist the urge to take a bite.

Hoyas are fairly easy to propagate. Simply take 5 inch cuttings and plant them into porous potting media. Make sure the soil is well-watered but not soggy and that the plant receives ample filtered light. When mature, it will begin to flower and will continue to blossom provided the right growing conditions are observed. If to be grown in pots, make sure to insert sturdy stakes into the pot, so there’s room for the vine to wind itself around as it grows.  Established flowering Hoyas can be a very thoughtful gift item.  Ready-to-Gift Hoyas will be available at Grandes Jardines de Eleanor soon so keep posted 🙂

Amaryllis ‘Orange Sovereign’ in Bloom

In the Philippines, we have a myriad of beautiful flowering plants including native varieties and imported ones.  

One of these is the Amaryllis. It is a flowering bulb native to South Africa which has been largely hybridized in Holland for about 300 years today.  It bears huge trumpet-like flowers of different colors [red, red-orange, etc.]; sizes [some up to 8″ in diameter]; and configurations [single up to double layers of petals].

Shown here is one that is in bloom. It has flowered a few times before but I get to share a photo just now.  This piece actually grew three stalks, with 4 huge bright royal orange flowers blooming from one of the stalks.  Flowers from other stalks are still buds so we have more nice elegant flowers coming up. For now, we have three separate Amaryllis bulbs in our garden collection, with a new baby Amaryllis sprouting from one.

This particular piece was imported from Holland by a friend who gave it to my parents as a gift a few years back.

Hello Pilipinas, Hello World!

I have decided to launch this webpage in order to be able to share with you some helpful information in your gardening needs.

 I love beautiful spaces. I like working with plants and stones. I feel happy and stress-free every time I work in the garden.

In April of 2011, I was invited to join a landscaping competition which was just a week away.  I’m happy to say that in my first attempt at landscaping, I bagged the 3rd place among 15 contenders and that I took home not just a very nice glass trophy and considerable cash award; but more importantly, a wealth of new knowledge of the landscaping industry.

Weeks after, I turned this hobby into an enterprise, complete with documentations.

This webpage is actually the softlaunch of this business – Grandes Jardines de Eleanor, a duly registered business under the City Government, the Department of Trade and Industry, and Social Security System. I am currently processing my Bureau of Internal Revenue registration. 

The business name is transliterally, Grand Gardens of Eleanor – Eleanor, being my loving and inspiring Mom. Every garden I make will be dedicated to her, she loves plants and gardening as well and she was the one who encouraged me to pursue the business.

Without much further ado, I’d like to announce that Grandes Jardines de Eleanor is now open for business! 🙂