September 21, 2015

Hyacinths for Christmas Bloom

Dutch bulbs were on display in the Big Box store when we were in Alabama today. If bulbs are out in Lower Alabama, they're surely everywhere.

I bought a bag of 15 mixed color bulbs for about ten dollars. I separated them by color, 6 light color and 9 purplish. The dark bulbs may be blue, or they may be dark pink. The white will likely be white or yellow.

Last year, I planted my bulbs before I chilled them. I don't think it matters. It is terribly inconvenient to have pots of bulbs in a refrigerator, even one you don't use every day. I tucked this years' bulbs into paper bags and labeled them including a projected date 10 weeks hence for taking them out to plant.

Pre-potted bulbs come out of the refrigerator with roots growing. Those that were just bagged and chilled might have a few tentative roots, but they catch up quickly once they're potted and watered.

A month after they were brought into a warm environment, last year's Hyacinths were showing promise.

In three months from starting chill, I expect buds showing color.

I hope my timing is such that we'll see color if not open blossoms by Christmas. Last year I almost forgot and I had hyacinths blooming indoors and outdoors in February. I hope this year's lot will be more timely for indoor bloom.

This is how I forced bulbs before we built the greenhouse, in an unheated laundry room in containers of water and stones. I stopped forcing bulbs in water, which works just fine but renders the bulbs almost useless for rebloom. Potted Hyacinths are easily slipped into garden soil outdoors after blooms are spent and will bloom the next year in late winter or early spring.

White Pearl, early 2014.

Now's your chance to have hyacinths blooming this winter, if you start soon.

September 15, 2015

Ignoring Bloom Day

Skipping Bloom Day in the greenhouse while I get ready for winter blooms.

Trying to clean the greenhouse. The top  is scrubbed of black mold. The inside must be washed to remove green mold. The sides and ends are partly cleaned.

Couldn't find the extension pole. Made do with taking a scrub brush off a handle and putting it on the light bulb changing pole. Car wash brushes do not have long enough handles to reach the very top.

Started moving out pots yesterday. All blooming size Amaryllis are outdoors.
Amaryllis needs to dry off and be cut back in hopes of winter bloom.

Guess Amaryllis seedlings will just keep in growing. Wonder what would result from crowding several seedlings in a single pot?

Need to take empty cache pots and other accoutrements outside and clean, then replace.
Think I'll rip down the grapevine swag and lights. Old lights need tossing; replace with some I bought after Christmas last.

Ambitious project. Outside GH landscaping is full of Bermuda grass on the south side and front.

The north side is in pretty good shape; Gardenias have done very well. Calla lilies are dying back.

There was a problem with a credit card yesterday and it was cancelled because, they said, a merchant was trying to charge the card with bogus charges. They're sending a new one. A bulb vendor was to use that card when they get ready to ship my bulbs in a few days. Sigh.

September 13, 2015

Slow Motion

Cooler weather means busy work.

Plants that summered outdoors will be moving back inside when I get the greenhouse washed.

The only Neoregelia to bloom this summer has a pup. Just one so far. I used to pull the pups off when they got a little size to them. Some plants will continue to throw out pups until there's hardly anything left of the original plant. I think I'll leave these in the pot and see if they make a colony the way some of the other Bromeliads do.

 I managed to take a few cuttings. The pelargonium that I bought this summer yielded some nice cuttings.

Besides the geraniums, I have tomato cuttings and Brugmansia cuttings.

I left this Pentas in a pot. Caterpillars almost ate it up. It is recovering. Susie told me that she has no more pale pink Pentas.

 I have only one pale pink Pentas that survived the winter, so I need to take some cuttings of that right away. She also has no white. More cuttings. It is a little late for cuttings but I think they will be warm enough in our September.

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