April 29, 2013

Greenhouse Notes for late April

Heirloom Tomatoes are starting to Sprout! Every one except Green Zebra has tiny cotyledons. I see signs that Cassias are sprouting, too.

I watered thirsty plants in the greenhouse. We had two tenths of an inch of rain today outside.

I planted out some Daturas, both Purple and White, together. I started both together so that the white are 'socks' for the bigger, darker Purple.  They're all together with Pink Brugmansias and purple Daylilies.

I put a soaker pipe in the Greenhouse bed. Gerberas and Pentas are blooming.
I don't know when Dianthus barbatus will bloom; biennial seed planted last fall.

View of the whole length, and a tiny green pepper if you look close.

The newly cleaned (by He-who-Mows) propane tank is so nice I had to show it. I always wanted to paint it to look like a Yellow Submarine, but white reflects more heat.

Leaving you with something pretty: the last potted Amaryllis.

April 27, 2013

Roses Are Best Viewed Near the Ground

My pictures taken from high in the air did little to showcase Roses, which are better viewed up close.

This is the top side view of what He-Who-Mows sees when he walks out of his farm building: Belinda's Dream with blousy pink blossoms, Red and Pink Knockouts, Rose de Rescht just now putting on a bit of foliage and hardly noticeable -- we'll catch her fragrance later when blooms come on. At the end is Reine des Violettes clashing beautifully in lavender.

Little Business Daylilies will bloom soon in front of the KOs, as near as I found to the same color in a Daylily as Red Knockout .

Red Knockout is his favorite.

Red Knockout

 I am partial to Roses with fragrance. Here, Reine des Violettes in all its wide open glory, just getting started for the season.\

A cane pegged, now starting to break dormant buds along its length.
The cane to the upper left has blooming buds along its length.
Oh. Everytime I see this picture I intend to go immediately and get pinestraw to cover that cardboard.

April 25, 2013

Toads in Flower Pots and Heirloom Tomatoes

'Delmar' dug in in a pot where I put Duranta cuttings to root.
Only 2 of 5 rooted. I think Delmar may be the reason for failure.
He sits in this same position for days. I wonder how many fruit flies he catches?
I first noticed Delmar sitting in a big clay pot where I'd put a dozen or more little succulent leaves off the Burro Tail Sedum I bought. They have teeny leaves formng on one end, pinhead sized. There sat Delmar. No insects about, but the pot of soil with vermiculite on the top must have been cool  
or Kewl, to Delmar. I moved that pot out of his reach and he set up housekeeping in the Duranta pot.
Elsewhere in the greenhouse:
Mixed success with rooting Iberis.
I planted tomato seeds this week.
These are seeds I won in an online contest by Dirt du Jour blog.
They are from TomatoFest and are the collection known as 'Gary's Favorite'
-- Gary being Gary Ibsen of TomatoFest.
Each packet has about 30 seeds. I planted a few of each. They have such glamourous names as 'Green Zebra' and 'Dagma's Perfection and 'Kellogg's Breakfast' and 'Black Krim.' All heirloom tomatoes.
Gary, and Dagma Lacey, are currently active in supporting numerous urban, school and community gardens world-wide with their TomatoFest Tomato Seed Donations Program in their effort to support bio-diversity, ensure that heirloom tomato varieties will be preserved, and to feed those in need.
I also planted seeds of Candlesticks (Cassia alata).  There is one plant up of Pride of Barbados.
Pride of Barbados outside have new foliage coming from roots, only 3 have no growth. Yet.
Seed trays are up high where Delmar can't hop. Any insects will be taken care of by the anoles that frequent that bench.

April 21, 2013

Solar LIghts for a Garden Accent

These lights were a present some years back. They finally stopped working and I left them as markers here and there. I'm always needing something vertical to mark the spot where a sprinkler goes, or to prop a floppy plant, keep a hose out of a bed or just fill a gap.

 Along the bricks are Ghost Plants. I grow a new plant from every
little leaf that falls off and have dozens to find a home.
He-who-mows, looking for busy work when he couldn't sleep, picked them all up, cleaned and repaired them and put them in the poppy beds on either side of the driveway.
There are tiny colored light bulbs inside. In the dark, they change from red to green to cobalt blue.

 These beds are in transition. Hyacinth foliage is maturing, Brugmansias are just starting to grow. Poppies and Rose Campion in this one with huge plants of Mexican hats that may get a haircut will be replaced by Daturas under the Brugs.

Then the California poppies that this bed boasts die back along with foliage of pink Spider Lilies, Brugs and Daturas will bloom with purple daylilies. Pink Spider Lilies may make an August appearance. They are shy bloomers after they're moved until one magical year when they decide to appear as Naked Ladies. If foliage means anything, this is the year.
Solar lights at night.

April 18, 2013

Work, Busy Work, Getting Rooted Cuttings Planted

I was reading another blug where the writer said she worked outside as long as she could and then went inside to read and write. I go inside to make more lists.

I can cross off my lists the 3 dozen Pentas rooted over the winter.

April, 2012

Everything is later this year. This time last year, pale pink pentas were blooming where I'd set them in this bed, along with tall plants of Verbena on a Stick. Five of these pentas have put out new growth from old roots. I added five rooted cuttings, only two of which are yet brooming. There is one tiny Verbena bonariensis about 2 inches tall.

I doubt it makes any difference to Butterflies if Pentas are planted by color. White Pentas are in the Yellow Rose bed, old joined by new cuttings.

When the Pentas in this bed really get blooming, this Iris will just be spiky foliage.

Rose pink and what we call 'Miss Julie's Favorite' pink are in the Pink Rose bed, again old plants and new.  There were only 3 each of dwarf lavender and dwarf red with a white eye to put under the Magnolia. Red Pentas are in yet another bed.

There are more than a dozen Chartreuse Alternanthera rooted; a tray with several Datura seedlings needs to grow on a bit before they're planted. Brugmansia cuttings are in the ground. They were pale; greening up since planting.

This time last year Brugmansias were much bigger than this year.  The plants were bigger; this precocious Brug cutting has a bloom larger than the plant, so big that the bloom lies on the ground. Plants returning from roots are much bigger and greener, but there are no other signs of buds so far.
The Brug where I found the snake last week is the last to put out leaves, so far just tiny buds have appeared. I wonder if the reptile frightened it out of a month's growth? That's the same bed where I planted rose and pink Pentas today. I carefully pulled the pine straw back with a rake with a long handle before I planted and dug holes with post hole diggers with sharp edges.
Rhipsalidopsis, Easter or Mother's Day Cactus
Most of the rest of the greenhouse plants are Epiphytes that remain in pots, Bromeliads, some Kalanchoes for next winter's bloom and a few other exotics that can take heat and enjoy high humidity since I have to mist to keep temperatures down.
 Linking to Tootsie Time for Fertilizer Friday -- I have to remember to give the newly planted Brugs a bit of fertilizer so they will green on up. Go see what everybody has for the Flower Flaunt and encourage Tootsie, whose father needs prayers.


April 15, 2013

Bloom Day in the Greenhouse April 2013

Spring is really here! There are still plants to set out and plans to make.
I ended up with 3 dozen cuttings at the end.

Graptopetalum and Sedum acre in a broken pot arrangement.

Neoregelia Bromeliad and pink Begonias

Fibrous rooted Begonia cuttings

I keep reading that Impatiens have fallen to a fatal fungus. I learned years back that in this hot climate, impatiens were going to demand oceans of twice-daily watering or they would faint and fall over. Wax-leaf begonias are a tough substitute.

Angel Wing Begonia
Cane Begonias are also easily rooted. I'm going to try planting some outside in the garden.

The Easter Cactus is a bit late. These are the first blooms open and more buds coming. What looks like snow on the Arrowhead vine is sawdust from a carpenter bee, making a nest under the bench.

Orchids are not really in the greenhouse. They prefer the climate in the house.
Orchids are not as finicky as I used to think and the blooms last for months!
Happy Bloom Day.
Bloom Day the Meme -- join at May Dreams Gardens with your host Carol.

Please remember to leave her a message.

April 12, 2013

Random in the Greenhouse

I'm trying to keep the greenhouse at a reasonable temperature until everything inside is ready for planting or a summer outside in part shade.

 Big plants like Epiphyllums are already summering outdoors. I try not to look at them except to water in hopes of discovering buds soon. I made pics but they're just a mass of huge leaves and stems. I repotted the two in small pots. Even cuttings get big and need a heavy pot to stay upright.

Miss Winnie's Easter Cactus finally commenced bloom.
My smaller, rooted Rhipsalidopsis have no buds yet.

Ike's Lemon Grass. He kept the tops chewed off during the winter.
It kept him from shredding things like Bromeliads. 
I planted out the culms I brought in to grow better roots, now these can go out.
Begonia bloom.
Between the Jungle Cacti and Begonias, there
would be plenty of color in the greenhouse
in winter if I planted nothing else.
I could let this Christmas Cactus fruit mature and plant the dustlike seeds....
I watched a video. The tiny seedlings were so precious and then he said 'years' to bloom.
White Begonia cuttings and a Bromeliad.
Daturas from seed, both white and Purple. They need to grow on a just a bit.
I am very fond of nightblooming plants. The shiny black stems on Purple
Daturas give them a really exotic appearance.
Another Amaryllis that I had given up seeing bloom again has put on a bud.
I didn't take a picture; we've looked at Amaryllis buds all winter.
Another Amaryllis planted in the ground outside is about to bloom, a red.

April 11, 2013

Lemon Grass and White Pentas in the Yellow Rose Bed

Cymbopogon citratus is one of the popular garden grasses here. In this clumate it does not set seeds, so no seeding about where it isn't wanted. It does die back in winter but puts out from the roots when warm weather returns. I

In late winter, I pulled up a dead looking clump similar to the one above center and divided the stems into culms. Left in a bucket in the greenhouse with minimal water, it started to put on new roots and growth, come warm days. The clump above wants dividing and replanting for a nicer border.

Lemon Grass culm at bottom left.
Thursday I planted 13 Lemon Grass culms along the edge of one of the rock beds.

White Pentas from 2012.
Several clumps of White Pentas in the Yellow Rose Bed have new foliage from the roots.
I planted 4 more among those clumps for the delight of Butterflies.
My rooted cuttings have roots filling the pots, but not root-bound.
Everything I planted is on the other end of this bed.
At right is Parsley planted last spring, now going to seed.
Butterflies totally ignored my parsley last year. Some years they eat it
to the ground. I hope that happens before it finishes seeding out.

Enough 'Julia Child' blooms are open to catch the fragrance from a distance.
Besides Roses, Lemon Grass, Pentas and Parsley in this bed, the side next the driveway has a row of Yellow Daylilies already putting up scapes.
Joining Tootsie Time for Fertilizer Friday. Fertilizer? I am running so far behind and the blueberries are calling for Fertilizer according to He-Who-Mows. See you!

April 10, 2013

Plans for Greenhouse Summer

The temperature reached 99.5 in the greenhouse today, with ventilating fan and mist. I was able to get it down by a few degrees by opening the vents on top; must watch the plants remaining inside for stress.

Pentas everywhere. Need to get them planted, butterflies are out.

Potted up one Brugmansia yesterday. Pentas await planting once I
decide just how the bed with Red Pentas is going to go. I may make
it smaller this year and omit Gomphrena.
White Pentas cuttings. The Yellow Rose bed Pentas from last year have
great new foliage, too.
Inside, the Easter Cactus is a little late, but putting on buds.

I found an Amaryllis bud on one of last year's plants. Nymph, which bloomed with no foliage, is now putting on new leaves as the last stem turns brown. Begonias are faring okay on the floor where it is
a little cooler.

The pest control crew is at work. Ike the Cat has moved to cooler quaters, creating himself a 'cave'
on the carport under a bench with his winter covers for a tent. Anoles are glad he left the building.
The other day I walked into the greenhouse and a fat toad was sitting in a pot of tiny segments from my Burro's Tail Sedum put to root. He was disgruntled at being made to move. I was not happy about my tiny rootlings being sat upon, either. At least two already had tiny plants forming.
I moved them to a high shelf. The toad hopped off under the potting bench. His name is Delmar.

April 09, 2013

Butterfly Update: Pentas go Outside

Planting out progresses slowly. Pink Pentas went in a bed where last year's pinks are putting up new foliage from the roots.  Not all will return.  Some pink Daylilies were brought out from under a Cycad.

Today I saw a Spicebush Swallowtail had found the Pentas planted yesterday.
Blooms for nectaring are fewer in the garden this week except for lavender Lantana and Bath's Pinks.
I saw a big Tiger Swallowtail on Bath's Pinks this afternoon. Dianthus are attractive to butterflies.
The Hyacinths that were attractive to February's brave Butterflies are now just maturing foliage.
There were only three cuttings each of small lavender Pentas and the red Pentas with an eye.
I don't know why. The Lavender are now in a bed with Persian Shield.

Some of these are pink Pentas now planted out. The lighter pink is what
we call 'Miss Julie's Favorite." My fav is palest pink, but I'm not a
Butterfly. There's still no decision on where red and white will go.

I moved the Pentas nearer the greenhouse door where watering is easier.

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