20 January 2009

Life in the Undergrowth

Since being in Portland, I've started up a new batch of window babies (aka House Plants) and other propagation experiments. I got a couple cuttings from my grandma, one from Clara's roommates, I found a planter with sempervivum (succulents) on Craigslist for free, and the only plants I bought were some little plants from Ikea and Home Depot. All cuttings have started to root or have started to grow, they're coming out of hibernation from the winter and there is now *tons* of life in our apartment.

I got Wandering Jews (Tradescantia zebrina) from my grandma and Clara's roommate Kenvin. The one from my grandma has wider leaves and more pronounced stripes. These rooted practically straight away!

I was able to plant them fairly soon after getting them because they rooted so fast.

You can see the roots because the bottle is clear plastic. :o)

Free from craigslist, yes, even the big glazed blue pot!

I started some garlic from bulbs that I bought at Trader Joe's. We weren't using them quick enough so they started sprouting. So, thusly, I decided to plant them. Unfortunately my mother later bestowed upon me the knowledge given to her from a large scale garlic grower. The farmer said that most store-bought garlic bulbs harbour a mold. I found this information the day before I found my bulbs breaking up and separating, this is not a good quality in garlic and means it is bad or is going that route.

These last couple photos of two of the garlic are a little like watching a cancer patient decline. It made me sad to watch them go and to pull them up but it was educational.

And these are some photos of my houseplants, they're less exciting stories and less free but definitely a departure from the plants I generally grow. These are all considered tropical and have been interesting to get acquainted with.

I bought a calla lilly growing kit (bulb, peat and pot) from Target with wedding money, which was a very grand departure, never having started anything from a bulb before -- with the exception of potato (okay, a tuber) and garlic. I had trouble with mold on the soil because I had a jar over top to keep it warm, also trapping in the moisture creating the perfect climate for mold. I then figured if I cut some ventilation vents in the bottom of the juice jug there would be more circulation. This has proved to work wonders. There is still a little residual mold dust but it no longer has a fur coat.

Healthy, healthy tuber!

Another Ikea plant, but this is a succulent (I need a succulent encyclopedia or something). It looked pretty sad and sickly at first but then it got better after a bit of TLC and it looks healthy and lovely now.

My grandma also let me have cuttings of her Christmas cactus and a little succulent (also unknown). After much time the little succulent that could *finally* put out a root. I already have the Christmas cactus in soil but the other succulent isn't quite up to it yet but in another week I think he'll be ready.

Itty bitty root!

I also start another potato and for the first time ever a tree from seed. Its an Asian pear tree, which I found the seeds inside of the pear for free (well, slightly more than free but I got to eat the fruit). It poked its head up this morning for the first time!

Alright, three major posts in a week! I probably won't post for a while with the start of school (wednesday!!) but after I get that down things will pick up again I think. I love you all!

1 comment:

Oliver said...

I hope school goes well and feel right for you, good luck. It's so nice to see so many pictures of your life, but I hope one day I will get to see it in person if I ever come to visit. I'm already back in school and busy, busy, busy until I graduate in June.
Cheers to the new year and a new president!