Winter Vacation…

I can’t wait for winter to end…

I’ve hardly gardened in our yard after being discouraged by some really cold weather… well, relative to our normal weather. We’ve had a couple weeks below freezing, which is normal elsewhere… but is kinda rare for our area.

Here are a few of my indoor winter projects:

Coleus: I’ve been overwintering my Coleus in my bedroom again and I think I now have around 40-60 different cultivars. Several didn’t make it, but most survived, some better than others. I’ve had problems with mealy bugs and ants, and can’t seem to get rid of them. I actually took everything out of my room today and sprayed them off in the back. Hopefully, I got rid of a majority of them.

Orchids: I have also started a small collection of Orchids, which I got as gifts or pass-a-long, or $5 baby plants I got from Home Depot. I recently added a few more with plants I got from the Pacific Orchid Expo which was in San Francisco this weekend.

Cactus: I (re)discovered a package of Cactus seed and planted them…. and they are growing really well.

Mango: I thought I would try planting a Mango seed from a Mango we got from the grocery store, just for the heck of it… I didn’t think it would grow, but surprisingly it grew really really fast. It’s a little more than a month since I planted the seed and the plant is now about 7 inched tall.

Feijoa (Pineapple Guava): I got several seedlings of a very tasty Feijoa, which a grower was giving away at the last scion exchange. I’m trying to grow them and hopefully in a few years, I’ll have my own Feijoa tree.

One other kinda big thing happened last month was that the company I work for moved to the building next door… and luckily my new cubicle has windows!!! Now I can garden at work… and I now have more than half of my overwintering Coleus on my window sill :)

  • 40 of the 48 varieties of coleus I took into winter have survived, and just in the last week they’ve started getting their color back. The weak winter sun up here is pretty hard on them, so I supplemented with lights this time. Overall, I’m happy…those that didn’t make it just make room for more. :) Almost time for another order to Rosy Dawn!

    • Wow Jay, you have quite a few Coleus! Mine have been living on two shelves under fluorescent lights in my bedroom, and were starting to fill out too much… so to make more room I’ve brought most to work (luckily, we moved building and I got a window cubicle). I’m pretty happy with mine too, but get sad when one doesn’t make it (damn mealybugs!!!). They still have their muted winter color, but as I recall they spring back to their vividness when spring comes.

      I haven’t placed my Rosy Dawn order yet… I put it off when I found out they discontinued the one Coleus I really wanted to get (Coleus ‘Joey’).

      Good luck with yours :)

  • My orchids have scale, and my Faucaria has mealy bugs, so you have my sympathy. The orchids might recover if I could be more consistent in watering them, but every time they start to get healthier, I am a bad plant mommy again, and the scale comes back. That, and the timer on their grow light was broken (this house doesn’t get as much direct light as they need). I got the timer replaced, and I’ve been diligent about watering the last two weeks. If I can keep it up another two, I’m hoping I’ll have it licked.

    Speaking of orchids, I have some that are going to need homes in a month or two. Are you interested? And I always have succulents that need homes.

    • I totally understand… I was a bad plant mommy too and didn’t get rid of the mealy bugs right when I discovered them. Luckily my Orchid doesn’t have bugs, but one of them had an infestation of ants living in the bark… so I just dunked it in water for a while and that seemed to solve the problem.

      You know what’s funny… I got a timer, but didn’t use it because my fluorescent light plug have a ground and it won’t fit into it… so I just turn it one when I leave for work and turn it off a little after I get home.

      Am I interested?… that’s a silly question :P… of source I am :) Why? are you moving again?

  • Would you recommend some coleus cultivars that have nice brown/purple bits to them? I want to do a mixed planting as a gift for a friend, and she likes chocolate-browns and rosy pinks.

    • Hmm… I’m not sure of any brown Coleus, but ‘Mocha Mint‘ comes to mind. I had a purple/plum/pink one last year called ‘Trailing Plum Brocade‘ which had a pretty color. Unfortunately it died, but I plan on getting it again this year because of it’s color and Begonia-like texture.

  • Hey I still need to send you Dragon Fruit seeds! email me your address and I will :)

    megzzz [at] gmail [dot] com

    • Hey Meighan, thanks for reminding me. My Cactus seedlings are getting bigger and I have to take photos of them now. They are so cute…

      …and speaking of cute… Don Juan is sooooo cute!!! I love your new userpic!