Monday, March 21, 2011

Antlion?

video

Mostly I'm just testing the 'upload video' feature since the quality of this video is a little terrible. While looking around to take pictures, I noticed several little pits and crouched down to see better. It turns out that there was a little beetle/bug trying to get out and towards the end of the video, you can see dirt being shoveled out while the beetle ends up getting flipped over several times.

I'm not sure what's going on here. Doesn't seem like the beetle is in any danger. I assume it's an Antlion since it's the only one I know that digs a pit.

Er... Second day of Spring!

You know, I honestly thought today was the first day of Spring but it turns out that yesterday was the first day. Oops. Oh well... hehe. I fertilized all the plants so hopefully there'll be a big burst of growth everywhere.


Wisteria



Hen and Chicks


Hen and Chicks


Below are pictures of some type of aloe plant? I made a thread about repotting it last year but never got around to it. I really need to but I feel helpless because I'm not sure how to do it and whatnot. I really should and just get it over with.






Thanksgiving Cactus


This plant got bit the worst when frost managed to hit the plants in the greenhouse (It's so frustrating when that happens). I was about to write this plant off but was pretty ecstatic to see new growth.

Oh, and as a tiny note to myself, today I started a batch of thanksgiving cactus seeds. Hopefully third time is the charm.

Friday, March 18, 2011

Random Plants


AMARYLLIS

This picture is of my Amaryllis batch that I started from seeds in 2007. My fingers are crossed that at least one of them blooms this spring. Just one. That's all I'm asking! I really really want to see one of them bloom to see what they look like.




Dragon Arum (Dracunculus Vulgaris)

I am really stunned that we haven't had a frost yet. Look how big they're getting! Usually we have a last minute frost that hurts them but nothing like that has happened yet. Fingers crossed that there's no frost coming through here again...

Macro fun - close-up of Dragon Arum leaf.


Wisteria

The blooms are getting ready to come out. I don't know how many flowers are getting ready to come out this spring but I don't think we're in for a usual flashy show.

Monday, March 7, 2011

Using stuff around the house...


You know, It's kind of fun to hit Google and do searches to see if anyone's using random stuff from around the house to use on their plants.

I just made my usual fertilizer:
24oz can of beer
2 cups of epsom salt
1 cup of ammonia
1 cup of molasses

I know there's several variations of the recipe, the different amounts, people being concerned that one amount was too much so they put in a smaller amount, etc. I believe a cup of water or two is added as well to dilute it but I don't bother with that. This is what I make and I put 1 tablespoon per watering can.

I use this fertilizer mostly for my thanksgiving/christmas cacti. They love the stuff and they bloom like crazy when the time comes. If I recall correctly, I read on one thread that this shouldn't be used on herbs.


When the roses were getting ready to be thrown out after several years of not blooming, I decided to make 'Banana Slush' and that's where you buy really brown bananas that are normally ready for banana bread but you just blend it up in a blender (peels included) with some water and pour it around your rose bushes. I did this every two weeks and they all bloomed like crazy. There were some roses that we totally forgot the color of and it was quite interesting to go "Ohhhh, yeah. Remember? You/she/he/they got it from such and such and then planted it here and etc..."

Problem was, as soon as I stopped feeding them the blended bananas, they pretty much stopped blooming. It was a fun period but with the roses reverting back to their non-bloom state, all of them were thrown out. Funny enough, one popped up the next spring ... It was quite a surprise so that one is still around.


I also found a thread where people talked about using their leftover coffee in their pots to pour on their plants due to the tannic acid. People shared experiences of someone in their office just pouring the leftover coffee in a potted plant and it ends up being really happy for it. I have yet to try this. (Probably best to dilute it even though one person said they just did it straight without doing anything else to it)

I tried saving coffee grounds (I don't drink coffee so it's sort of a pain to remind others to save for me) and that only worked briefly. I don't mind because when I did have a batch of coffee grounds, I couldn't really figure out where to apply the stuff. The batch I had was used for a tomato plant with a couple of banana peels that were saved.


There's also the tip of using eggshells in watering cans for the calcium.

Saturday, March 5, 2011

Venus Fly Trap


I was looking over my old gardening pictures from 2005 and 06 (It appears earlier disks require a UDF Reader and it doesn't work on this computer. Ouch.). I saw this picture of a Venus Fly Trap that I used to own, dated August 24, 2006.

It's hard to tell but I have it sitting on top of a slightly domed lid that's resting on top of a plastic bowl with water. The domed lid comes from one of those old mosquito repellent things that you light up and put the lid over it. I figured it'd sink into the water a bit so that the VFT pot was always touching the water.

The plant lived for a couple years until that year (2006) it insisted on growing out of the bottom of the pot (The picture there sort of demonstrates it. The clump on the left was growing out of the bottom of the pot). After that winter, it never came back.

Looking at this picture makes me want to buy another one this year. I think I will!