March 31, 2015

Mule Barn to Have Lights Soon

It takes a while but we're getting there.

LIghts are in place on the left-hand side. Tomorrow we'll wire the right-hand side.
You are not seeing bare wires across there. Cables that brace the building frame criss cross the ceiling. There's  a small chain going across to the girt above the window frames that pulls the vent open and closed in the center of the ceiling.

DSCF9967 from Jean Campbell on Vimeo.
Sometimes I forget that videos must be done with the camera horizontal. Here we are just making sure everything is going to work properly once the lift is inside the Mulre barn.

DSCF9971 from Jean Campbell on Vimeo.
This view is from the tractor seat. The only thing I am allowed to do is stop the engine and start it again. The engine has to run for the lift to work. You can only see the legs of He-Who-Mows as the lift goes up. He did the work along the perimeter on a ladder. This way is cumbersome but a good safe place to stand to use drills and put pipe together.

Small blurry detail of installed wire on the right, wires ready to run through conduit to finish the right side wiring on the left. You can see the ends of the brace cables where they attach to the frame. The big conduit carries the wires that go to the light switch.

Assembling pieces of the outlets.

Outlets are ready.

Mowing is on hold. I tend my plants and things when He-Who takes a break to rest his back. 

We rigged an extension cord to try out the lights after dark comes to see if 4 lights in the ceiling are sufficient. There will be work lights for anything done near the floor. I'm happy. 

March 28, 2015

Greenhouse Peek: Plants That Need New Locations

The succulents that moved outside may feel a chill tonight when the low is 39º F.

These cuttings are from last fall, Pentas and Porterweeds.

I kept a jar of cuttings in water all winter They started as 
a Pentas bouquet. Some have roots now. Others I cut below 
the next node and put in soil to try to coax roots. A Dozen.

The shelf unit has turned again. Plants will be directly under
the mist when warmer weather comes. Maybe tomatoes?

Picked this one Friday. Plant in the greenhouse since August.

Four tomato suckers are ready for a larger pot.
Plan to have tomatoes indoors this summer. 
Not sure yet whether I'll start more at summer's end.

Just what I need: more Amaryllis. Seedlings.

There's always that token Begonia or some other little rooted bit in a cup.
Alternanthera cuttings in mugs of water and pots of soil are ready to 
plant out. Guess what? Some made it through the winter outside. 

Worth the wait: lemon seeds sprouted.

March 26, 2015

Orchids on an Outing

My Orchids went outdoors today. It's easier to water indoor plants if they're outside on a ledge where water can drain away.

Maybe they don't really enjoy a bit of time outdoors.
In my mind, they do. Cloudy day, no chance of sunburn.

Two different Paphs are in bloom and one on the right has a little bloom spike with a mitten and other tiny buds forming. The one we bought at Christmastime has finished and the bloom spike cut back in case it takes a notion to bloom again.

In other news, Tomato plants are tall and leggy and need new and bigger pots again. There are some suckers I could easily pinch out and root.

You need to see Exotica and Apple Blossom. Again. I never tire of them.

Progress on wiring the Mule Barn moves right along. We now have outlets along the shelves but no electricity. Yet. Getting down on the concrete floor to attach conduit and run wires was so miserable for He-Who that I took Buffy's nice comfy dog bed out of the Dog Hut for him to lie on yesterday. Hey, we do what works. 

Today he sat in a chair to attach the outlet wires and tomorrow we're starting on the over head lights and the switch and outlet by the door. Big heavy ladder in place, preliminary plan worked out -- moving right along.   

March 23, 2015

What Blossoms We Missed in the Last Peek

When I posted the Spring peek into the Greenhouse, I missed these beauties completely. I found them today when I moved out the Epiphyllums and relocated the Hippeastrums.

 Burro tail sedum blooms! I could hardly believe it.

How did I miss these?

They were kind of hidden and there are not many of them.

Sedum blooms were revealed when I moved these.

Once the bulky Epis moved out, there was room for all the Amaryllis pots in one place, or so I thought. I discovered another pot, the one that bloomed before Thanksgiving, when I was looking at the Bromeliads, the next project for moving.

Another Apple Blossom bloomed -- the one on the potting bench-- my favorite only because it has fragrance. I love catching that fragrance, especially on days like today when the cat barfed up on the greenhouse floor.

What I thought might be seedlings turned out to be mostly offsets of Exotica that I dug last summer. Some of these have bloomed and have another bud. One that has not bloomed finally has a bud tip showing in the dark pot with the yellow tab. I think it is Spartacus. My best intention is to have every bulb labeled soon.

March 20, 2015

Spring Peek into the Greenhouse

First Day of Spring. I moved 28 pots of Schlumbergeras out yesterday to my improvised urban stone patio. They aren't very attractive out of bloom but worth keeping around for next Winter's Thanksgiving and Christmas blossoms.

Pots of Rhapsalidopsis are still indoors. Only two have buds. Other succulents yet to move are Epiphyllums and Kalanchoes. 

Note the little open hole near the bottom? That's Mr. Kitty's space. He will complain later because I set a pot of rooted Echinacea right where he jumps up on the potting bench. It may be on the floor when I go back.

Bromeliads haven't moved yet. In the foreground is Agapanthus and Lemon grass. I plan to leave the Agapanthus in a pot, just to see. Frosts knock them back here; those in the parking lots at Sams in Tallahassee were nice and green when we were last there. That Graptopetalum at right has buds.

Ghost Plant with buds

Amaryllis seedlings.

Amaryllis seedlings in bud.

This may be Spartacus, or another Apple Blossom.

White Shrimp Plant

Pentas need planting out.
Butterflies are showing up now that Azaleas are starting to bloom.

Alternanthera, some rooted in water, some in soil.

March 18, 2015

Amaryllis and Patio

I am in awe of these Hippeastrums. I dawdled along and never bought new bulbs. I did take time to repot or at least add soil to the big pots at the end of summer.

Benfica and Apple Blossom

I wasn't sure this was Apple Blossom because the color is more intense than the first pot that opened. This one was in the greenhouse, I took the first on into the house to speed its bloom when it was so cold. Or maybe the pale one is not Apple Blossom. This one passed the sniff test: very fragrant.

I spent part of the morning getting ready for greenhouse plants to move out to  shade under the juniper tree. Schlumbergeras and friends will summer here.

Rough shelves around the edges will hold flower pots. I might put a table and chairs there.

March 16, 2015

Birds in a Nest for Foliage Follow Up

New foliage is sprouting out everywhere, inside and out.

Birds Nest Fern with new Birds. This one loves a little shade.

Bromeliad with a friend.

A closer look at froggie.

What? Oh, yes. Foliage.

Stobilanthes and Purple Heart cuttings are about ready to go in the ground. 

March 15, 2015

Bloom Day Peek into the Greenhouse

This time of year we are eager to get things moved out, hesitant to do so because of that inevitable late frost hanging over our heads (and plants) and feeling guilty because we didn't plant more seeds in a timely fashion.

Besides the Amaryllis that finally decided to show up buds, the prettiest thing I have in bloom are Kalanchoes.

I talked about having more colors last year and never bought any with colorful blossoms. I am looking forward to a local FFA plant sale in a little more than a week. I think they will have Kalanchoes.

What I really want is some of their Pelargoniums. Like Kalanchoes, they perform better when cuttings are taken and new plants grown each year. That's one of my favorite garden tasks: taking cuttings.

Amaryllis bloomed: Apple Blossom, Benfica, Nymph and Exotica. Notice another Apple Blossom on the step stool at right and there are more. Also  notice four rooted tomato suckers on the second shelf below the Amaryllis. There are buds on two pots of Amaryllis that I am not sure which are offsets and which are seedlings. If a seedling blooms it will be a first for me. I can tell by the blossoms if they are offsets. Seedlings will be unlike anything else here. I must start labeling better.

  Blooming Pentas cuttings kept over winter and a different view of the 4 tomato plants.

I thought by now that the tomato plant that has prospered in the greenhouse since last July would be done. New growth, new fruits formed and more new blooms are its answer. I have to rig a way to support long vines as the bottom leaves die off and new growth keeps ever upward.

I picked a half pound tomato yesterday. I have to decide which plants will not return to the greenhouse next fall and make sure there is room for the four tomatoes that will grow in pots so we can hope to share tomatoes with the neighbors next winter.

'Exotica' Hippeastrum in front of the Tomato plant.

Happy Bloom Day. Happy Spring.

March 12, 2015

Further DIY Adventures of Tedious and Tinkle in the Mule Barn

Spring just opened right on up while we were in the throes of watching the Mule Barn get built. Now we are inside trying to make it the fun place I dreamed of.

When we're done there will be more than 47 running feet of 2 foot shelving around most of 3 sides at desk top level. Meanwhile there are plants of interest in the greenhouse.

While I was hardly paying attention to the greenhouse, Benfica bloomed.




None of these are new this year. As a matter of fact, Exotica spent a couple of years outdoors and I dug it up last summer. 

Tomatoes are still ripening back there and new 'maters  coming on.

I did manage to take time to root four new tomato plants from suckers and they've already been potted up to bigger pots. Despite all the excitement and activity I tried to keep the watering done and once in a while something got planted or repotted or at least maintained.

Persian Shield and Purple Heart,
Lemon Grass and Bromeliads.

Begonias and friends, a clump of Echinacea and some Rhipsalis still blooming.

One more look into the Mule Barn where I brought in a piece of garden equipment to see how it is going to fit. 

... and I finally located a pic of the Mule (and Buffy). 

Daffodil season has almost flown by without notice except when I go to the mailbox. Today I noticed that Minnow jonquillas have decided to bloom for the first time in years. 

There's lots to see and do in the garden while I am caught up with work with Tedious and dealing with making sure water drains away from the building properly.

We talked today about how Spring seems to have arrived and the always present possibility that a late killing frost will happen on April 15. 

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