Anything You Wanna Talk About IV (Prolly mostly OT)

tapla (mid-MI z5b-6a)November 23, 2012

Just a continuation of a series thread to gather and talk about whatever ...... like the last one. It doesn't necessarily have to be about plants - there are plenty of threads devoted to that.


Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
tapla (mid-MI z5b-6a)

Technico. You asked O(before the thread was continued), Hello Al , ok , but have read the recomended one is the calcinated DE , so makes no diferences if its calcianted or not ???? and that means that calcinated montmorolomolite clay is also good as turface substitute?

If it's not calcined (fired at high temps) the product won't be structurally stable, so yes, it does matter.

Turface IS calcined Montmorillonite clay, so other products made from the same types of materials, fired at high enough temps, and in the right size range would be suitable substitutes.


Here is a link that might be useful: More answers scatter throughout this & related threads:

    Bookmark   November 23, 2012 at 2:46PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Speaking of women in combat sports, Al, did you see that Rowdy Ronda Rousey is the first female to officially join the ranks of the UFC? Let's hear it for the ladies!! Yeah!! It's about time Dana White realized the fan base, the interest, the butts they'll put in arena seats, and the money to be made... and let's face it, there are some wicked female fighters out there! :-)

Ronda fights at bantamweight, so I wonder who her first UFC opponent will be?

JoJo, I vote for Laila Ali, as well, for a box turtle name... Laila is a super boxer! Though, Freeda Foreman can hold her own in the ring, too!

Tecnico, it was my pleasure to try to help in the other thread. I've tried/used just about every soil/medium type out there, and I've followed many different "schools of thought" on both the soil and the watering issues... and in all my decades of growing containerized plants, it never really occurred to me that the gardening industry is the same as any other. Most companies are purely in business to make a profit, and that means consumers must be made to come back frequently to spend more money... on plants that die, soil to re-pot with, fancy fertilizers, etc... everything is marketed to appeal to us, the human gardener, and not the plants. And not everything sold is created with plants' health in mind.

Several years ago, in my darkest hour as an Amaryllid grower, stumped at why my bulbs were rotting and I couldn't grow a decent set of roots on anything, I stumbled across Al's original article entitled, "Container Soils - Water Movement & Retention"... and it was an epic moment for me! It was like an epiphany!

And the more I read, the more I realized that I had been following myths, fallacies, old wives' tales, opinions that had nothing to do with my unique growing situation, and for the most part, going along with industry standards and misinformation!

Al is all about the science... the basics of simple plant science and physics. Pure logic and reason.

I changed my course, and haven't looked back. I consider Al to be not only a good friend and a person of respectable character, but a knowledgeable, educated, generous, and helpful mentor. I became a student of his teachings, reading his articles and posts with relish, learning as much as I could about general science of growing plants in containers.

I wish I had known so many years ago that there are worlds of difference between growing in the ground and growing in pots... that there is no one-size-fits-all when it comes to growing... and that a "green thumb" is really nothing more than applied knowledge!

And some might say, "you just sing his praises because he's your friend"... and they'd be wrong. I respect him as a grower and teacher because of his honesty, his experience, the results he, himself, obtains using certain proven methods... and if I couldn't get decent results following his advice, I would tell him so.

Ask most people who frequent this forum, and they'll tell you that his respect is well earned.

Anyway... I use what I call a "custom rendition" of the Gritty Mix to grow my indoor plants. My own indoor environment, being unlike anyone else's, demands that I make a few slight adjustments in terms of ingredients and ratios... but the concept remains the same. I understand exactly why I'm using this type of medium, and how it works. And those are the important points.

There's no hard and fast rule that says everyone must change their ways... and many people prefer using a bagged soil because it's convenient to do so, and they're satisfied with the results they get. And that's fine. We have to do what works for each of us.

I'll never be satisfied with mediocre again, and I don't care a fig about convenience. I want epic results, and I know that knowledge is power. Facts and science beat opinion and tradition every time.

It took a little getting used to when I first changed from using a peaty, silty bagged mix to making my own medium using a mix of larger particulate, but once I got past that short learning curve, I realized that this new methodology actually gives me more room for error. It's much more difficult to over-water, which is one of the most common killers of potted plants there is.

Watering from the top gives me several good things, as I mentioned in the other thread... it allows for the necessary exchange of gases and fresh oxygen to the root zone, it allows the medium to be evenly and thoroughly wetted, and it allows me an opportunity to check each plant carefully for signs of other issues... such as insects, fungi, disease, or any other problems. It also allows me to notice new growth, buds forming, when it's time to pollinate if I want to breed a particular bulb, etc.

With a larger particulate used as medium, I would highly recommend watering from the top. Some folks take each plant to the sink for watering, but I water using a watering can with a long, slim spout... so I can water large or small pots... covering the entire surface as I water... and then I allow a little time to pass before emptying the excess water from the saucers, so any needed water can be absorbed. I never leave pots sitting in water longer than a couple of hours.

That's just my method, which might not work well for everyone. Remember... there is no such thing as one-size-fits-all.

I think, though, that once we understand why we do the things we do, we have a much better chance of adjusting various methods to fit our unique growing situations.

I trust everyone had a good Thanksgiving? We stayed home and made lean burgers sans buns on the George Foreman, and had a wild rice and veggie dish to go with. We're all about eating healthier, more natural, and feeling better. I love the traditional foods of the holidays, but my system does not!

We've elected to go north for Christmas... we usually go for Thanksgiving, too, but just couldn't swing two trips this year. We'd rather be there to see the grandkids open presents, and spend a few days enjoying family, friends, and stuffing ourselves with foods we normally don't eat!

Well... I think I might take a nap... I've done my chores for the day, and I just feel tired. If I missed responding to anything... I do apologize.

Happy Growing, Everyone! :-)

    Bookmark   November 23, 2012 at 4:55PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

What a great shot...

    Bookmark   November 24, 2012 at 12:24AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Al, how do you compare the CEC score of fired clays to turface?
there is no turface where i live, and although i have been able to get together a very good gritty mix, i need more data to work with concerning feeding (a professional deformation, i'm a molecular biologist by trade, we have to have everything down to the nanogram). the fact that i've never seen turface doesn't help either.

i'm primarily growing adeniums, who have very different water and nutrition needs for seedlings and grown up plants. i think my mix is okay for grown up plants, but for small seedlings i've already had to tweak it a bit by adding more pine bark to make it more moisture retentive. and this is for winter growing, who knows how it will fare in the summer, but i'll solve that when i get to it.

in place of turface i'm using liapor ( 1-4mm for seedlings, and 5-10mm for older plants.
i'm thinking of adding zeolite as a higher cec scoring component, it is also more moisture retentive than liapor.
but before tweaking more i'd really like to have an idea how many nutrients are actually retained by the mix.
also, while i understand that water vapor between the particles of the mix will keep the roots from drying out, i think the proton pumps across the membranes do not work and ion exchange does not happen without a true film of water between roots and nutrient retaining particles. do you think the ion exchange is over by the time the medium dries out that much?

before i discovered your mix, and especially threads that explain the logic behind it, i've tried our about a dozen similar gritty mixes, using locally available materials. none were nowhere near this good, mainly because i always had the feeling that one must always add a part of cactus soil or whichever crap is recommended in most books. i think the biggest difference was the pine bark, adeniums seem to love the massive amount of air that gets between particles of bark.
sorry if i'm being to much of a pain, these are just details, the difference is already more than visible and i thank you for that!

    Bookmark   November 24, 2012 at 1:49PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
tapla (mid-MI z5b-6a)

Turface IS a fired clay. If you meant to compare the CEC of fired DE to clay, the fired DE is a little better - no doubt due to its increased surface area. My guess is that the Liapor would have about 2/3 the CEC of Turface and about 1/2 that of calcined DE - but that is just a guess after looking at a picture too small. I base the guess on the fact that the Liapor appears to be more like our Haydite than Turface, and Haydite has a far lower CEC than Turface.

If you live in Europe, you might look into Seramis. Two years ago, I helped the City of Paris develop a soil for their street tree container plantings, and one of the ingredients was Seramis.

I don't see how ionic exchange would be possible w/o a film of water on colloidal surfaces.

I'm glad you like the gritty mix for your DRs. I have only 3 or 4 that I started a couple of years ago in the gritty mix as seeds. I'll probably give all but 1 away, due to room issues and the fact I need to pare down the number of plants I have. All are in very shallow pots ..... terra cotta collection saucers, in fact, and doing well. It's very difficult to grow DRs in shallow containers if the soil supports perched water, but these have done fine - even through the wet/cool fall before I brought them in.

Best to you.


    Bookmark   November 25, 2012 at 9:13AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
tapla (mid-MI z5b-6a)

O gosh! I wanted to remember to say thanks to Jodi for her very kind words, and to mention how cool is Rina's shot of the English sparrows. That was a great catch.

We had our first snowfall overnight - woke to about 3" on the ground. I topped off the bird/suet feeders yesterday, and the birds are really flocking to the feeders today. I'm not sure why, but it just seems so much more rewarding to watch the birds at the feeders when there is snow on the ground.


One of my buddies, looking for a handout:

    Bookmark   November 25, 2012 at 9:26AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
jojosplants(9/ Tucson, Az.)

I love the bird pictures Al!
I got to hand raise 2 of our little parrots this summer, I'll have to see if I have any pics I can post. Right now I have Diamond Doves cooing in the living room. :-) I still have a few of my favorite quail and will hatch more for spring. My birds in side and the wild bring me endless joy!
Thank you for your help with the Hyper Tufa. I was wanting to place them in the yard and build around the beds as I went, but if they have to be out of the sun, that creates a problem. They would have till spring to cure, so making them now wouldn't be that big of a deal.
My garden beds have reached a point of over flow. lol.. when I turn them and add compost, they spill over into the yard which is gravel. So I want to make them raised about 1'.

Rina~ I love the picture you posted! I have it on my Facebook page with a caption of the one bird telling the other to shut up. lol..

Josh~Mike~what have you too been up to!?!

Josh~ I hope you didn't come down with a cold after your soggy day at the festival. I had to laugh at that one and pictured a bunch of soggy die hards running for their cars. lol..

Mike~ Tell mom Hi!
I still need to look through my pics. Haven't forgot. :-) just easily sidetracked. lol. I can't upload them to the house computer any more! So I have to see what is left in photobucket or new on the lap top.

Snow!! Al~ No thank you!! Brrrrrrrrrrrrr... LOL! Gosh , we are still in the high 70's low 80's. Stay warm! :-) I just got mint to put in the garden and am going to try some in the house over winter too.

I need to get motivated, and get some things done today. Laundry for one. lol..
Have a great day everyone!

    Bookmark   November 25, 2012 at 11:05AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Al and other members got an idea : ) , what would you think if to regular pots besides the drain holes that are at the bottom can one make holes on the SIDES of the pots not much of course : P jeje , but lets say at least 4 in a north, south , west. east areas ( just so you get the idea where they would be : ) ) so the roots of the plants get even more air-oxygen on the roots, eventhough the 5-1-1 and gritty mix already are good for aireation of the roots, would this idea make more benefits to the plants ???? looks like a good idea or not ? would like your opinions / recomendations on this : )

    Bookmark   November 25, 2012 at 1:18PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
tapla (mid-MI z5b-6a)

You're welcome, JJ - glad to help.

Technico - I don't think it would make a significant advantage, and especially not if you're using well-aerated soils that already offer good gas exchange. If you had a large number of holes, so evaporative water loss was increased notably, it would make more difference - especially if using a water-retentive soil.


    Bookmark   November 25, 2012 at 2:01PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

ohhh ok :( thought made a good discovery : ) ja ja ja , but its tru Al more holes and by the side more evaporation so more frequent watering : /

    Bookmark   November 25, 2012 at 4:13PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

ok an what about the UPS-A-DAISY

looks a good idea , for better aireation ; so how would you think, Al, this instead of the side holes ? cause as you can see in the pictures it makes a "air space" and the holes are as usual in the pot ( drain holes ) so no water would evaporate ; so what are the thoughts about this product to use in conjuction with either the 511 or GM ( gritty mix )

Here is a link that might be useful: ups a daisly page

    Bookmark   November 25, 2012 at 4:33PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Birds? I think you all know how I feel about birds!
Jojo, you are right. There is something about having them inside that makes one smile! I have a green singing finch, a yellow bak one, and a parrot. They love to create sounds, lol, even in the dead of winter. Oh , at times it sounds like I have a 'Mocking Bird' inside my home first thing in the morning:-)

Al, I LOVE those birds and the pics you post. Thank you and my Mom says thank you....By the way, you are also my mentor, and Jodik couldn't of worded it better about how we feel about you. Always a thank you from me for having a part of my success for the first time. First off I love that picture and second, it looks as if the bird is trying to shut the other up from talking about Very nice!

Jojo, we are here and a HUG hello from Mom and I! Take your time. I am just glad you are back and soon with your pics too:-)

Jodik, those women fighting sounds kine of, well,
Let me know when it starts.
It sounds like you have made a good decision about going north. And then, you can keep driving and visit us...

SNOW!!!!? Al, please, you poor thing. What a difference compared to last year. I was still wearing my shorts through most of the winter. Not this year:(

I like the name too by the Jojo! I love that little turtle. Some day I hope to own one:-)

Ok, I need to work on getting you a package together Jojo. Don't think I forgot you. I am just lazy at times.

Many goodnights to all and hug from Mom to all her friends here.

Where's Josh these days. By the way, if anyone gets a chance, please check out my citrus trees all ready for winter. i couldn't of sone it without the knowledge gave me or the mixes!


Here is a link that might be useful: My citrus trees in for winter

    Bookmark   November 25, 2012 at 5:31PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

In my humble opinion, you're only cheating yourself, and more importantly, your plants, out of extra space for roots to colonize and spread out with those "ups-a-daisy" things. I like the same medium from top to bottom... no gravel layer, because that's another old wive's tale... because changing up layers anywhere within that pot, by way of simple physics, creates, or can create, a perched water table... and a PWT holds extra moisture that we want to exit the pot.

It comes to my mind that anything can and will be marketed to the public... but not when we understand what truly happens within the confined space of a containerized planting. In other words, the more we know, the less we can be fooled by industries out to make money by taking advantage of our lack of knowledge. Many years ago, I would have bought into lot of the items sold... but today, I realize that it takes very little to grow beautiful, healthy plants. Simplicity through science and physics.

I've also tried the "orchid" type pots with slits... and the medium dries out way too quickly. Now, again, this is going to be dependent upon the variables within your own growing environment. If you're growing orchids in a highly humid greenhouse that gets misted or hosed down frequently, those slits might serve their purpose. Otherwise, they do not.

Happy Growing! :-)

    Bookmark   November 25, 2012 at 5:34PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Oh, and... it's no big thing, Al... I just tell it like it is. :-) You have been the single most positive influence in my growth as a gardener. You have opened my eyes, and made me want to learn more, to grow better plants! You have raised the bar... and I'm up to the challenge! :-)

I must say... you've not only made me want to learn more about plants and container growing, but about a lot of other things, as well. Knowledge is truly power... and with age comes wisdom, if you're willing to open your mind and let it in. :-)

    Bookmark   November 25, 2012 at 6:08PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
jojosplants(9/ Tucson, Az.)

what Jodi said. :-)

And I have a handful of others here to be Grateful for, for my constant learning..
Mike, Josh, and of coarse.. My Twin, Jodi. ;-) and the friendships that go along with the learning and sharing are priceless!


    Bookmark   November 25, 2012 at 6:35PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo


Sorry I forgot to say that I did not take the photo of the birds...actually, don't know who did so can't give a credit due (I received it from a friend). It is great photo, am sure not easy to could die of old age waiting to get such a shot...JoJo, I titled it same as you...


    Bookmark   November 25, 2012 at 11:47PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
Loveplants2 8b Virginia Beach, Virginia

Hello Everyone..


Even if it wasn't your pic, i still think it is one for the books!! Evertime i look at it, it reminds me of my best friend saying to me at times to just. Shuusshhhh!! ! LOl.. I do love it when he says that, but to see the actual bird using his talon to make it a point makes me laugh.. that is priceless! It is like when one takes their hand and places it on the lips to get you to stop talking.. how sweet.. ;-)

So... If we are giving thanks this weekend... I want to give my thanks to Al as well...

Thank you Al for giving me the courage to make my life changes with all of my beloved plants and trees. My knowleged of my soils, watering habits, sunshine, when to prune, and overall patience that you have taught me. The big reward is to finally know that when i think of you and wonder "WWAD" i already know the answer.. That tells me that i am on my way to understanding your teachings and i will say that i am a very happy camper to be in my shoes because of you!! So Thank You for all that you have taught to me and others.. I will always be learning from you and hoping i can always learn..and teach.... that is what life is about eh? Mahalo!!! ;-)


Listen to Al and why he doen't think these ideas will work well for you. Jodi has some good points as well.. I feel that as long as you have good drainage and you are using a fast draining mix, then you will be fine. When i hear you talking about adding holes around the outer perimiter of the remind me of "sink" pots of Plumeria or "plunging" them into the ground to let the earth act as a giant wick. But for regular containers, let them be. they will work well for you with the fast draining mix. I saw your other post about screens, i see AL posted under that one for me and im glad he did.. i will post some other tools that i find helpful for you!! I actually use a strainer from the large dept stores..(Walmart..etc) for straing the fines from the Turface. I will also use this for the granite if needed..

good Luck!!

OK..WHo said snow? Im working in the northeast on Tuesday and they are calling for 2-5 inches in PHL... Mike was that you? Jojo? LOL.. or was it AL? Hmmmm?

I will be flying out of Newark and in and around Philly that day.. so i guess i will put on my "just relax" attitude and just go with the flow.... LMAO!!

OK..Birds,, Mike and Jojo.. God love ya. I love birds, but they don;t like me. I can be inside for only five minutes and i start to sneeze.. i love these little guys, i had a cockatiel for 7 mts.. i tried to not notice the allergies, but i finally had to surrender.. My brother took her and she lived with them until she passed..20 years..

You guys were talking about Praying mantis.. California Praying Mantis love Plumeria!! They have great taste.. ;-)

i have a pic from a friend who would love for me to show..

Quite beautiful..

Take care everyone..


compliments to my dear friend, Simi!! Mahalo!!! ;)

Have a wonderful night..

Jodi.. i forgot to say that i hope you are feeling better.. Im thinking of you often!!

Mike ..Thank you for my Beautiful Bonsia Maple.. I LOVE IT!!! It is already potted up for the winter and then in the spring a will transfer to a training container.. Thank you soooo much!! I can wait to see this beauty!! You are so kind!! I can see it has lots of potential!!! Thank you so much!!! :-)


    Bookmark   November 26, 2012 at 1:35AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Thanks, Laura... I live day to day, and some days are much better than others! It's all just part and parcel of my health issues, and I've gotten as used to it as I can. I try not to complain too much!

Praying mantises... I did manage to locate a few pictures... these are from a few years ago...

The bird photos are really nice... I try to get close enough to capture the hummingbirds here, but I never seem able to get a clear shot!

The mantises will hold still for their photo shots! Those are gorgeous Plumies with the mantises, Laura!

It's been getting chilly here, but no ice or snow as of yet! I'm thankful for that!

Mike, when I say we're going north, I mean a 4 hour drive, which is hard enough on us... I'd love to make a sharp right and keep heading east until we got to your house, but a ride that long would render us utterly useless and require a 3 day recovery! Our little car is great on gas mileage, but not so much on comfort!

Oh, and by the way, I've lost the ability to create smiley faces... my keyboard is dying a slow death, key by key... time for a new one!

JoJo said, "...the friendships that go along with the learning and sharing are priceless!" Absolutely, JoJo!

Have a great day, everyone!

    Bookmark   November 26, 2012 at 8:18AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Pardon the pun Jodi & Laura but those are some killer bug pics I especially like the one where the guy meets up with his date for lunch.

tecnico I think it was a couple years ago: Subject was how a bag turns into a pot and then called Topsy Turvy. It was highly marketed and stated if used we would all grow more tomatoes up side down and save space than if we where to grow them upside correctly.

Now it's UPS A DAISY for any house plant. What will they come up with next ? It seems the odd container selections have no limits these days.

The ups a daisy reminds me of in a micro version of the lower Manhattan water ways on the lower half of pot and then I imagine something with roots breathing in the inert staggering gases of lower waters trying to grow a plant on top.
In more critical comments the ups a daisy appears to be nothing more than an overly high priced plastic swc that will help it's marketers increase corporate profits. I'd rather drill a hole at the bottom of my cats food dish than to depend on this one.

    Bookmark   November 26, 2012 at 10:49AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
greenman28 NorCal 7b/8a


Yes, Thanksgiving was wonderful and busy! 'Twas held at my brother's in Sacramento,
and so I didn't have computer access like I usually do. I've been visiting friends as well,
and squeezing in as much outdoor hiking as possible. We've had three inches of rain, and
there are mushrooms and ferns (Polypody and Goldback) erupting along the trailsides.

JoJo, Jodi, Laura, Al, Mike, Wes, Conrad, Rina...great to see you all! And thanks for inquiring
after me in recent postings. Wes, I think you left a nice comment about all the moss on the trees
where I live - thanks! It's really a unique area here in the foothills...we enjoy moss and moisture,
as well as the dry brunt of a brutal Summer.

Interesting that the talk has been on Amaryllis...I have some seeds in a pot of gritty mix right now,
but I don't know if they'll sprout or not. Just an experiment with my Naked Lady lilies ;-)

If you haven't seen Mike's citrus rooms yet, you should! You can almost smell all of those blooms.
One of my lemon trees is about to open a wave of blooms, and I look forward to being able to share.
In the meantime, the last of my hot peppers are currently hiding out in my Citrus cold-frame....and the
Citrus are hanging out near the door leading to the back deck. Anyhow, here's a video of some peppers....

Hot peppers - in the cold-frame

Out hiking the other day, I snapped this pic....not the best due to the brightness of the sun
and the sky, but you can see how our hills glow with the golden light of the Black Oaks.

    Bookmark   November 26, 2012 at 11:23AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Jodi, Laura -
really nice photos of 'bugs & flowers'.
Mantises love photo-ops, don't they. And they are photogenic too...
I fell in love with plumerias after seeing Laura's photos.

Josh -
your hiking photos are great, love ones you posted with moss on trees, fantastic green color.
Enchanted forrest for sure.

I like to watch the birds & have put up some nesting boxes and now feeders for the winter.
Many regulars visiting here: blue jays, chickadees, red-breasted and white-breasted nuthaches, juncos, yellow and house finches, cardinals, woodpeckers, few different kinds of sparrow.
Occasionally, cedar waxwings and thrush come to nibble on juniper berries.
Robins are great to see - sure sign of spring, so are baltimore orioles. They come to get some nectar from a trumpet vine - amazingly smart birds, they just poke hole thru the bottom of the flower to get to it.
Hummers like trumpet vine too. I always put out feeders for hummers, not having luck taking a good photo of them either.

Hawk visits occasionally, sits on the maple tree while all birds just dissapear in split second.
There is a peregrine falcon family nesting high on the office building about 4 blocks away, have been there for number of years.

And blackbirds and starlings...and a pair of ducks stops for a day or two every spring.
Probably forgot some others.

There is a family of crows living in pine trees that I can see with binoculars (neighbour's about 3 houses behind me).
Extremely smart birds.
My daughter loves crows - here is a painting she did (not a very good photo, taken inside with some lights reflecting):

Amazing, how many different birds one can see in the city.

    Bookmark   November 26, 2012 at 1:23PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Well said, Mrlike2u! And I think corporate CEO's and stockholders get enough of our hard earned money, as it is! But that's another subject for another forum.

Several years ago, my husband ordered one Mantis egg case, and they've literally multiplied and spread from one end of the acres of gardens here, to the other! They do earn their reputation as great hunters! I enjoy watching them... hunt, not breed! LOL!

Josh, those are fantastic shots, the video and the picture! I can't believe how long you've had those peppers! Amazing!

Very nice painting, Rina! I like it!

It's so nice to see everyone show up and just talk like this... I like this thread!

Time to eat while my dinner is hot! Have a wonderful evening, everyone!

    Bookmark   November 26, 2012 at 8:44PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Oh my!

I am too tired to respond after all this reading, but I love you all and thanks so much for being here!

I LOVE LOVE the praying mantises! Oh thank you so much my friends!

I'll be back to share my thoughts about your posts! Nite


    Bookmark   November 26, 2012 at 9:47PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

A DEA Officer stopped at out farm yesterday.
"I need to inspect your farm for illegal growing drugs."

I said, "okay, but don't go in that field over there."

The DEA officer verbally exploded saying, "Mister I have the authority of the Federal Government with me!" Reaching into his rear pants pocket, the arrogant officer removed his badge and shoved it in my face. "See this badge?! This badge means I am allowed to go wherever I wish...on any land!! No questions asked or answers given!! Have I made myself clear?...Do you understand?!!"

I nodded politely, apologized, and went about my chores. A short time later, I heard loud screams, looked up, and saw the DEA Officer running for his life, being chased by my big ol mean bull......With every step the bull was gaining ground on the Officer, and it seemed likely he'd sure enough get gored before he reached safety. The Officer was terrified.

I threw down my tools, ran toward the fence and yelled at the top of my lungs.........................................................................................

"Your badge, show him your BADGE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!"

    Bookmark   November 27, 2012 at 12:04PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

ROFL!! I love it! I realize it's a joke... but it would serve him right! Common courtesy goes a long way...

And now that I've just spit coffee everywhere... I think it's time I got my chores done... I'm gonna chuckle all day!

    Bookmark   November 27, 2012 at 12:16PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo


Thank you for nice comment on my daughter's about this one?

"The Fox Artist"


    Bookmark   November 27, 2012 at 10:09PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
Loveplants2 8b Virginia Beach, Virginia


I really like this one too! But i can see some interesting details and i love the extras that you have to search to find.. Quite lovely!! She is very talented!! I know you are one proud Mom!!

Josh.. love your pic of the beautiful hiking trail. When i want to find places like that, i have to drive to the Shenanndoah Valley near the Appalatian Trail. That is our spot near Geroge Washinton National Forest. Love the views.. It take me a few hours from the ocean to the mountains, but it is worth it to see such beauty!!!

I haven't checked the video on the Peppers yet.. but i will and im sure they are fantastic!!!

Nice to see everyone and i hope you all had a wonderful Thanksgiving with your families!!

Wes.. loved you stories... "show him the badge.. " LMAO!! That was awesome!!! Thanks for the comments on the mantis.. they are cool.. my friend is giving me some egg sacks at the end of December to place around my greenhouse in hopes that they will be happy and grow once spring arrives.. This will be the first time i have been given egg sacks form the Mantis.. Any other hints?

Jodi.. All we can do is to take it one day at a time.. I find that that is what im doing.. i think it clears my head and relaxes me more.. I cant make any other changes, so i live for tomorrow and what happens later, well it will happen... :-)

Take care,


    Bookmark   November 28, 2012 at 12:56AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Laura -

Thank you.
She does have interesting imagination.
I too like details, little bit of Steampunk in there...

Well, I can't resist bragging, I am posting one more (promise I'll stop...sorry about photo quality/lights glare).

    Bookmark   November 28, 2012 at 7:58AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I must say, Rina, I am blown away by the composition of the paintings! They speak to me in a rather personal way. Before my eyesight began to get worse, I designed and made jewelry and did a lot of beadwork! Some of my favorite components to work with are antique pieces, old keys, silver chain, marcasite, old pearls and crystals, etc... the odd or unique.

Painting is something I always wanted to do, but I could never get what I saw in my mind's eye to come out through my hand on canvas. I'm a terrible artist in that respect... I can't draw, so crafting and gardening became my outlets.

Your daughter is extremely talented! I love her work! You must be so proud!

Laura, I'm one of those gardeners that allows fall debris to pile up in the gardens as extra protection, and I leave cleaning for early spring. When I do so, I'm very careful to save every mantis egg case I find and place it next to the foundation of the garage so it won't be further disturbed, and the babies can hatch. They look like tiny light green grasshoppers for a while, before maturing.

I use the barest minimum of chemicals in the gardens so as not to harm the mantises... the unfortunate thing is, aphids attack the tender new growth on some roses the moment the weather turns decent, so I'm forced to use a bit of systemic to save those roses from destruction. Elsewhere, I use nothing... except a mole trap for the high numbers of those here.

In spite of the tiny bit of systemic I've used, the mantises have spread to the farthest reaches of our gardens. The population is amazing, really! Actually, we have a very nice balance of predators in the gardens. The only bug nothing seems to want to eat is the Japanese beetle! I guess we can't have everything, though!

I find the majority of egg cases in Russian Sage, Hyssop, Rudbeckia, Monarda, and attached to the Viburnum bush next to the garage garden area. They seem to like those types of plants, for some reason... which is why I leave the dried stems over winter.

Honestly, Rina, I could go for more of your daughter's work... does she have a website? It's incredibly intriguing to me! It has all the elements I love.

Well... time to get the dog fed and get moving for the day... have a good one, everyone!

    Bookmark   November 28, 2012 at 10:32AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

mrlike2u great story about the bull and the officer : D

    Bookmark   November 28, 2012 at 10:35AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
tapla (mid-MI z5b-6a)

Cool pictures by all. Nice to see everyone kicking back.

My Grandpa was a pip (not to be confused with - well .....

The IRS had decided to audit my Grandpa, and had summoned him to the IRS office. The auditor was not surprised when Grandpa showed up with his attorney, and here's exactly what happened - no lies, and exactly as related by that very same attorney.

The auditor started the conference by saying, 'Well, sir, you have an extravagant lifestyle and no full-time employment, which you explain by saying that you win money gambling. I'm not sure the IRS finds that believable.'

'I'm a great gambler, and I can prove it,' says Grandpa. 'How about I offer you a demonstration?'

The auditor thinks for a moment and said, 'Okay, go ahead.'

Grandpa says, 'I'll bet you a thousand dollars that I can
bite my own eye.'

The auditor thinks a moment and says, 'It's a bet.'

Grandpa removes his glass eye and bites it. The auditor's jaw drops.

Grandpa says, 'Now, I'll bet you two thousand dollars that I can bite my other eye.'

Now the auditor can tell Grandpa isn't blind, so he takes the bet.

Grandpa removes his dentures and bites his good eye. The stunned auditor now realizes he has wagered and lost three grand, with Grandpa's attorney as a witness. He starts to sweat.

'Want to go double or nothing?' Grandpa asks. 'I'll bet you six thousand dollars that I can stand on one side of your desk, and pee into that wastebasket on the other side, and never get a drop anywhere in between.'

The auditor, twice burned, is cautious now, but he looks carefully and decides there's no way this old guy could possibly manage that stunt, so he agrees again.

Grandpa stands beside the desk and unzips his pants. He strains mightily, he can't make the stream reach the wastebasket on the other side, so he pretty much urinates all over the auditor's desk, adding machine - pencil cup filled .....

The auditor leaps with joy, realizing that he has just turned a major loss into a huge win. But Grandpa's attorney moans and puts his head in his hands.

'Are you okay?' the auditor asks.

'Not really,' says the attorney. 'This morning on the way over, he bet me twenty-five thousand dollars that he
could come in here and pee all over your desk, and that you'd be happy about it!'color>


    Bookmark   November 28, 2012 at 4:50PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo


Thank you again for such nice comments. I like her work - but obviously, I am biased...the web site shows some of her work (not all yet); it is (hope I am not breaking any rules by posting).
I think you would get along very well, she likes things you mentioned too.
And anything to do with animals, birds...

Recently she had some Halloween-themed paintings on display (they are not on website yet), so here are few:
(I appologize for breaking my promise about not posting any more!!!)

- and The Bride is stitching herself up, I have to get better photo:

- and 'frazzled' Mummy:

    Bookmark   November 28, 2012 at 5:06PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Al , that sory is great : D wowww , this is for sure a good one , this has gotten the best thread around , and as you said Al, it is not necesary to talk about plants to make one smile : )

    Bookmark   November 28, 2012 at 5:56PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

And she does tattoo art, as well! Yes, I'd say we'd get along famously, Rina! Thank you for sharing more of her work!

I've been collecting skin art since I was 30, a late bloomer, and all of it is custom work by an artist who hails from the east coast of the US. His art includes photography, painting, and tattooing in a very gothic, macabre style, as well. He loves the scary, the gory, but can as easily ink anything asked of him. He's a true artist.

I would share my tattoos, but since they are one of a kind, I'd rather not display them online... I'm sure you can understand. Let's just say that together, they tell the story of who I am, what I believe in, and who holds my heart... all in original artwork using symbolism heavily. One is a dream catcher sketching my life and family, one depicts my struggle with belief, and others include important things in my life... I'm not complete as a canvas, and would love add other things I love. No wall flash for this Grandma!

I've bookmarked her site... it's amazing! I wish her well with her career, but I'm certain she's a popular artist!

I so wish I could draw... but I think I have an eye for other things. I've done three weddings, a ton of jewelry and beadwork as gifts, I work with polymer clay, floral arranging, topiary and wreaths, counted cross stitch and embroidery... I don't do it for money, but for family and friends and the sheer pleasure and satisfaction it brings. I also enjoy writing. I have so many ideas floating around in my head, I don't know where to begin or what to do first, half the time!

Al, that's a good one! I think I've heard it before, but it never fails to make me smile!

And, Rina, your daughter has inspired me to continue and finish some work I've been putting off... thank you! She's truly talented in a way I can so relate to!

Time to think about what's for dinner... since I'm the cook tonight. Hmmm... steamed vegetables and lean meat, I think. Have a lovely evening, everyone!

It seems everyone here holds their own form of talent... there's something about the love of flora and fauna...

    Bookmark   November 28, 2012 at 6:35PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo


Thank you for sharing - so there is still hope for me too???lol...My girls tease me about getting a tattoo (they both have some - Andies art, obviously?!)

Received from my friend:

Those who jump off a bridge in Paris are in Seine

A man's home is his castle, in a manor of speaking.

Dijon vu - The same mustard as before.

Shotgun wedding - A case of wife or death.

A man needs a mistress just to break the monogamy.

A hangover is the wrath of grapes.

Does the name Pavlov ring a bell?

Reading while sunbathing makes you well red.

When two egotists meet, it's an I for an I.

A bicycle can't stand on its own because it is two tired.

What's the definition of a will? (It's a dead give-away.)

Time flies like an arrow. Fruit flies like a banana.

In democracy your vote counts. In feudalism your count votes.

A chicken crossing the road is poultry in motion .

If you don't pay your exorcist, you get repossessed.

With her marriage, she got a new name and a dress.

The man who fell into an upholstery machine is fully recovered.

You feel stuck with your debt if you can't budge it.

Local Area Network in Australia - the LAN down under.

Every calendar's days are numbered.

A lot of money is tainted - Taint yours and taint mine.

A boiled egg in the morning is hard to beat.

He had a photographic memory that was never developed.

A midget fortune-teller who escapes from prison is a small medium at large.

Once you've seen one shopping center, you've seen a mall.

Bakers trade bread recipes on a knead-to-know basis.

Santa's helpers are subordinate clauses.

Acupuncture is a jab well done.

    Bookmark   November 28, 2012 at 8:49PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

LOL! The art of a good pun!

I would say you're never too old to obtain skin art... except, the older we get the thinner our skin seems to become... and it's the areas with more fat under the skin that hurt the least. I won't lie and say it doesn't hurt... a few of mine were very painful. But, as they say... no pain, no gain! Everyone has a different threshold for pain, too... what hurts me may not even bother someone else in the slightest. I'm a huge baby when it comes to pain.

To me, it was totally worth it! I love every piece I have! I'd love to get more, and someday I most likely will, budget willing... a pox on the stigma that still surrounds skin art! I'm what one might call a nonconformist, a liberal, and I love the uniqueness of self expression! I say, if it makes you happy, go for it!

Have a wonderful day, everyone!

    Bookmark   November 29, 2012 at 12:59PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
tapla (mid-MI z5b-6a)

This has been around, but it showed up in my mail today:

These are from a book called Disorder in the American Courts, and are things people actually said in court, word for word, taken down and now published by court reporters that had the torment of staying calm while these exchanges were actually taking place.

ATTORNEY: What was the first thing your husband said to you that morning?
WITNESS: He said , 'Where am I, Cathy?'
ATTORNEY: And why did that upset you?
WITNESS: My name is Susan!

ATTORNEY: What gear were you in at the moment of the impact?
WITNESS: Gucci sweats and Reeboks.

ATTORNEY: Are you sexually active?
WITNESS: No, I just lie there.

ATTORNEY: This myasthenia gravis, does it affect your memory at all?
ATTORNEY: And in what ways does it affect your memory?
WITNESS: I forget..
ATTORNEY: You forget? Can you give us an example of something you forgot?

ATTORNEY: Do you know if your daughter has ever been involved in voodoo?
WITNESS: We both do.
WITNESS: We do..
WITNESS: Yes , voodoo.

ATTORNEY: Now doctor , isn't it true that when a person dies in his sleep , he doesn't know about it until the next morning?
WITNESS: Did you actually pass the bar exam?

ATTORNEY: The youngest son , the 20-year-old , how old is he?
WITNESS: He's 20 , much like your IQ.

ATTORNEY: Were you present when your picture was taken?
WITNESS: Are you $hitting me?

ATTORNEY: So the date of conception (of the baby) was August 8th?
ATTORNEY: And what were you doing at that time?
WITNESS: Getting l--d

ATTORNEY: She had three children , right?
ATTORNEY: How many were boys?
ATTORNEY: Were there any girls?
WITNESS: Your Honor, I think I need a different attorney. Can I get a new attorney?

ATTORNEY: How was your first marriage terminated?
WITNESS: By death..
ATTORNEY: And by whose death was it terminated?
WITNESS: Take a guess.

ATTORNEY: Can you describe the individual?
WITNESS: He was about medium height and had a beard
ATTORNEY: Was this a male or a female?
WITNESS: Unless the Circus was in town I'm going with male.

ATTORNEY: Is your appearance here this morning pursuant to a deposition notice which I sent to your attorney?
WITNESS: No, this is how I dress when I go to work.

ATTORNEY: Doctor , how many of your autopsies have you performed on dead people?
WITNESS: All of them.. The live ones put up too much of a fight.

ATTORNEY: ALL your responses MUST be oral , OK? What school did you go to?
WITNESS: Oral...

ATTORNEY: Do you recall the time that you examined the body?
WITNESS: The autopsy started around 8:30 PM
ATTORNEY: And Mr. Denton was dead at the time?
WITNESS: If not , he was by the time I finished.

ATTORNEY: Are you qualified to give a urine sample?
WITNESS: Are you qualified to ask that question?

And last:

ATTORNEY: Doctor, before you performed the autopsy, did you check for a pulse?
ATTORNEY: Did you check for blood pressure?
ATTORNEY: Did you check for breathing?
ATTORNEY: So, then it is possible that the patient was alive when you began the autopsy?
ATTORNEY: How can you be so sure, Doctor?
WITNESS: Because his brain was sitting on my desk in a jar.
ATTORNEY: I see, but could the patient have still been alive, nevertheless?
WITNESS: Yes, it is possible that he could have been alive and practicing law.color>


    Bookmark   November 29, 2012 at 2:02PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
Loveplants2 8b Virginia Beach, Virginia

My, Oh, MY!!!

I can't stop laughing... Way to funny!!

Thanks for the laughter this aftermoon!!

Makes one wonder about people...


    Bookmark   November 29, 2012 at 4:08PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Al, I was laughing so hard I couldn't read some of those aloud to my husband, who wanted to know why I was laughing so hard!

The scary part is... those are, or were, actually practicing lawyers...

    Bookmark   November 29, 2012 at 6:54PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Why men die before women...

    Bookmark   November 30, 2012 at 8:34AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Yikes! That puts a whole new perspective on it!

And I always thought it was because it gave them a running start! LOL!

    Bookmark   November 30, 2012 at 11:11AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Plant rant:
According to labeled instructions and some cultivator guides I read the following.

Water well when dry, or allow to dry then water well.

Making me think:
Not sure where someone would get water from when the well is dry if the well is where water comes from.

Rina: The art work is neat and was a lot of fun to see adding a touch of human character to animals does add to the imagination . The listed puns where a blast of chuckling when read out loud.

Al: Funny and true. Thanks for reminding me why I dont want to be a lawyer. Although sometimes I would still like to be the responder.

    Bookmark   November 30, 2012 at 12:57PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Why men die before women #2...

    Bookmark   November 30, 2012 at 3:14PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
jojosplants(9/ Tucson, Az.)

I got lucky getting this picture. :-)
The flower is on our Rainbow Hedgehog cactus.

    Bookmark   November 30, 2012 at 6:46PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
tapla (mid-MI z5b-6a)

Fart in church .....

An elderly couple, Tom and Ellen, were recently attending church services at The Villages.

About halfway through the service, Ellen took a pen and paper out of her purse, and wrote a note and handed it to Tom .

The note said:" I just let out a silent fart, what do you think I should do?"

Tom scribbled back, " Put a new battery in your hearing aid."


    Bookmark   November 30, 2012 at 9:43PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

LOL, Al! You do keep me laughing!

What a catch, JoJo! Lovely flower, and great little pollinator!

Rina, good one! Makes ya wonder whatever happened to common sense!

Ok... true story... happened to my husband after a long and drawn out, and really unnecessary, court battle over garbage someone dumped on property we own that's over 300 miles away. Ever since my husband won a case against the county on a non-existent law on how many dogs a person could own in town many decades ago, the county has not liked him... and thought they finally had him hung on this garbage dumping thing. Anyway, to make a long story short, the judge finally got tired of the wasted time and court resources for nothing, threw the case out... and my husband had the pleasure of telling the district attorney, a female, that if she truly wanted to appear professional, she should remove the the giant green snot hanging from her left nostril... and walked out of the courtroom. It was a most triumphant moment for us, and very embarrassing for the witch of a lawyer who chased us for three years over some trash someone else had deposited on our land, zoned agriculture, anyway!

There is sometimes justice... you just have to wait for it!

    Bookmark   December 1, 2012 at 6:52AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
jojosplants(9/ Tucson, Az.)

Hi Everyone!
I have had so many laughs over the recent posts! And like Jodi, have spit my coffee!! ROFL!! You'd think by now we'd know not to drink it while reading threads like this! LOL!
The lawyer ones were too much! And kinda scary! LOL!

Jodi, I could just see Larry putting her in her place! Gosh, how satisfying that must have been!

Josh! Good to see you! Been busy! Hope the kids are treating you well! Mine is slacking off big time this year!! I wish I had you here as his teacher! I know he'd do so much better! Too many just don't care anymore. :-( I've turned him over to my brother. lol.. If he can't straighten my son out and get him better motivated in school no one can.
The peppers look great! Love the color of the yellow/orange one! Can't hear what you may be saying though, puter doesn't play sound. lol..
Hope you have plenty of naked ladies soon! keep us posted!

I've enjoyed all the art you have shared!
and the pics of why women out live men! LOL! Oh my!! I"m afraid of heights, and just looking at them made me woozy!

I too have several tatoo's , all of which are special and have a little story. One is my brothers art work! He drew it and the tatoo artist traced it. 2 seahorses on my calf. also have dolphins on the ankle, a orchid on my middle finger and an angel on my arm with 2 of my 3 nieces names. Need to add the 3rd. ;-)

Mike, Al, Mrlike2u.. Hope your all well!!

Jodi~ Thanks. :-)
That little bee looks like he is smiling to me. lol..
That plant bloomed 7 at once this summer!! Oh she was beautiful! I'll post a link. It was amazing!

Back later! Still have tons of photos to share, just a matter of finding them. :-)


Here is a link that might be useful: 7 Beautiful blooms

    Bookmark   December 1, 2012 at 7:34PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
jojosplants(9/ Tucson, Az.)

Horned Toad..
I love finding these every summer. I always make them welcome in my yard. This is a very young one, about 1/3 the size they can reach.

    Bookmark   December 1, 2012 at 8:21PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
jojosplants(9/ Tucson, Az.)

Here you go Mike..
My Praying Mantis you asked for. :-) I hope mom, and everyone here enjoys it and the others I post.


    Bookmark   December 1, 2012 at 8:28PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
jojosplants(9/ Tucson, Az.)

This one took awhile! lol.. Thank goodness for digital cameras and being able to take 100 pics to get one you like. lol.

I know you have this plant, it's posted up thread, I lost my label. What is it? lol..

It's such a neat plant with the soft velvety flowers. Was wondering if it could be used for bonsai? Any thoughts guys.? :-)


    Bookmark   December 1, 2012 at 9:34PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Great photos, JoJo! Love the cacti blooms... and the hummingbird!

Are you talking about Russian Sage? Perovskia, if I'm not mistaken, though don't quote me on the spelling.

I actually have a patch of two different sages, a shorter one in blue and the Russian kind, growing together... with some average, and rather invasive, Hyssop that pops up in the same area. It's a gravelly southern exposure along the driveway, next to a garage. The mantises seem to enjoy it there.

With Spirea at one end, Viburnum on the other, the Sages, Hyssop, two types of Rudbeckia, Oriental Poppies, Platycodon, red Monarda, a Yucca, a Peony, bright red Daylilies, and a Hot Cocoa rose up against the garage wall on a wrought iron trellis, it's a colorful area almost all growing season, with lots of cover for the mantises. It must sound like a hodge-podge, but it looks nice as it evolves through the seasons. The ground is so tough to work that I'm just thrilled anything survives there!

I suppose almost any plant could be trained as bonsai, or close to it... Al has some amazing pictures of that Snapdragon, as example...

JoJo, with all the bad luck and issues we've lived through, getting not only the last word, but embarrassing the heck out of that district attorney was so satisfying... karma created the perfect opportunity, and the old man took it! It was great! She totally deserved being embarrassed, after chasing us for 3 years over some trash that we had nothing to do with. What a ridiculous waste of government resources! Not to mention making us travel almost 4 hours each way, for each court date, over a period of 3 years... like we can afford that! And in the end, the judge finally said it sounded more like a personal vendetta, and threw it out anyway. Great systems we have, eh? And we wonder why everyone complains about waste... it's a wasteful system.

So, anyway... a bit of insomnia keeps me up again... one more cup of coffee and I'm gonna try for a nap. Have a good day, everyone!

    Bookmark   December 2, 2012 at 5:45AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
greenman28 NorCal 7b/8a

Hey, guys and gals!

Thanks for the laughs, they were quite hearty ;-)

Rina, your daughter's artwork is very nice...clean and professional.

JoJo, the students are treating me well, for sure.
I bet the yellow peppers were the Yellow Bhut Jolokia (Ghost Peppers) that I grew this year....
very very hot, though not as hot as the Red Bhut Jolokia. Great flavor, berry-like aftertaste.

Well, three storms systems passed over us, dumping nearly 8 inches of rain in total.
In the back yard, the creek is rushing. I made two videos for anyone interested....
the first video has some awful wind noise, but the second video has just rain pattering:
Creek video 1 -
Creek full with storm waters part 1

Creek video 2 -
Creek full of storm water part 2

Just the other day, before the rain, the backyard was looking like this:

    Bookmark   December 2, 2012 at 3:16PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Wow, Josh... that's some rainfall and wash through! Our creek bed has been nearly dry all year, but has begun to run at a more normal capacity now that summer is over and we've gotten some rain. It's a fairly large, deep creek normally, supporting a plethora of wildlife including large turtles, lots of fish, beaver... and the slough gets a lot of large bird action and a cacophony of frogs in summer!

I do love how you've got the bamboo surrounded with rock... nice! There are Osage Oranges growing all over the place here... scrub trees. The wood is so dense that farmers once used it as fence post material, and many are still solid... even though the barbed wire is long gone or well rusted.

We've had unusually mild weather for December. Yesterday, the husband was working on a Jeep in the driveway wearing a short sleeved t-shirt. As a kid, I remember snow by this time of year.

While there's some frost damage to the more tender plants, most are still growing... I'm in a quandary as to putting things away for the season as is normal. We go from cold with heavy frosts to almost summer like weather. It isn't normal...

    Bookmark   December 3, 2012 at 7:26AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
greenman28 NorCal 7b/8a

Good morning, Jodi!
It has been very mild here, as well...I was in shorts and sandals while taking those videos ;-)
This little seasonal creek connects rural ponds and streams to the central Lake in this community,
and occasionally has fish - blue gill, catfish - small turtles, and ordinary ducks. Lots of frogs, too.

The bamboo is a work in progress, and I always have my eye open for good rocks to use - I know how you love
rocks in the yardscape, as well. I can't wait to see how much growth I get out of the 'Boo next season.

I did a run of Osage seeds this year, and now I have five pots of seedlings to be separated and potted,
in addition to my two other well-established container trees. One of the trees is being grown for a
walking-stick. I've been fascinated with Osage ever since I learned they could be grown so thick that even
hogs can't get through.

The weather is quite normal for us this time of year. We always have a few hard frosts (30F) in November,
and toward the end of December we drop even colder. I actually assembled my cold-frame a month early....
but mostly to limp my hot peppers to the bitter end.


    Bookmark   December 3, 2012 at 10:43AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I DO love a good rock, or even old bricks and interesting logs as border materials, Josh! I predict you'll need more rocks as bamboo is known to be quite invasive in growing runners... as far as I've heard. I think there's only one kind that can survive this far north, and we don't have any.

Today, I turned off the kennel furnace, undid the air flow area that I close for winter, and am running the big fan! That's how warm it is today, December 3rd! In fact, I just finished rolling up the last run of soaker hose, and I'm sweating! I was wearing a light jacket!

What I'm afraid will happen is, everything will push out new buds... and it's happening right now... and they'll all be killed by a sudden cold snap that extends through winter. It happened two years ago, and I lost two Lilacs. The old fashioned kind recovered, though.

Speaking of seeds, I just collected some from the yellow and white Siberian Iris to see if I can get some to grow. I might have to refrigerate them for a few weeks first... I have to read up on it.

You wouldn't believe all the Osage Orange trees around here... they leave those green "road apples", as we call them, all over the place! It's said that you can keep a couple in your basement or attic to ward off spiders. I don't know if that's true, but I do know there are uses for the ugly things! They do look funny splattered all over the roads in fall!

Well... back to the salt mines! Have a lovely day, everyone!

    Bookmark   December 3, 2012 at 1:20PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Jodi, Laura, mrLike, JoJo, Josh - Thank you all for nice coments on my daughter's paintings.

Josh, pretty good rainfall...I read recently how to plant Osage orange to grow living fence/windbreak. Interesting idea - just to have enough property to use it!

I dare one more...why men die before women:

    Bookmark   December 3, 2012 at 8:52PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

LOL, Rina! Well, they do say us girls mature faster than boys... perhaps there should be more to that saying!

    Bookmark   December 4, 2012 at 12:00PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Ohhhhhhhh BOY! I have so much catching up to do!

I hope all my dear friends are ok! Look at the videos and pictures here. Ok, even though I have been under the weather, there is no excuse to be away from you all this long! Sorry guys:-(

I DID notice the Mantis Jojo and thank you so much for that! Oh, I wish I could even find just one in my yard! I think I am going to buy a sac next spring!

Jodik, you know ho I feel about the Mantis! I had to take a second look. Lovely!

Rina...Amazing work I must say. WOW. It is so unique for sure. What a talent!
You have been such a joy to be around and thank you for being a central part of these forums too.

Josh, ok, I am off to see the videos and e-mail you back too! Oh, I can't wait to see:-) What a pretty picture pal!

Nite everyone.

    Bookmark   December 4, 2012 at 7:59PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Josh!!!! Holy mackerel! Insane!

Talk about a whole lot of water. I just knew you were getting punched with rain. It always gets warm here on the East coast while you get pummeled! Not that I wish this upon you for the entire winter..;-)

How in the world did you link Youtube here? Nice


    Bookmark   December 4, 2012 at 8:06PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
greenman28 NorCal 7b/8a

Howdy, Mike! Glad to see you here!
I hope that spell of warm weather gets you out from under the weather for a while at least! ;-)
We took a pounding alright, and it's raining again right now (Tuesday night, 8:33ish).

Jodi, I bet the Osage flourishes out there! They're something of a novelty here, and they catch
the eye when you see them...especially when loaded with those apples. What a mess, indeed!

Jodi and JoJo, I thought this next update might interest you...
Two of the three Naked Lady lily seeds that I harvested (and immediately planted) have sprouted!
I used a coarse mix of Scoria (lava rock), Perlite, and Fir bark, along with some Quartzite grit.
The ingredients were recycled from odds and ends of other mixes, but I think I struck close enough
to call it gritty :-)

I know it'll take quite a while before these bloom, but I figure the world can always use a few more
Naked Ladies. They're my favorites, for their beauty and their subtle, delicious scent.

Good night everyone!

    Bookmark   December 4, 2012 at 11:33PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Mike, I sure hope you feel better... boy, do I know what that's like... that's practically my whole life!

Josh, it's about 3 years, give or take, from seed to bloom for a Hippeastrum, so I'm thinking close to the same for most amaryllids. That's with optimum care.

During the first year, be sure to maintain moisture... after that, I believe they'll need or want a rest period at some point during the year. That's been my experience, anyway. They're fun to watch grow, forming tiny bulblets fairly soon!

    Bookmark   December 5, 2012 at 9:27AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
greenman28 NorCal 7b/8a

Good morning, Jodi!

Yes, I plan on getting these a headstart this Winter, and then releasing them to the yard
next year so they can go through their "dry" period. I'm really just happy that they actually


    Bookmark   December 5, 2012 at 11:22AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Mike: For you tube I think you would need a google email account to set up and log into a YOU TUBE account. After logging into you tube VIA goggle account follow the menus with recorded videos for uploading vids almost the same as you would upload pics to a photo bucket account.

To post the video you would then need to use HTML code
Link text .

In between the first " and second " replace the letters url with the link to a video you want to share on GW ro an email you would see this part of line as follows remember no spaces are used

Where it reads >Link text you remove the words LINK TEXT and replace them with video 1 as Josh did to read >video 1 and now the entire line would read to your eyes
Video 1 .

For one video I think GW allows us to copy the you tube link to the bottom where it says Optional Link URL and fill in the name of the link box.

Rina: Very funny indeed not to make excuses but when I see the first two pics I can understand that the men where left to there own devices.
Then a curve is seen at pic three, working men this time also have a supervisor. Whats even more odd about the third one is there's a big sized for the fridge only elevator on the other side of the building.

My reason why men die before women: Work smarter not harder. Thanks to you I always suspected that women where the smarter of our species and now there is picture proof.

Josh: That's a lot of water there it's always good to live on the top sides of hills. A nice start for your seedlings but because it's you I'll side wager Jodi for two years for your young shoots to flower

Jodi: I'm not sure what the wager should be but nice to see you offering help on the other bulb thread. I know a nice costume mix makes for nice plants with out reminders of how they work for the more experienced is usually understood but is often overlooked by some.

This post was edited by mrlike2u on Wed, Dec 5, 12 at 12:29

    Bookmark   December 5, 2012 at 12:02PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Well now, Mrlike2u... I never bet unless it's a sure thing... and there are very few sure things in this life!

With Josh's experience and knowledge, though, I'd guess you're probably right. As I said, my experience is mainly in dealing with Hippeastrums, most of them hybrids, so that's what I have to gauge my guess by. Growing them out in the garden with Mother Nature's help will be a definite boost... that's for sure!

I try to direct new growers to Al's first article, which gives a great overview, recipes, concepts, tips, etc... and then explain that we each have our own unique environments to deal with, so that has to be accounted for, as well.

As example, I grow in what is, essentially, an indoor desert... so I have to adjust my medium mixes and care to my own conditions. Certain plants won't grow for me, and I have to either accept that, or try to adjust the environment. Since an income is a little more important than plants, I have to allow the dry conditions for my husband's electronics and computer equipment. In short, it's a nightmare for an indoor grower, and I can't wait for the day when we finally move back north, and I have a different environment to play around with! Hopefully, that is!

    Bookmark   December 5, 2012 at 3:16PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
tapla (mid-MI z5b-6a)

Just wanted to say hey & let you all know I'm enjoying the chatter! ;-)

This one's been around awhile, but might be worth a grin:

A young man named John received a parrot as a gift.

The parrot had a bad attitude and an even worse vocabulary. Every word out of the bird's mouth was rude, obnoxious and laced with profanity.

John tried and tried to change the bird's attitude by consistently saying only polite words, playing soft music and anything else he could think of to 'clean up' the bird's vocabulary.

Finally, John was fed up and he yelled at the parrot. The parrot yelled back. John shook the parrot and the parrot got angrier and even ruder.

John, in desperation, threw up his hand, grabbed the bird and put him in the freezer. For a few minutes the parrot squawked and kicked and screamed. Then suddenly there was total quiet. Not a peep was heard for over a minute.

Fearing that he'd hurt the parrot, John quickly opened the door to the freezer. The parrot calmly stepped out onto John's outstretched arms and said "I believe I may have offended you with my rude language and actions. I'm sincerely remorseful for my inappropriate transgressions and I fully intend to do everything I can to correct my rude and unforgivable behavior."

John was stunned at the change in the bird's attitude. As he was about to ask the parrot what had made such a dramatic change in his behavior, the bird spoke-up, very softly, "May I ask what the turkey did?"


    Bookmark   December 5, 2012 at 3:17PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo


Thank you for nice comments...Hope you are feeling much better.
I am really inspired by your amazing plants - taking notes, planning on a similar 'cool room' - have to get some citrus plants first thou!


Some photos could be staged, who knows; but I have seen - and done - some ridiculous things too!
(Promise no more cheep shots at men?!)

Another amazing photo (received from friend):

    Bookmark   December 6, 2012 at 8:40AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Cute, Al!

In another life, I had birds... an African Grey that talked, a Peachfaced Lovebird that talked a little, and a Cockatiel that talked, as well. They could get so noisy that they had their own room, so I could close the door! And the larger parrots can learn anything repeated enough times, profanity and annoying noises included!

The funny thing is, as much as they all babbled and talked away, with a rather large combined vocabulary, when you WANTED them to perform, they were quiet as church mice, feigning complete ignorance, looking at me as though I were nuts! And visitors would say, "Ya, sure they talk..."

Sadly, I had to sell them all as my life changed and work took me away for long periods. It wasn't fair to them. They were sold as a family, to a woman who adored birds, and had a houseful... that made me feel a little better about it.

Nice photo, Rina. I've never been able to capture lightning, but I'm more the point and shoot type of person!

Here's a recent photo of Charlie and friends... Charlie was born a little early in the season, and we saved him with a blow dryer and a few weeks in a heated kennel. He's the brown goat to the right, I believe.

Here's a view out my window... horses and goats in various pastures...

Red Cascade roses STILL blooming!

Horses out in pasture, from a different angle.

My day begins... Rosie wants her breakfast! Have a good one, everybody!

    Bookmark   December 6, 2012 at 9:45AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo


Great views you have there. Looks still so green, and the blooming roses - don't they know winter is around the corner?
How many horses do you have? easy( = positive thinking...) is it to keep them? I only vaguely remember my grandma's animals - lots of sheep (at one time my grandparents had 600; they made best cheese ever), horses, cows, pigs, rabbits and goats. Goats were funny little rascals.
And chickens, geese, duck, turkeys - seems to be so long ago.


    Bookmark   December 6, 2012 at 4:24PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Rina..Aw, thanks so much. Getting better.:-)
I can only hope many are encouraged to grow plants and be in love with them as I am....It is possible to bring the Caribbean home even if old man winter can't stand it! Lovely picture by the way. I am a lightning fanatic.
My best friend and I chase storm all summer long and take photography!

Jodik! Wow, even Charlie gets a better view than I do! He is so lucky to be living with you and his surroundings! I wish.
Love the pictures and wish I could be there for a few days!
Right, when will those roses go to rest? Wow!

Al, that's a good Very funny!

He Wes, great to see you. Thanks a bunch for the help and good to see you:-0)

Josh, have you had to use a Canoe these days to get about your yard? What rains you had buddy!
Congrats on your seedlings! Nice:-)
Hey, are you getting any new sheaths yet on your special Cattleya names after you? I would love to see the new blooms!

Josh, is that BLACK bamboo something that would grow in my zone? I LOVE it! You know how I feel about gothic looking plants!

Have a great night all. It' past my bed time:-)


    Bookmark   December 6, 2012 at 9:26PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Hey, everyone!

Rina, they're not my horses or goats... I just help a little. I know next to nothing about them, except that horses are money pits... and goats, not so difficult to care for, but still... you need space, housing, a market for the meat, money for feed over winter, vet care, etc...

I'm a dog person, and that's where the bulk of my knowledge is. When I was younger, I lived on a dairy farm for several years, so I know a bit about that... I've done a lot in my life, so I know a little about a lot. But dogs are what I've spent the majority of my life working with, so that's what I know best.

Yes, it's a lovely view. I just wish it didn't get so cold or snow here. I despise winter! The older I get, the more I hate the cold!

That Red Cascade is mostly growing through the fence toward the east, and the area is rather protected, so it's always the last one to stop blooming.

Have a great day, everyone!

    Bookmark   December 7, 2012 at 10:39AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Hello happy holydays : ) to all here , hope u doing good : ), well a friend of mines here in PR saw me so interested in plumerias , she told me she was gonna see if she had any around she could give and when she told me that i said : D great , but she told me that those plants had always a non aceptable and ugly looking worm that was so yucky that not even the birds wanted to eat them : ( , so i was wondering do you also have these disgusting worms in your plumerias ? is this true ? or could it be that those worms arrive when the plumerias are planted in soil pots or ground soil ? or do you have them in 5-1-1 mix or gritty mix ? or is there any way or tips or tricks to avoid those worm ? i was thinking in making maybe a " electric fence " jejeje on the pot or the sourruinding the plant so keep those worms off away , so would like your opinion or data about this : )

    Bookmark   December 8, 2012 at 10:22AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

My suggestion would be to apply a granular systemic to the soil, but I've learned that in my northern area, the tougher issues require chemical go-to's at times. Some people prefer more organic methods... and I use those in my gardens whenever possible. But when it comes to container growing, I'm an inorganic kind of grower.

    Bookmark   December 8, 2012 at 11:10AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

jodik , what is that granular systemic ?

    Bookmark   December 8, 2012 at 11:49AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
greenman28 NorCal 7b/8a

Good morning, friends! Happy holidays, indeed!

Well, the sun is shining for the second day in a row, and I daresay the storms have let up for a bit.
I look forward to fertilizing all my peppers in the cold-frame, as well as all of my Citrus plants!

No more canoe travel, Wes, Mike, and JoJo, haha ;)
The streets and gutters are still thick with fallen leaves and slick mats of pine-needle mash.

Jodi, great shots of the pastures and those fun little goats. I wish I could have goats where I am.
Very impressive that you still have a rose in bloom, too. I chopped my rose back last month. Only down
the hill are there still rose gardens in bloom.

Mike, sorry buddy, but Black Bamboo isn't hardy in your area. Zone 7 is a safe limit. Beyond that,
I think you'd never get the culms to survive the Winter and, thus, you'd never get the culms to turn black.


    Bookmark   December 8, 2012 at 12:43PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
tapla (mid-MI z5b-6a)

If anyone wants a great recipe for Chocolate Mousse:

As you can see, it's low cal. ;-) Better lock the fridge, though.


Here is a link that might be useful: Recipe here

    Bookmark   December 8, 2012 at 3:06PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

The systemic is from Bayer, and I believe it's called "Rose and Flower Care". It's in a blue container in most US garden centers or sections of stores.

I sprinkle a little on top of the medium in each pot... or on the ground around the root zone of a garden plant... and it feeds and protects for several months, depending on rainfall or watering habits. I've had great success with it. It's kept a few of my more tender roses from losing tips and early spring buds to aphids, and I believe it helps protect my potted plants from unwanted insect damage. It sure seems to!

The only problem with goats, Josh, is that the little buggers absolutely love to eat roses and other perennials! I'm doing more fencing come spring, as I've chased the smaller goats out of the rose gardens several times this season, already... and they're really trying my patience!

Mike, I believe if you Google "hardy Bamboo for northern zones" or key words to that effect, you may find that there are one or two varieties that can survive our winters. I can't remember what the variety names are, but I think there's at least one, possibly two types that will make it if planted in a more protected area. I don't have any here... yet!

Off to watch the UFC Pre-lims on FX tv... Diaz vs. Hendersen tonight, ya'll!

Oh... and thanks, Al... I'll scope it out... I love chocolate!

    Bookmark   December 8, 2012 at 5:06PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
tapla (mid-MI z5b-6a)

Just finished watching the prelims (recorded) gonna watch the main attractions now. Go Nate! I'm afraid he has an uphill battle ahead of him, but I'll still cheer for him.


    Bookmark   December 8, 2012 at 9:41PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
jojosplants(9/ Tucson, Az.)

2 minutes after reading your post Al about the fight, I hear one on tv..and hear the name Nathan. LOL! Hubby just put it on! (eyes rolling) lol.

I cut my thumb really bad today and would love to go crochet and unwind, but not gonna happen tonight.

Hunt and peck to type too! lol..

Josh! So glad rain has let up for you! Gosh, you got more rain in two days than we do in a year! lol..

Cool the naked lady's sprouted!!!! Thanks for remembering I love them! they will be dancing in your yard before you know it!

A huge hello to all! trouble typing , so gonna go for now!

Hope those of you that are fight fans are enjoying it! I'm not a fan and am gonna go hide with an ice pack for the finger! lol.


    Bookmark   December 8, 2012 at 10:10PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
jojosplants(9/ Tucson, Az.)

Hey! did you know one of these guys is from here !?!

I know... That would be like telling you Gritty mix is fast draining.. LOL!!

Yes, I actually watched a few minutes of it. lol. now back to the ice pack . ;-)


This post was edited by jojosplants on Sat, Dec 8, 12 at 22:39

    Bookmark   December 8, 2012 at 10:29PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I hope your thumb heals fast, JoJo. I know how that is.

I'm a little disappointed after the fights, but most of our picks won. BJ should go back to his own weight class, and I think Nate could have taken Ben if they'd had more time, but it is what it is, and Nick should be up for the next fight. Good scraps, though. A good card, all in all.

    Bookmark   December 9, 2012 at 8:47AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
Loveplants2 8b Virginia Beach, Virginia

Good Morning Everyone!!!

Al, Jojo, Jodi... I hope you all enjoyed those fights last night!! Sounds like fun!!


The issues with some Plumeria and the "worm" problem is usually found with the Long Horned Beelte Larvae. This can be a problem with some trees and mostly found in Hawaii.

You said that you were interested in Plumeria? This means you are just interested right? Then i wouldn't be to concerned about this problem unless your friend who is offering you a tree or cutting and she has a infestation. I would kindly decline her offer. :-)

Dr Richard Criley from the University of Hawaii has done alot of reasearch on this topic. If you have any questions, you could reasearch this or i can give you more information. I wouldn't let this stop you from becoming interested in these beautiful trees.

This would be like worrying about any pest or disease before you buy a tree.

The USDA does inspections for this problem when cutting or trees come from Hawaii ou anywhere out of the country into the Mainland.

Have fun and don't worry!!

Hope this helps!!

Take care,


    Bookmark   December 9, 2012 at 9:57AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
tapla (mid-MI z5b-6a)

I had to keep an eye on GS yesterday while mom & dad shopped, but Curt (oldest son) made sure they were back for the fights, then younger son showed up just about when we were going to start watching. I had started to record them earlier so I could cut through all the commercials & useless chatter, and would prolly have watched the fights today, if not for the kids. I thought it was a really good card, really entertaining. I hated to see Nate lose, but Henderson beat him soundly. I thought I set the DVR to record an extra half hour, but maybe I didn't, unless the fights ran way over (time) - I missed the last 22 seconds of the fight & didn't get to see the scores, but I can't imagine that Diaz won any of the 5 rounds. Henderson was just too much for him to handle - controlled the fight & kept Nate from implementing his fight.

Too bad McDonald is so humble & unassuming, eh? ;-) I figured he'd hand Penn his hat, but never thought it would be THAT one-sided. Pen will probably retire now, I'm guessing.


I remember reading a LOT about the Asian long-horned beetle when I was a younger feller. Here's some interesting background on it from Wiki, if you're interested:

"The ALB was believed to have arrived in New York City in the 1980s in wood packing material. According to Victor Mastro, the Director of Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service Laboratory on Cape Cod, Massachusetts, the center of the infection zone was a warehouse which imported plumbing supplies from China (Smith, 2003). The infestations in Hudson County, New Jersey and on Long Island are believed to have spread from the Brooklyn point of entry. The infestations in Chicago and central New Jersey are believed to have come from a separate point of entry.
The Greenpoint infestation was first reported by Ingram Carner of Greenpoint on a Saturday in August 1996 and identified by Cornell University entomologist Richard Hoebeke on August 19. The Amityville infestation was brought, inadvertently, from Brooklyn by the Mike Ryan Tree Services, a tree pruning company, which performs work for the NYNEX telephone company."

33* here with an inch of snow on the ground, the first real snow we've had, other than one snowfall of about 2" that melted before noon the next day. The birds are feasting at the feeders. I always enjoy the weekend days when it snows .....

Hava good Sunday!


    Bookmark   December 9, 2012 at 11:03AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
tapla (mid-MI z5b-6a)

Oh my!! Wow - I followed a YouTube link about an iPad salesman someone sent me, and after I finished watching a clever magician selling iPads, I saw a picture that for some reason caught my attention. I clicked on the link and ...... well, see what came up. Most of you have been moved by Susan Boyle's first performance on that Britt talent show, but this is that Susan Boyle thing all over again, except MUCH more moving, at least for me. I'm guessing this will move a high % of people to tears .... in a good way. Copy/paste the link to your browser:

So did you leak a few?


    Bookmark   December 9, 2012 at 12:05PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
tapla (mid-MI z5b-6a)

Sooo sorry. I wasn't playing a trick, I just I screwed up. I hope you liked the magician. ;-)

Try these links - copy/paste to browser:

Sorry ...


    Bookmark   December 9, 2012 at 12:25PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Al, I can't wait to go home and see that one! Thanks.

By the way, I was wondering where in the world did you get that 'plant', the very first one this thread? I know a dear friend of ours that was looking all over for one and could never find one.

33 degrees there!? Well I guess I am not going to complain since it has been in the 40's and 50's here. Tomorrow in the 60's, but, I must say, this lack of sunshine for days is getting to me.. I don't miss teh snow at all, even on teh

Hey Tecnico..Oh how I wish I could landscape my house in P.R right about now. I miss it there. I would have plumeria all over the place and use systemic as Jodik says.

Laura, I'll bet you are getting above average temps too right about now and a bit of humidity? It's been rather mild here. I wonder if all your fragrants are inside now? Hope you are well:-)

Josh, thank for the input! If there is any kind of plants out there with black on it, leaves or stems, I'll plant it. Right know I have black grass scattered about.
Great to see you made it safe and sound and not lost in some mudslide or something like that:-)

Jodik, I still think that those animals have it made living with you and with such a nice view! Lucky devils they

Jojo..Hello! I heard you had soem hard freezes there these days? please tell me that is not true. I shall have to cancel my nice warm vacation to there:-)

Well, I am off to work again, sitting here looking through huge windows at the grey sky. The sun is trying real hard to peek through though. Tomorrow I will be collecting all teh fresh rain water I can to last me through the winter in my barrels.
I also have to relate that my Mother sends her love to the gang. She hopes everyone is well. That is what we talked about this a.m. I took her to see the new James Bond movie yesterday..Not bad in Imax!


    Bookmark   December 9, 2012 at 1:06PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
greenman28 NorCal 7b/8a

Hey, guys and gals!

Third day of sun and 60F temps here. A chilly wind blows through, but the sun is nice!
Mike, like Jodi said, there are hardy bamboos for your area, but they aren't black I'm afraid.
I will keep an eye out for some "gothic" ;-) plants that you might like in your yard. I know you
have that awesome Elephant Ear by your pond.

I didn't catch the Fights, but they sound great! We aren't such big fans of the Diaz brothers
out here where folks have interacted with them on occasion. I'm glad Dan Henderson won.....
I've been a Henderson fan for a long time - that's one tough old dude!

No snow for us here yet!


    Bookmark   December 9, 2012 at 1:18PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
jojosplants(9/ Tucson, Az.)

Not me. No frost even! We've been in the high 70's in day and high 40's at night!

will be chilly the next few days, but then warm back up. No frost this season yet and not seeing any in the near future.

Who are you confusing me with? ;-)

Snow! Yuck!!! lol.. stay warm!

    Bookmark   December 9, 2012 at 1:19PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Sure Josh, just keep rubbing it in my face, and next will be Jojo telling me how nice and warm and SUNNY it

lol!!! before I even noticed Jojo here, I knew she would do that!!!hahahah

    Bookmark   December 9, 2012 at 3:05PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Ok, ok..Al....seriously, now that I have stopped laughing..

I need your expertise for a moment and if you don't know, then anyone familiar with what I am about to ask..Please...:-)

Al, please take a look at this thread that Laura started and look closely at her Oncidium Orchid, the very first picture..
See, the little freckled dots all over her leaves?
Mine when I first got them were perfectly green, and now after a year, they are all doing the very same thing.

Is this something to be concerned about or common for most orchids to get blemishes and brown spots like that?

I have physan 20 or similiar at the ready if this is some kind of fungus that happens with wet leaves in a very humid envirioment such as my greenhouse. I even have algea growing on the glass.

Your help is much appreciated!

Josh, now HOW DID YOU KNOW? lol..Yes very gothic, in fact, I have a few other black plants that everyone was very impressed with this summer. They are so different and draw so much color from the yard with other plants against them, let alone attention! Thanks pal.

Jojo..They might be talking about another state
I figured with the COLD jet stream dipping in the west these days, you would eventually get smacked in the face with my weather and a few snow flakes..I guess not


This post was edited by meyermike_1micha on Sun, Dec 9, 12 at 15:29

    Bookmark   December 9, 2012 at 3:15PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Al, atually, this might help> I am sure Laura won't mind me using her pic:-)
By the way, beautiful flowers Laura!:-) Still waiting for your call:-)

Al, notice the 'tiny' black spots on the leaves to the right and left? Mine had none of these when bought new last year.

    Bookmark   December 9, 2012 at 3:26PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo


Black mondo gras? I love it, have some too. Also black snakeroot, tulips, heuchera 'Obsidian', violas 'Black magic', Maidenhair fern - it's green but stems are black; and some edibles - basil 'Black Opal', radish 'Black Spanish' and tomatoe 'Black Cherry'. And 'Blackie' - sweet potatoe vine...
There is so many more (and so many I want!)...what else do you have 'in black?'


    Bookmark   December 9, 2012 at 4:32PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
tapla (mid-MI z5b-6a)

Mike - maybe Schizothyrium perexiguum or Schizothyrium pomi, also known as 'flyspeck'? ..... very common in Oncidiums.


    Bookmark   December 9, 2012 at 6:06PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
Loveplants2 8b Virginia Beach, Virginia

Hi MIke!!

I certainly don't mind you showing my "Sweet Baby" on this forum... To be perfectly honest, this Orchid was tucked behind some Plumeria all summer and i really didn't pay much attention to this one. Then when i brought it inside, it bloomed for me. LOL.. SO the leaves and the orchid is "as is" from bringing it inside. The fragrance of this orchid smells like "Chocolate" so i guess this is fitting for Al's recipe!!! ;-)

AL.. I think since i love Chocolate, this will have to be a new item for dessert for Christmas. Maybe, I should "test" the recipe first.. just in case!!!

OK.. so what should i spray on the leaves of this orchid?

The same recipe that i use on other plants? Neem Oil, Murphays Soap, Alcohol, Hotwater? WIll this take care of this problem? SHould i worry about it spreading to other plants? I do have it seperated from all of the others since it is in my livivng room to enjoy the blooms...

Conrado.. I forgot to memtion that i have never had any problems with any Larvae or any other Plumeria Stem Borer Insect. All of my friends that have Plumeria have never had any issues either. : )

Beautiful pics up thread.. Love the Lightning pic..

Stunning!!! Love to see lightning like that especially over the ocean...

AL.. I just watched the videos and i will say that i thought they were unbelievable.

Waterfalls here hearing such magical beauty from these two.

This is a great lesson to everyone to accept and treat each other with respect no matter if they shine on the inside or the outside.. Especially when they shine from deep within as these two beautiful teens do!!!


Take Care,


This post was edited by loveplants2 on Sun, Dec 9, 12 at 21:58

    Bookmark   December 9, 2012 at 9:55PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
jojosplants(9/ Tucson, Az.)

Hi All!
Jodi, doing a little better with the thumb,Thanks :-) but what a day! It's funny how much we don't realize how much we use something until we cant! Even a zipper was tough today, and dishes! OH MY! I have 2 deep cuts on each side of the middle knuckle, and knuckle hurts and can't bend. Long story.! LOL!!

Al~ I don't think Diaz won any of the rounds , but they were close. Just a few points short for each one.

Mike, looks like me and Josh typed at the same time. lol.. well.. you know I luv ya right, even when rubbing in how warm we are. ;-) well you are almost right, according to the weather , a cold front is on the way with possible hard freeze tues. Morning! Guess I need to round up plants tomorrow!

Hubby has an appointment with Chemo doc. tomorrow, plz keep us in your thoughts, and pray the treatments go easy! We find out tomorrow when they start. (will be soon)

spent today starting to do Christmas baking. Not fun with one thumb out of commission. lol. My son is taking a big interest in baking and is doing well! It's time he learned to cook! :-)

Al~ I will have to try that moose! What girl doesnt like chocolate? ;-)

I tried a recipe the other night called
Sweet potato pancakes, with a cream cheese/cinnamon topping, boy were they good!!!

Well... need to go for now.. talk to you all soon!


    Bookmark   December 9, 2012 at 11:28PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
Loveplants2 8b Virginia Beach, Virginia

Hi Jojo,

Sending prayers to you and hubby for successful and easy treatments...

Hope all goes well for you both!! :-)

Been through this and i know it is hard...

Sorry to hear about your fingers.. Ouch!!

Mike.. I hope you are feeling better too!

You had asked about the temps here at the beach.. Today we had temps reach 65* Tomorrow 74* Then the cold front will head on through. I was working the last couple of days in the northeast in that rain and cold nasty weather. It caused major delays and i was stranded in PHL last night due to the fog. These temps on the coast are perfect for these conditions and cause such havoc in the airline industry. Needless to say, i wasn't happy getting stranded there. LOL!!!

Our schedules seem to be opposite of each others, but i will get up with you!! ;-)

Speaking of baking.. i need to get my act together and start mine.. the time is slipping away and i need to get busy!!!

Merry Christmas!!!

Take care,


This post was edited by loveplants2 on Mon, Dec 10, 12 at 1:00

    Bookmark   December 9, 2012 at 11:47PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Well, Al... I think BJ, or any fighter, does a better job in his own weight class... and BJ took on a much larger guy, coming up in weight to fight. His opponent didn't have to gain or lose. Plus, he never seems to put his all into a camp. I just don't think his heart is in it any longer.

As for Nate... I think there are extenuating circumstances that one might not see, like Benson's unusually large legs, for example... Nate's just not that huge... and the fact that Nick hasn't held the belt yet. Nate is just the kind of brother that wouldn't feel right holding that belt first. Notice that at the end of the fight, even though Benson won rounds, Nate was still fresh and could have gone several more. There's more there than meets the eye, I think.

Same night, Pacquiao vs. Marquez... tough to choose which to watch, but we chose UFC. I see we chose well, and actually could have watched both, given the way scheduling worked out. Kind of a disappointing night, sports-wise... but, oh well... such is life. The under card was exciting with lots of good scraps, so we feel okay about it. There's always next time.

JoJo, I know how you feel... this weather we've been having has made every move a fight to get my chores done without taking all day! I so hate the cold! LOL! It's literally debilitating, to a certain extent. I already can't wait for spring to get here!

I'm thinking of you guys... as you go through treatments. I recall how hard it was on my Dad, and then my Mom... I hope everything works out well for your family, JoJo.

Nice orchid, Laura! Oncids don't seem to like my dry conditions, and I've been successful in the demise of two, so far. I've been researching types that can deal with what I have to offer. It's funny how we always want to grow things NOT from our own zones!

It's been cold and rainy here, but no snow yet, so I guess I can't complain too much.

Mike, I'd give almost anything to live in a warmer climate... especially one in which orchids grew wild, and a beach wasn't far away... with palm trees and sunshine! That's my dream... to eventually get a vacation from cold winter weather! LOL!

I hope everyone has a decent week... it's Monday again!

    Bookmark   December 10, 2012 at 7:38AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
greenman28 NorCal 7b/8a

Happy Monday from frosty northern California! :-)

Wow, I'm glad you guys didn't catch the error I made a few posts wasn't Dan Henderson....
it was Ben Henderson! I was talking to my brother yesterday, and he immediately corrected me ;-)
hehehe, what are little brothers for, right?

JoJo, I hope that injured paw heals up soon for you! How's your husband doing, by the way?

Jodi, it's not warm-warm here...but we do have a couple palms that survive, and we even have
some ground orchids that grow in the foothills where it is quite cold. Sunshine most months of
the year, too ;-)

Al, Jodi, Mike, Laura, Rina, Wes, Konrad....greetings to you, too!


    Bookmark   December 10, 2012 at 10:15AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
greenman28 NorCal 7b/8a

I believe it was you who asked for an Orchid update....yes, the buds are forming ;-)
Hopefully they'll open as beautifully as they did last year.

    Bookmark   December 10, 2012 at 1:52PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

"...what are little brothers for, right?"

Those are exactly my thoughts on the Diaz fight, Josh... and when you take what are his normal punch stats, normal submissions, etc. into account... I'd have to say that Nate proved he could go all 5 rounds without getting caught, without boxing to his true ability, and could catch Benson any time he wanted... something is up. Add that to the relative silence of his corner, the interviews given post fight... and the whole thing reads like a promo for other team members. He didn't take the belt... on purpose. Gilbert is next in line for a title shot, and is negotiating with UFC.

How the heck do you keep those orchids looking so fresh and healthy?

    Bookmark   December 10, 2012 at 3:03PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo


I was wondering the same thing Jodik! How does Josh do it?!

Just goes to show you that Josh can do anything with Orchids, AND SO CAN YOU Jodik! Even in a dry home:-)
Yahoo, you can do it!


    Bookmark   December 10, 2012 at 4:26PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
greenman28 NorCal 7b/8a

Good evening!

Mike and Jodi, thanks for the kind words ;-)
A coarse bark mix, lots of water, fertilizer, and a sunny window-sill...that's really all I do.
Mike was a bit worried about the surface roots, so I went ahead and watered for him, hahaha ;-)

Before and after, roots:


    Bookmark   December 10, 2012 at 11:01PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Men vs women

Men are just happier people.
What do you expect -
Your last name stays put. The garage is all yours. Wedding plans take care of themselves. Chocolate is just another snack. You can be President. You can never be pregnant. You can wear a white T-shirt to a water park. You can wear NO shirt to a water park. Car mechanics tell you the truth. The world is your urinal. You never have to drive to another gas station restroom because this one is just too icky. You don't have to stop and think of which way to turn a nut on a bolt. Same work, more pay. Wrinkles add character. Wedding dress $3,500. Tux rental $75. People never stare at your chest when you're talking to them. New shoes don't cut, blister, or mangle your feet. One mood all the time. Phone conversations are over in 30 seconds flat. You know stuff about tanks.
A five-day vacation requires only one suitcase. You can open all your own jars. You get extra credit for the slightest act of thoughtfulness. If someone forgets to invite you, he or she can still be your friend. Your underwear is $6.95 for a three-pack. Three pairs of shoes are more than enough. You almost never have strap problems in public. You are unable to see wrinkles in your clothes. Everything on your face stays its original colour. The same hairstyle lasts for years, maybe decades. You only have to shave your face and neck. You can play with toys all your life.
One wallet and one pair of shoes -- one colour for all seasons. You can wear shorts no matter how your legs look. You can 'do' your nails with a pocket knife. You have freedom of choice concerning growing a mustache. You can do Christmas shopping for 25 relatives on December 24 in 25 minutes.
No wonder men are happier.

� If Sheila, Candy and Sarah go out for lunch, they will call each other Sheila, Candy and Sarah.
� If Mike, Dave and John go out, they will affectionately refer to each other as Fat Boy, Bubba and Wildman.

� When the bill arrives, Mike, Dave and John will each throw in $20, even though it's only for $32.50. None of them will have anything smaller and none will actually admit they want change back.
� When the girls get their bill, outcome the pocket calculators.

� A man will pay $2 for a $1 item he needs.
� A woman will pay $1 for a $2 item that she doesn't need but it's on sale.

� A man has six items in his bathroom: toothbrush and toothpaste, shaving cream, razor, a bar of soap, and a towel.
� The average number of items in the typical woman's bathroom is 337. A man would not be able to identify more than 20 of these items.

� A woman has the last word in any argument.
� Anything a man says after that is the beginning of a new argument.

� A woman worries about the future until she gets a husband.
� A man never worries about the future until he gets a wife.

� A woman marries a man expecting he will change, but he doesn't.
� A man marries a woman expecting that she won't change, but she does.

� A woman will dress up to go shopping, water the plants, empty the trash, answer the phone, read a book, and get the mail.
� A man will dress up for weddings and funerals.

� Men wake up as good-looking as they went to bed.
� Women somehow deteriorate during the night.

� A woman knows all about her children. She knows about dentist appointments and romances, best friends, favourite foods, secret fears and hopes and dreams.
� A man is vaguely aware of some short people living in the house.

A married man should forget his mistakes. There's no use in two people remembering the same thing!

    Bookmark   December 11, 2012 at 8:22AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

LOL, Rina!

Josh, I'm a little worried because it looks to me like the bark is beginning to break down in the middle of the pot of my Den... the pot is opaque, so I can see the medium. It appears to stay wet beyond it's time. I'm just worried that it will harm the roots down in there, and I can see some roots circling the top near the surface. What would you do? Would you wait until spring to re-pot? Or would you risk it now?

It's the little Dendrobium behind the taller Ansellia. It's been in the same mix for 2 years. I value your opinion. Mike thinks I should wait... I just don't want to lose this little guy... I've actually had him a few years, managed to keep him alive, and last season, he gave me two buds... even though one dropped.

What does everyone think? I'm open to suggestions. Am I just panicking? Should I wait?

    Bookmark   December 11, 2012 at 10:04AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
greenman28 NorCal 7b/8a

Good question, Jodi!

I think that I, too, would wait for warmer weather and stronger sunlight....
but it's probably not a bad idea to do something like add a wick or maybe poke some
extra holes in the container (similar to what you see on orchid pots).

I will tell you this: I received my orchid on November 15th, packed in soggy sphagnum moss.
It wasn't drying out after three weeks. So, sometime before December 21st (that's when I have
an image of the orchid in the new mix), I root-pruned and re-potted. It saved the orchid, no doubt.

I also wanted to add that my orchid is blooming at least a month earlier than it did last year.
I didn't have this much bud development until the second week of January.


    Bookmark   December 11, 2012 at 10:19AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Thanks, Josh... I will try to be patient! LOL!

I suppose I could have the husband drill a few holes into the hard plastic of the pot... maybe that will help it dry out a bit more. A wick is also a good idea.

Thanks so much! I just don't want to lose this cute little guy... he was just a keiki when I got him! I'm actually kind of shocked he's still alive!

A different view, sort of...

    Bookmark   December 11, 2012 at 11:02AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I trust Mike's opinions, and his knowledge... don't get me wrong! Mike grows some gorgeous orchids and other rather difficult to culture plant material, and he does such a fabulous job with everything, and I do trust and value his advice! I just kind of wanted a second opinion... I panicked, and I'm second guessing myself! LOL!

A few weeks ago, when I was going through all the bulbs, re-potting and getting rid of dead items and unnecessary pots of soil, I noticed that the Ansellia's roots didn't look all that great, so I gave it fresh medium, seeing that it's only in a 2" pot. I also used a little dusting of Captan anti-fungal on its root ends, just in case. It seems to be doing fine, now.

But I'm hesitant to do anything with the Den, just because I have such terrible growing conditions to deal with. It's so dry, the humidity level is always low, and the temperature can change drastically due to the type of heating and cooling we have. Basically, my plants live in an east window directly across the room from the AC unit and the propane wall heater. The only saving grace to this situation are two ceiling fans that run constantly to keep air moving around the one large room of our small apartment. Oh, and what little extra light they get from two shop light units I have suspended above the plant alcove.

So, as horrid as this situation is for optimal plant growth, I'm trying my hardest to keep everything happy and healthy.

I think I'll go with the wick suggestion, and see if there's any excess moisture hanging up in the pot, and I'll wait until spring to change out the medium. I'll just keep a close eye on it, and if anything changes, I'll panic again, and come ask you guys for more advice!

Thanks, you guys! I'm just panicking, I know, not wanting to lose this little guy. He's trying so hard to hang in there, growing in such cruddy conditions! The bulbs don't mind so much, but it's not exactly a haven for happy orchid growing, if you know what I mean!

Have a great evening, everyone! (the keys on my keyboard to make a smiley face are broken, but I am smiling!) Maybe "Santa" will bring me a new keyboard! This one has seen much better days!

    Bookmark   December 11, 2012 at 5:57PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Hey everyone, just checking in.\

Al thanks for the info alhough I couldn't read much info on it nor what would cure it. So I went ahead and bought a fungicide called 'Fung-onil' and a systemic one called ' Infuse'..That along with Neem oil should be enough to help me prevent further damage during the winter.

Jodik, I tend to trust Josh's opinion more than my own!
If it were mine I would still get it into a better mix so it would make it through the winter. At least this way, if for some reason I loose any bud set, at least I won't loose the plant. It's not the first time I have had to repot and orchid at this time with no issues, but it is not the best of times either.
It;s one of those things in which the 'I don't care' attitude would pop

Josh!Josh! Nice! I LOVE that orchid and always have buddy! It is a special one and boy does it look great. You have been a true orchid friend and help and I appreciate that.
I love the way the roots look after a nice soak. That is what Jodik plans on doing. Soaking her orchids in warm water, once she gets it situated in a much better mix!
Don't you just love the way the roots green up after a good soaking Josh? I love it.

Jodik. did I tell you how much I like your set-up!? Boy, talk about a room with a view:-)

Rina..You are too funny. Thanks for the

60 yesterday and 50's today. I'll take that. Sprayed the trees my sister dropped off at my home that are in much need of love. I also flushed the pots out if you can't tell they needed it. Look at the massive leaf loss, fruit hanging on and the salt deposits! Poor

OH YES!! I am very excited about this friends...Look at my jade in FULL bloom. I am so excited..:-)

And another favorite I hope to get to flower next year!

Have a good nigh all and to Jojo..Much love to all from Mom and I.


    Bookmark   December 11, 2012 at 9:01PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Mike: It looks a-lot like two army's of Argentina ants had a blast with that citrus trees' foliage. Nice Jade in flower welcome to the N.E. jade flowering club. I'm pretty sure you'll be seeing blooms on the variegated Jade it too looks really good.

Jodi: Horses are my second choice in all time favorite Even when seen in in pics is to admire them for all they can do I know is it is difficult to draw them, as well as it is to care for them financially long story short they are still better and more enjoyable than owning a boat.

JoJo: Strength hopes and prayer for you and your family.

Rina: Man cave jokes, even though they are all funny and are told best by you I think you might not want to be in the real "man cave."


    Bookmark   December 12, 2012 at 12:29AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

PART2 when we get a way to report bugs to GW I can tell them when the edit feature is out of order

Josh: RE it's an older pic but it's a true miniature terrestrial type of orchard. To water it I just drop it in a bigger bowl of water and remove it about an hour later in a week or so I do the same thing. No doubt I am not the best container gardener out here but with out any questions if it or any other plant I have seems to present a problem with keeping a certain pace at growing and doesn't have a quick solution in the existing pot and soil ... the mix in the pot is out and planting would be re-potted in a new mix.
I offer this idea as a solution because I also didn't originate a thought: If there is a problem with the plant 96 % of the time the problem is the ???? Soil
We can quickly rule out or remedy the other 4 % if the problems are sun/lighting, pest or if over/under watering timely feeding ect...

    Bookmark   December 12, 2012 at 12:54AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Jojo...Now it's your turn! Had to run out last night...

How's hubby these days? Did the appointment go well? You know you are in our prayers here. Been thinking a lot of you these days. Mom sends many hugs your way and if there is anything we can do to help, please ask:-)

It's so good to see you back and helping many out here. It's also wonderful to read your posts again in which many missed dearly.

Get back to me, us, ok?

Hey Wes..That looks like some miniature sort of Vandia? I love it pal. You're doing a great job with it. I wonder if its flowers are fragrant?
Lol., you are too funny with the


    Bookmark   December 12, 2012 at 8:02AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Hey, guys! Thanks for the extra advice! I really appreciate it!

When I see roots at the surface of a pot, any pot, circling the wagons, so to speak... well, I tend to worry a bit. I know orchids aren't like most plants, in that air roots are normal... but even so. It kind of makes me wonder why those roots are growing up top, looking for air. There should be plenty of fresh oxygen to be had below the medium surface, given the type of mix it's in.

And, given the type of mix it's in, that makes me think the center area of medium is beginning to break down a bit. Two years is probably long enough, and since the pot is opaque, I can kind of see what's going on... at least more toward the outer limits of medium, and that's looking a little past its prime, though still holding onto some structure.

From all this, I can deduce that medium is definitely the issue, and a change of medium is the solution. The only question is... when? By wicking it now, I can see how much moisture is hanging up, and that will tell me if I should dive in now, or wait until spring.

You guys have been most helpful, thank you!

Mike, I love that blooming Jade, and that variegated Jade... wow! I know you can bring that one to bloom, too! They look like little trees with sturdy trunks! It's not often one sees a Jade in cultivation blooming, which means it's incredibly happy with its present situation! Great job, Mike!

And I know you can fix that citrus. You'll probably have it looking really nice way before spring ever gets here! Is it insect damage? Or do you think it's just salt accumulation and other issues? This is prime time for spider mites to take hold, and it looks like a little dust or mineral accumulation on the leaves... but that could just be how the light hits it in the photos, too. I can't really tell. It does have fruit, though, so... and I'm certainly no citrus expert! I'd say it's in capable hands!

Mrlike2u, that looks like a... Neofinetia? Is that correct? There are so many orchid types, it's often difficult to pin it down to an exact name. It sure looks healthy, though, and if it IS a neofinetia, it's in a medium they're not often grown in, as I normally see them in more mossy circumstances. But many are very small in stature, and often potted in what appear to be bonsai type pots, so that's why I'm guessing it's a neofinetia. It looks nice in the fir bark medium!

The thing that blows my mind about Josh's Cattleya is that it looks so perfect in normal household conditions! Every pseudobulb and leaf looks hydrated, fed, and totally content... and the roots are plump and happy, which is often a concern in normal household conditions. And it's got buds, as if it were languishing somewhere in a rain forest where it wants to be! The man has skills!

Every orchid I've ever gotten has come in looking that way, and in short order they're gasping their last breaths! I have concluded that the atmosphere is simply too dry to keep many types happy, but those that can tolerate a bit of dry in the humidity department will do alright if I keep a close eye on moisture and medium.

Knowing when to water is important, but using a larger particled medium helps take the sting out of that part, and offers a much larger window for error.

It's funny... people are always telling me how Phals are the easiest orchids to grow in the home... and every single one I've had has succumbed to one error or another in my hands. I did once bring a small Phal to bloom, but it died shortly afterward.

Epidendrums and Encyclias were also offered as easier to culture in a home environment, but I didn't have success with those, either. This tiny Dendrobium, and the Ansellia, are the only two I've managed to keep going.

I attribute their lives to the Gritty Mix, mainly... they do seem to thrive in it! But it must be freshened in good order, as is apparent by my present situation.

It's under control, and I thank you all for your offered advice... you've all been most helpful! It's not unusual for me to second guess myself at times, though I don't normally panic. This little Den is special, though, and I really don't want it to die. It was gift, and I've managed to keep it going for a few years, which is a feat in itself given the conditions I'm forced to work with! I would like to succeed, and bring it to bloom again... and I think that's entirely possible.

I have yet to set up a little water feature, which I think will help, if only a tiny bit. Procrastination is the only thing holding me back! I just have to ask the old guy to drill a hole in the ceramic pot I've been saving for the project. I have all the other pieces ready to go... the tiny pump, the tubing, the rocks and gravel, etc...

Oh! I nearly forgot! About a year or so ago, I was generously gifted with a Gloriosa corm. Since I have to keep it indoors during inclement weather, it has no choice but to sit in the plant alcove among everything else. I had thought it expired due to my inexperience with them, but lo and behold! It's putting forth a shoot right now! I'm shocked! It's about 8" tall, growing in a gallon nursery pot! I have a tall stake ready to support it.

Gloriosa, December 2012...

And, "Minerva", the bulb, is sturdily growing a gorgeous scape and several leaves! I'm so excited, and can't wait to see her in all her glory! I need to take more pictures, I think, so I can share her growth!

Got it done! Here she is!

Mike, I love the view here, myself... there's nothing nicer than waking up to the sun shining in, and looking out the window to see horses and goats grazing the pasture, or the occasional deer making their way across the field. Sometimes, you can even catch a glimpse of coydogs, coyotes, or fox running along the far fence line. The view out of all our windows is actually pretty nice, when you consider that we're located on a corner, out in the middle of nowhere!

It's tough to get a good photograph when the sun is coming in, but I tried...

And, looking up...

If you ignore the dust on lower shelves, and please do, this is my little alcove for plants and potting in more detail...

Okay... I think I got them all in. That's it for this morning... Rosie is waiting to go out, and I have to get moving for the day...

I want to thank you guys again for the opinions and advice. It's very helpful, really! Here's to a great day for everyone! Talk at everyone later! (a big smile, and a wave to Mom!)

    Bookmark   December 12, 2012 at 9:57AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo


now you got me it possible to share some (I probably shouldn't ask!!!) secrets from the real man-cave?...Rina

    Bookmark   December 12, 2012 at 4:55PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
greenman28 NorCal 7b/8a

Wow, great pics Jodi...that's quite a plant alcove!
Minerva is really looking fat and happy, like a nesting hen ;-)

You guys are going to give me a big head with all the compliments, hehe. A broad spectrum
of plants seem to enjoy my location, despite the dry conditions in Winter...and most of it has to do
with having enough sunlight, I think.

For your Orchid, certainly examine the put your mind at ease. If the roots are in poor health,
re-pot now. If the roots are fine, but the bark is degrading, use the wick as a test (as you mentioned).

Mike, your Jades are blooming so nicely!
You have more blooms on one branch than I have on all three of my blooming Jades combined! ;-D
And I've never gotten my Citrus to bloom the way yours do. One day maybe I'll get there, hehe.
Where on earth are you going to rehabilitate these trees?!

Wes, that's a sweet little ground Orchid.
I saturate my container the same way - setting the whole pot in slightly warm water until the mix
is heavy with moisture. I love the look of bright bark as a backdrop to the green and white roots.

Al and JoJo, Rina, Laura, hello to you, too! :-D


    Bookmark   December 12, 2012 at 5:15PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Rina: Man cave secrets would of never been answered anyways but as you said in italics I can now say..... Your right you probably shouldn't of asked.
It's only because of your sense of humor I gracefully add if your certain the automatic wrinkle guard sensor self timed 22Ov appliance ate those soaks while the men where all present in the man cave you might want to think again.

Jodi: Your indoor jungle is looking nice I see a few neat clean ready to go pots all nicely stacked in corner but what dust ? Thoughtful of you to try an ID results are in and sorry. No but I will certainly be adding one or two them to my must get plants very nice and graceful. As a certain ID Neofinetia ( I think you knew ) would be easy to catch my eye

Mike: If ants made you laugh or me telling you about ants make you laugh means you know than your saying about ants. It's good that we don't let them bug us to much and it's always good to laugh about things we know about.
I already know you are a fragrant flower fan not just yours but in any garden Yet not to disappoint you, but what if it wasn't fragrant ? Either way and trying to be fair it isn't a Vandia.
Although it is still doing well as you mentioned I think Rina who's still trying to decode the secret meanings behind the man cave language still wants a little prof.

Some kind of Tolumnia orchid in pic taken today to show that it is ....

In focus

    Bookmark   December 12, 2012 at 11:19PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
jojosplants(9/ Tucson, Az.)

Hi Everyone!
Boy! I'm gone for a day or 2 and look at all the reading to catch up on! I'm enjoying it all!

Gosh.. Where to start!?!

Thank you all for your kind words, and support! Al~Josh~Jodi~Mike~Laura~Mrlike2u... It means the world to me! I say that with all my heart! Sorry I didn't get back here sooner. A lot busy and a little down.

Our appointment Monday did not go as well as hoped, but we are keeping a positive attitude, as best we can. DH is in fairly good spirits.
Josh~ Thanks for asking. :-) Hubby is just starting to get around and work on little things around here. I'm going to have to give him a chores list too! I'm not around much these days and if he's gonna be hanging around I'm putting him to work! LOL!
A shelf for plants in my "mom cave" for starters! lol..
I'm exhausted to be honest with you. It has been good and helpful in a lot of ways to be back here though. I have Mike and mom to thank for the extra push I needed. :-)

Mike.. your sweet to offer to help.. Just knowing I have such a wonderful friend and loving mom helps more than you could imagine. :-)

Laura~ We'll chat soon..I'll email you.. :-) and I know I need to get caught up with my twin too. ;-) xoxox...

Well...Jodi~ (you know it still seems funny to see my name when talking to you. lol ) Your plant area looks great! I have 2 of the little green shelves/greenhouses that you have and love them! Need to make a new cover for one though. some dummy left the plastic out all summer. lol...

Mrlike~ I love the little plant/orchid and the pot it is in. :-)
Josh~ so excited to see yours about to bloom again! The only thing I know about these plants is how to kill them fast! lol... Tried 2 and they didn't last long. :-)

I've been trying to keep busy to keep sanity.. and have been working on my plant/craft room. Its almost done! My little escape! Need to put up a shelf across the south window.. organize a few more things, and bring in the soft chair!

Jodi~ looking forward to seeing "Minerva" bloom! I love your flowers!! I lost my only bulb.. but will try again later. Also enjoyed the Charlie update and horses. They are my All time love!! We have a horse at the end of the street I love to walk down and see when I need to get away.

Finger is doing better guys! Thanks! :-) I hate boo boos in dumb places! lol..

We've had 2 days of cold mornings.. and like Jodi~ I hate it! I'm ready for spring too! lol.. twins think alike. ;-) still unusually warm in the days though.

well.. I need to go for now and take care of a few things so I can call it a night. I will look in again soon.


    Bookmark   December 13, 2012 at 12:31AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
chilliwin(EU DK 7)

Anything you wanna talk about! I have a lot but for now only I would like to do copy and patch something from the FAQ:


Top 10 Reasons That Show You're Addicted to Winter Sowing

10. You keep receiving "Get Well Soon" and "We Miss You" cards from the local Nursery due to your absence.

9. Your family's diet now consists of the 4 basic food groups of Winter Sowing; large containers, medium containers, small containers and soda bottles.

8. You are able to leap tall buildings in a single bound, just to catch the perfect container before it hits the trash basket.

7. You have caught the meter reader, the mailman and the paperboy peering into your containers looking for sprouts.

6. The stock boy at WalMart's is off on sick leave due to the hernia he received while loading your potting soil.

5. Every time you see a sprout and do the "Happy Dance" dogs run for shelter, children roll on the ground in fits of laughter and passerby drive off the road.

4. The neighbors recognize your backside before they recognize your face because you're always bent over peeping into milk jugs.

3. The decline of the stock market and the slow economy can be directly traced back to Winter Sowers not spending huge amounts of money on seed starting paraphernalia and plants from Greenhouses.

2. You have decided to name your next born "Trudi", even if it is a boy.

1. And the #1 reason you know you're addicted to Winter Sowing is that you have dirt under your nails, a smile on your face and money left over in your wallet!

Hope you enjoy this.


Thank you again April for sharing this list with're fabulous!


PS....I like reason number 2 the most!

Entered by Trudi_d


I like this writing so I copied and patched here. I do not know who are these writers in fact.


    Bookmark   December 13, 2012 at 12:08PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I'm so glad the layer of dust isn't that obvious! LOL! It's such a pain to clear the shelving just to remove the layer of dust that is guaranteed to reappear the next day! It somehow makes its way upstairs through vents and window cracks, the stairwell, etc... and I would imagine the herd of dogs downstairs has something to do with it, as does living on a corner in flat, windy, dusty farm country, in a drafty old farmhouse!

We actually dust all the electronic equipment daily. No lie!

Thanks for the compliments on my little plant alcove! I like it... it's pleasant to work in, and nice to have everything handy, in one area. It makes dusting and window cleaning difficult, but plant care easy! LOL!

Mrlike2u - A Tolumnia! Aha! After guessing Neofinetia, I checked out Ebay, as I often do, looking at their orchid offerings... and I see that Tolumnia and a few other types have a similar form. It's a neat little orchid... that's for sure! What do the flowers look like?

Josh - You do such a nice job with plants... I have yet to see anything you grow look not up to par! Mike's plants, too! And Laura's, and too many others'! You guys are consummate growers! Is that a south window the Catt is in?

I did a little reading on Dens, and I learned that mine might need cooler temperatures to really set good buds... I'm wondering if I should move it to the south window towards the end of summer, when the leaves fall off the Sycamores outside that window... it's something to consider, anyway. From late spring to fall, the southern exposure is blocked by those trees. East gives me the most light during such time, but it is warmer. South is in the stairwell, with an outer doorway underneath.

JoJo - I know how rare the chances of meeting someone with our name is! I'm glad you're JoJo and I'm Jodi... eliminating some confusion! Of course, I could always just go by Hag... that's what the old guy calls me... which is why everyone calls him Old Guy! LOL!

I think if it weren't for Lupus, my bones would tolerate the cold a little better. I swear, I seize up when it gets cold, and I don't completely thaw out until spring! I hate it! It's painful, with a constant high level ache, and the shape my spine is in doesn't help. You should see the x-rays... you'd freak out! The human neck curves in one direction... mine curves the other way. It's gross to look at, in the x-rays, and it's painful to live with!

Ah, I can't really complain that much... I've got a great doctor, a great chiropractor, and a great husband that does deep tissue massage and accu-pressure to help alleviate some of the pain and keep me in one piece! I'm really lucky, when you think about it! I could just keep falling apart! LOL!

Last night, Rosie slept on top of me half the night, and I had to keep pushing her off my legs! I woke up about 2 am with the worst charlie horses in both calves and feet! My toes were all curled up and tight, the ligaments out of place... it was horrid! I... or my immune system... seems to be attacking my muscles and ligaments, too, now!

So, I haven't slept much, I'm up 2 pots of coffee, and I think the caffeine is the only thing holding me upright! LOL!

I'm so looking forward to seeing this "Minerva" bloom! It's a gifted replacement for my old one, which succumbed to narcissus bulb fly. I'm so thrilled to have this, I can't tell you! I'm so thankful! She's going to be beautiful, I know! I take a photo or two every few days to log her growth... and she's doing good. I'd like to place her closer to the window, but I'd have to bump other bulbs that are smaller and need the light. She's doing great, though... and will be a wonderful source of joy when in bloom!

I plan to self her, or pollinate her to herself, which will produce seed pods with hundreds of seeds, hopefully! I'd love to share them! Easy to germinate and grow, and only 2-3 years from seed to bloom!

Take your time with email, JoJo... we're just glad to have you with us! And I'm sure I can say that we all wish you guys well, and are thinking about you, sending positive vibes and prayers. All we can do is keep pushing forward, one day at a time... that's how we survive. We try not to let it all overwhelm us. Every day is new and open to great possibility... and I think it helps to let some of the negative stuff just roll off our shoulders. Take deep breaths often, enjoy the sunshine, and smile just because.

Sometimes, I feel totally defeated by life, JoJo... but there's also so much good around me that that's what I grab and hold onto.... my kids, my grandkids, my old guy, my great friends, my dogs, and my gardening, my plants... the love is overwhelming, and that's what I let wash over me. It sustains me, fills me up, and keeps me moving forward! You have it, too, my sister... you have that all around you. Let it in, so it can take the place of anything negative! (huge smile and hugs!) We DO have the inner power to lift ourselves above it all!

Winter sowing is something I've never done... though those are funny top ten reasons, Chilliwin! The local folks around here know me by my barn boots and gardening gloves, which I always seem to be wearing when we need to run to town for anything! Do I feel funny walking in a store that way, wearing milk house boots, garden gloves, with my hair all piled up on top my head? Not in the least! What's worse is... I probably smell like a kennel or a goat farm! LOL!

Okay... I must get moving and get my chores done... have a great day, everyone!

    Bookmark   December 13, 2012 at 2:39PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
tapla (mid-MI z5b-6a)

I don't get here as often as I used to. Thought I'd better check in & say hey, and wish everyone who's ailing, better times ahead.

It's weird - I never open the mail at work, but today I did. We got a Christmas card from our attorney. Inside, it said, "I wish you, but in no way guarantee you, a Merry Christmas."


    Bookmark   December 13, 2012 at 9:14PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
lindasewandsew(So Cal 9)

This is a great thread. I want all the flowers, and love the jokes and the photos of men being inventive. It's amazing what stupid things people get away with so many times, then when they get killed doing it, everyone around them are surprised by it.

Here's a bottle Christmas tree I made in the front yard. I tried a few strings of lights without good results, but will keep trying. Linda

    Bookmark   December 14, 2012 at 12:41AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
chilliwin(EU DK 7)

Hello Jodic,

I have some problems with my plants and I was looking for some information to control the PH level in soil and to find out the possible root causes of my plants� problems. Normally I like to use simple and available materials to solve the problems, some kinds of home remedy.

I do Google to get some information but the links sent me to this site again and again, then I end up here. This forum is too big and it has a lot of educational and practical information, it is beyond my imagination.

Then I found the FAQ of this forum. I was reading thread by thread, some of them I saved in my clips for reference and future reading. When I read this "Top 10 Reasons That Show You're Addicted to Winter Sowing" it made me LOL. I have been doing Winter Sowing since last few months and it also reminds me one of my family members. Then I copied and patched here.

I would like to talk/ask about container gardening. However I have to read the available information in this forum first before I start talking. Otherwise I may be repeated the same questions again and again. I have been learning a lot from our respectable gardeners here. Now I remember some of the names who are contributing a great value to this forum too.

I really enjoy the uploaded pictures and the way people express their feelings on different ways.
Enjoy your times everyone :))

Sincere regards,

    Bookmark   December 14, 2012 at 2:25AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
chilliwin(EU DK 7)

Very nice and creative Christmas Tree. How many hours it took to build it? How many bottles you used? Just I am curious.

    Bookmark   December 14, 2012 at 2:30AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Jodi: Smaller than a manicured pinky finger nail

    Bookmark   December 14, 2012 at 8:04AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
jojosplants(9/ Tucson, Az.)

Now is that an average nail or extra long one like my acrylic nails? ;-) jk...
That is BEAUTIFUL!!! Great picture to catch such detail on such a little flower!!
Is it fragrant?

I think the macro setting on my camera is about to kick the bucket. sigh....:-(


    Bookmark   December 14, 2012 at 9:17AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

LOL, Al! Even legalese at Christmas, eh?! It IS humorous, though!

I like the blue bottle Christmas tree... hmm, I wonder if there is any way you could get one tiny white light bulb from those mini-light strings inside the neck of each bottle as you're putting it together, maybe with a little piece of tape? That would make quite a lighted display! It looks great now, though!

Mrlike2u - they remind me a little of mini Oncid blooms... but much smaller! They're beautiful!

Chilliwin - you'd have to ask Al or Josh about Ph... that is, unfortunately, not my area of expertise. However, I CAN direct to you the first source I would read for the basics in container growing. Look in this forum, the Container Gardening Forum, for a thread written by Tapla, entitled "Container Soils - Water Movement & Retention XV". That is, in my opinion, the best starting point to learning.

When I mixed my last batches of Gritty Mix, all I added was a sprinkling of Osmocote, a teaspoon or less of prilled Gypsum per large bucket-load... and once potted, the plants or bulbs got a bit of a granular systemic to ward off insects.

I don't worry so much about Ph. I'd go nuts trying to maintain perfection in all these pots. But since my medium is more inorganic, I would think the water would be the source of any Ph difficulty, should I have any, and that's where I'd begin any testing or adjusting. If you're using a bagged soil, that might not be the case.

My medium consists of fir bark, granite chips, turface, coarse perlite, tiny bits of Osmocote and gypsum... all screened to remove dust/fine particles, or pieces that are too large. Consistency is one of the keys.

I also do a little custom mixing due to my incredibly dry indoor conditions, as in adding a handful of high quality potting mix for a bit of additional moisture retention. Some might think that defeats the whole purpose of the medium... and ordinarily, it would... but I need that extra retention in some pots.

Personally, I've found that the industry does not offer consumers what plants need in the way of mediums, and it's better to begin at square one, locate my own ingredients, and mix my own medium custom to my growing conditions... which will differ from anyone else's. It offers me a wider margin for error in watering, holds its structure longer, and requires less disturbing less often for re-potting purposes.

To make a long story shorter... any Ph issues I might have would most likely be attributed to the water I use, and not to the soil... because it's basically inorganic... so I try to use water that comes directly from our well, bypassing any water softener or other source that would be changed on its way to the faucet. If I had a holding tank or barrel, I'd collect rain water, bring it indoors in gallon jugs, and allow it to come to ambient room temperature before using it.

As far as plant nutrition goes, everyone seems to like Foliage Pro fertilizer. Since I don't have any right now, I use an all purpose liquid plant food weakened to about 1/4 strength, the addition of micro-nutrients, and I use this pretty much all year round. About every 4th or 5th watering, I use plain water just to flush out anything that may be accumulating. So far, so good.

Each grower's conditions and methods differ so greatly that it's often best to adjust details to fit your own conditions and methods. There really is no "one size fits all" way to grow in containers... although, using a more inorganic approach seems to even the playing field a bit, so to speak, by allowing a larger margin for error.

In the end, it all comes down to basic science and physics... just the facts. And I would say that information can be found in the aforementioned article, "Container Soils - Water Movement & Retention XV".

Hope everyone has a great day! I'm off to see what Ebay has to offer that I can't afford! LOL! Then it's out to do chores!

Happy Growing!

    Bookmark   December 14, 2012 at 10:03AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
greenman28 NorCal 7b/8a

Good morning! A nice and frosty 30F here :-)

JoJo, what are the temps like in sunny Arizona?

Jodi, I didn't notice the dust at all. I guess I look past that sort of thing in an area
with plants. I know that I'm desensitized to a few leaves here and there...

Wes, that's a real nice bloom, and so small! What time of year does yours bloom?

Caelian, great work on your Bottle Tree. Do you have other art like this in your yard?

Jodi's right about the pH of the mix itself. It's not as important as the pH of your watering
and fertilizing solution. If you can rule out other limiting variables, such as lack of light,
over/under watering, lack of nutrients, et cetera, the soil mix is generally the culprit to your
root problems. It may seem that we "jump to conclusions" regarding potting soils and advising folks
to re-pot into a proper mix, but we're playing the odds, drawing from years of experience and thousands
of questions about plant health/soil relationship. In other words, we could dance around the issue
and talk about light, fertilizer, misting, singing to plants, and other tertiaries....or we can
narrow in on the most likely cause of plant decline - unhappy roots.


    Bookmark   December 14, 2012 at 11:22AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
jojosplants(9/ Tucson, Az.)

The sun forgot to come out today in Sunny Arizona! :-/

Cold! Wet! Yucky! lol.. A storm rolled in last night. And even though it's much needed rain, i'm not happy. ;-) It's just starting to let up now. And it's 50*


    Bookmark   December 14, 2012 at 12:11PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
lindasewandsew(So Cal 9)

The Christmas tree has about 175 bottles. It took one day to make and is on a garden obelisk. The bottles are strung on wire, which is twisted between them and hung on the tree. Here's another photo that shows more about how it's made.

Thanks for the light idea. The bottles are close enough together to do that.

There's a lot of junk in my yard, mostly works in progress, lol, but I've finished some things. You can look up my user name on the Garden Junk Forum and see photos. There's a link below.

Here is a link that might be useful: Garden Junk Forum

    Bookmark   December 14, 2012 at 2:21PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I confess... I have peeked at your garden projects and stuff in the past, and I like a lot of it! I collect rocks, bricks, the odd piece of wood, metal or other farm item I dig up as I'm going along, and use them in little areas of the gardens, myself! I also have a small collection of old garden tools and fruit crates and items that I want to do something with one day... I just don't know what yet.

All I can add, Josh, is that happy, healthy plants begin at the roots... and I think we tend to forget that, or not think about it, when we're first beginning to delve deeply into container growing and getting everything right.

Reading Al's article helped me immensely, though... I can say that with all sincerity.

JoJo, it's cold and damp here, and I could just whine and complain all day... I'm coming down with a cold, and I feel like hammered crap, if you know what I mean! LOL! Maybe I can find a hole to crawl in until spring, do some hibernating like a bear!

    Bookmark   December 14, 2012 at 5:10PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
chilliwin(EU DK 7)

Thank you Jodik for the advice, when it is necessary I'd request to Tapla, A1 and Josh for advice. I have some writings of Tapla, Josh and others still keep reading. Some of them are very long but it worth to read and describe very well. They are very resourceful and I think they are remarkable writers too. I am collecting information for an ebook of gardening for my personal use.

Just like you mentioned.
"To make a long story shorter... any Ph issues I might have would most likely be attributed to the water I use and not to the soil...".

Almost the same advice " Josh have replied to the thread "bhutjolokia PH & more" too.

" Here's the a container, soil pH is far less important than in the ground. What is important is the pH of the watering/fertigating solution. In the container, pH is constantly changing, depending upon moisture levels, fertility levels, and temperature."

I agreed both of your advice. It is really important to me.

I started to mix vinegar for watering, it is one of the best information I got here. Next season I will know the result of my gardening. Accordingly I should do some adjustment. I cannot copy everything what other gardeners do:)) Thank you for all these information and advice it is valuable.

Josh thank you for the advice I really appreciate.
Sometimes I have been in this forum now I started to realize gardening is not simple as I thought before.

Thank you lindasewandsew you have done very well I have never seen such type of bottle Christmas Tree before. It looks very nice. May be the next year we may see more bottle Christmas Tree.


    Bookmark   December 14, 2012 at 5:19PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Why does Santa have 3 gardens?

So he can ho-ho-ho...................

If athletes get athletes foot, what do astronauts get?
Missle toe...........

What do elves learn in school?

The Elf-abet!...........

What do you call a penguin in the Sahara desert?


    Bookmark   December 15, 2012 at 8:45AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
tapla (mid-MI z5b-6a)

HI, Guys! Nice pictures & comments upthread. I really liked the orchid.

Nice to see you made it, Linda. We'll be looking for the pictures of your shed, once you get to the point you feel like sharing pictures of it. Your bottle tree rocks, too. I can see a lot of effort went into it.

Rainy day here, just above freezing. I work until noon, then go home to cook for a Christmas party at my wife's ex's. ;-) He's single, so we usually include him and his mother for holiday dinners or cookouts when the kids are here (2 of our kids are his sons). We always have a crowd, so 1 or 2 more is no burden.

I hope everyone that shops has their shopping done, or almost done, and the spirit of the season is upon you, regardless of beliefs.

Take care.


    Bookmark   December 15, 2012 at 10:38AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
jojosplants(9/ Tucson, Az.)

Cold , wet, yucky again today! Jodi~ I'm looking for a hole too!!!!

Haven't even started shopping and not planning on much. My heart is just not in the Holiday this year. :-( Can't even get it together to bake. :-(

Have fun cooking Al~

Mrlike~~ Too funny!!!!! Love the last one!!!! Poor little penguin! LOL!!!

Linda! I love the tree! I remember some of your posts from before I left gardenweb. What you do is amazing!! What are the blue bottles from? How long did it take to gather enough for a tree?

I have a fan from the truck that someday I will paint as a daisy, an old mailbox holds my tools, and have a toilet that I will plant someday with the hopes to annoy the Home owners association. hehehe.... Oh and old garden gloves are stuffed and hung around the yard for scarecrows so to say. lol...


    Bookmark   December 15, 2012 at 11:28AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I, too, have copied and pasted Al's (tapla) articles to a file on my desktop, so I can reference the material when I need to. I sometimes go back and check medium recipes, or read about fertilizers, etc... it's handy to have.

It's rather like we tell people looking for dog trainers... and as breeders, we're asked that question a lot... find the trainer who has the best dogs, with clients who have the best dogs, in the area of training you're interested in, whether obedience, protection, or any other particular discipline, and that's who you want to consider when it comes to your dogs. The same holds true of plants... find the person that grows the best and offers advice that helps others grow the best plants... and that's who you want to direct your questions to.

Their plants tell the entire story... and in light of the fact that Al speaks publicly on the subjects, writes excellent articles, and grows amazing bonsai, I think it's safe to say that he holds an amazing amount of knowledge! Then, adjust for your own unique conditions/environment... and there you have it!

In the end, knowledge is power. Knowing the basic facts, the basics of science, of how plants grow... the vast differences between growing in the ground and growing in containers... will net you the best results. Begin at the roots, and you'll have healthy plants.

At one time, I was very frustrated, and I thought it was complicated, too... but it's not! Once you read the basic, beginning article... which contains the basic information all broken down in easy to understand language, it all becomes very clear. It helped me a lot to separate growing into two categories... growing in the ground, and growing in containers. Once I did that, I could concentrate on one area... growing in pots/containers.

We'd go nuts trying to imitate what Mother Nature does in the ground or garden, so I save organic growing for the ground... and go with a more inorganic, easy to control method for growing in pots. Within smaller, confined spaces, it helps a lot if we are in control of moisture, nutrition, soil ingredients, light, insect control, etc...

JoJo - if there were a way to go into cryo-sleep until spring, I'd seriously consider it! LOL!

Christmas has become so over commercialized, plastic, and about consumerism that we wouldn't even bother if it weren't for the Grandkids. Christmas is for them. We only shop for the little ones. Adults are too many, and not enough of us in the family have the budget, so we make the holiday all about the kids! For the adults, we're happy we're all able to gather in one place to share dinner and visit.

We gather on Christmas Day at my daughter-in-law's Father's house, down the block from my son, and the whole family sits down to a large dinner. Her Dad likes to cook. Then, the kids open presents or play outside. The adults catch up, pitch in to clean up after dinner, grab some leftovers to take with... and that's it. We spend about 3-5 days at my son's, visit a few friends while in the area, and the family is in and out for the week, everyone visiting.

We take Rosie with. She has her own travel crate and accessories. LOL! She gets to see all the excitement, gets teased by the kids' cat, and gets fed a few leftovers and things she probably shouldn't have.

I used to bake a little for the holidays, long ago. Life changes, though... and I don't have the means or energy to bake. I'm not the greatest cook, anyway!

I would very much dislike having a Homeowner's Association to direct how I live on my own property... though your situation is a little different, JoJo. I think I'd probably look for ways to live on the edge, too! LOL! It's sometimes fun to "poke the bear"!

Josh - I'm glad you can't see the dust! I tore apart the whole alcove and cleaned, but pooped out when I got to the lower shelves used for storage... where nothing grows! LOL! I did vacuum, though, so I got the majority of dust, I guess.

Mrlike2u - LOL! I like the last one, too!

I don't want to forget anyone, so I won't list names... I hope everyone has a nice Holiday Season, and I hope everyone enjoys whatever it is they do for Christmas and the New Year! Whether you're cooking, or visiting, or doing nothing special... have a safe and happy time!

I have some pictures to share when I get them uploaded... so I will be back at some point...

Happy Growing!

    Bookmark   December 16, 2012 at 9:05AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

The view on a frosty morning...

H. Minerva as of last night...

And the Gloriosa Vine...

Those are the current items growing, and the view I see most winter mornings, unless there's snow on the ground! There's some patience involved in blooming Hippeastrum bulbs, but once they take a little time to come out of dormancy, root in, and push their scapes, it's only a matter of time before the blooms open! I couldn't be more excited to see this one flower!

I'm also hoping that the Gloriosa vine knows what it's doing... I'm not certain this is the time for growth, but I can't allow the corm to dry out and shrivel, so... we'll just have to wait and see what it does! It did rest previously, so it should be fine as long as I take care of it.

Have a nice day, everyone!

    Bookmark   December 16, 2012 at 11:02AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
jojosplants(9/ Tucson, Az.)

Cyber sleep sounds good! lol.. Woke to a very cold morning of 32 @ 6am. Don't know the actual low that was expected. DH hogs the tv and I don't catch much news.

I think same name is interesting, but to have the same spelling makes it even stranger. lol.. and how many things we are alike in!! ;-)

I looked up Russian Sage, and I don't think that is the plant I have. It suggests silver foliage, and mine is green. But very similar to the sage. I will try and post a more recent pic. still looking for the tag. lol.

Last night I came across a bag of seeds I had gotten on ebay last Feb. that got lost in the shuffle and so I have tons of goodies for spring!! A lot of flowers! a vegie or 2. ;-) Morning Glories, one of my favorite! and Datura's! Oh they smell sweet and attract my favorite moth, the sphinx moth. Which come from the famous tomato worm! I don't kill the worm anymore, I grow an extra tomato/host plant for them now.

Your bulb is coming along nicely! I would love seeds if you get them.

as for the Home Owners Association, I go way beyond "poke the bear" I make it down right MAD! LOL!!! What do you mean by my situation may be a little different?
Right now the big thing is every month they go around and write up every home that has weeds or grass and items out of place on patio! Well the common grounds haven't been taken care of in over 6 months, and weeds and grass go to seed, end up in my yard! so I've asked them for the job, and they wont' give it to me, but pay some other fool $600- $700 a month to do nothing! I have pics. A friend is looking into getting a group together to sue for harassment. Yards is just a drop in the bucket.

I also have an old sink I want to put next to the toilet! Out by the mailbox, and will be planting something called Peter Peppers. Hehehe.. Yes, the name suggests the shape! ROFL!!!
They actually are paprika when dried and ground. lol..

I'm with the others on the dust. ;-) One it's not that noticeable, and it's kinda expected around plants. lol..

Josh!~ how do you motivate a child to do better in school when teachers don't care and wont try!
My son is not doing well and I've turned him over to my brother for tutoring. (my brother is the perfect person for the job, he is a genus) yes, he got the brains, so mom gave me the looks. lol..
Anyway a meeting with the teachers recently we found out if my son isn't doing the work in class, the teachers just choose to let it go and not punish him or bother to tell us!! We didn't know how bad things were till progress reports came out. Make matters worse, they said this in front of my son, so he now knows they don't care !! Ugh!!!

Input from any and all is welcome!~ but I ask Josh for good reasons. ;-) Lets just say he knows about teaching. ;-)

I need to motivate.
talk to you all soon!


Here is a link that might be useful: Sphinx moth.

    Bookmark   December 17, 2012 at 10:27AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
greenman28 NorCal 7b/8a

Hello, friends!

First, Linda, sorry for mistaking you for Caelian on the bottle tree!

Caelian, you are correct...that soil pH info is something that I spread around GardenWeb...
and I spend a lot of time in the Hot Pepper Forum during the prime growing season.

Jodi, Minerva is really pushing now! Very exciting to see that thick bulb extending a bloom.

It's raining here again, so the overnight temps have only been in the 40F's and 50F's.
There is a lot of snow falling above 4,000 feet elevation, though. It's been a great season.

This weekend, my friends and I had our Christmas Party...a big feast with adult beverages and a bonfire :-)
Snow flurries greeted us as we arrived at the house at 2,500 feet elevation, but nothing stuck to the
already rain-sodden roads. We exchanged gifts and had a blast. Yesterday, I went to my sister's house
and helped her with a massive burn-pile in a drizzling mist.

JoJo, that's a tough question. If your brother shows that he's interested in helping your son,
that might be all it takes to turn things around - a single caring individual. Motivation comes
from outside and inside, extrinsic and intrinsic. The threat of bad grades is extrinsic and clearly
not working. So, somehow, we've got to get your son self-motivated, intrinsically, and tap into
whatever interests he has. Ultimately, there is nothing that a teacher can really *do* - and often,
the more we try to do, the more we drive students away. I've been in the position where I've had
to let students sink when they refuse to reach for the life-raft. But, in my experience, it's a
lack of support or intellectual curiosity at home that dooms children to academic mediocrity and
failure. An involved parent is the best medicine...and something of a rarity when it comes to public
schools and children at risk of failing.


    Bookmark   December 17, 2012 at 1:26PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Good morning!

It's definitely colder today... the chill you guys to the west recently received has reached me... thanks a lot! LOL!

JoJo - I mean that every Association is different, so yours could have different rules.

From what I hear, some Associations are downright Nazi-like! I could never live where someone had the power to tell me what to do within the confines of my own yard! I could never deal with anyone telling me what I could grow, what I could park in my driveway, what color the paint or shingles had to be, when to cut my grass, etc... and I wouldn't want to be on the other end of that equation, either. I'm not a control freak. Live and let live... that's our motto.

I don't deal well with authority/control in some cases, and I couldn't live where that would be tested, let's just say. The consequences might not reach a conclusion that leaves everyone smiling... I'd be doing the same things you are! LOL! That's why I love living so far out in the middle of nowhere. There is no one holding power over me and how I choose to live.

Long ago, that was tested by some over enthusiastic townsfolk who thought their rules outweighed the Constitution. Long story, but let's just say they found out differently, and were not happy about the end results. Some people have a hard time losing, evidently. Amazingly, and most childishly, a county can and will hold a grudge when they lose a case.

I don't know why they would object to saving some money and letting a resident take care of common grounds, though... that sounds kind of foolish on their part. You have a vested interest. A hired service wouldn't. Hiring a resident would actually work in their favor. It definitely might be worth getting deeper into it, legally. At the very least, it may get the Association to back off you and others they want to harass.

I would wholeheartedly agree with Josh... an involved parent is without doubt the best medicine. My Mom used to tell me that being a parent wasn't a popularity contest, and that we would thank her someday for maintaining a strict regimen... and it's very true. I was the wild child, not much for academic study, but through my parents strict guidance, I graduated. Granted, my aspirations weren't the 6 figure type... I wanted to be a wife and mother, to raise a family... but I'm very glad my parents stuck with me, encouraging me to finish school, to gain that education.

We don't realize it until we're adults, but that basic education is a necessary part of life. It's a necessary stepping stone to college, or to any avenue, job or profession-wise. Even the armed forces won't accept an entrant without a high school diploma or GED.

"'s a lack of support or intellectual curiosity at home that dooms children to academic mediocrity and failure."

Well said, Josh... I agree. And unless a child is different from all the rest, there will come certain times where they rebel, test boundaries, lose interest, or give in to peer and other pressures, etc... and our job, as parents, is to find a way to point them back toward the road to maturity and success, and often that comes through harnessing their interests.

We were very lucky in that our small, local schools had wonderful teachers and principals, dedicated to educating and helping the kids get ahead. There was good communication between parents and teachers, student tutors available to help the kids that needed it, and no one was allowed to fall through any cracks. I wish it were like that everywhere! There were college level courses available for those who wanted to get ahead, or were bored because they were ahead, and help was everywhere for those students struggling.

We were very lucky to have the local resources we had when the kids were growing up.

JoJo, perhaps your brother's influence will be the catalyst, and your son will improve because he wants to... because he sees a role model in your brother, something to aspire to. From what I have seen, kids are most influenced by the adults they're surrounded with... and they take their cues in life from us, the adults.

Believe it or not, Minerva has grown at least 2 inches overnight! Her scape continues to lengthen, and it shouldn't be long before she blooms! If I am successful at getting her to set seed, I'd be happy to share, JoJo! One seed pod can produce a lot of seed, and there is a potential for 4 seed pods if I am successful.

It has been raining or drizzling for the past few days, and while the rain has stopped, it's still gloomy, dark and cloudy, wet and cold out there. The wind has picked up, too. I am not looking forward to chores today!

JoJo, I've been checking out various perennials and whatnot, and there are so many with blue sage-like flowers and growth habits... what I have is Russian sage, with a shorter different type of sage planted in front of it. I can't think what yours might be, though it could be something entirely different given our varied locations.

Given the weather and other factors, we find it a bit difficult to get into the spirit of the season, so to speak. It just doesn't feel like Christmas without fresh snow on the ground. Growing up, there was always lots of snow this time of year! Not that I miss it too much... don't get me wrong. The warmer it is, the happier I am!

A bonfire sounds so nice! Especially in chilly weather! It's got to be so beautiful with mountains in the background, snow falling at higher elevations... nice!

Well... time to get moving. One more cup of coffee, and I'm off to get my work done for the day.

Have a lovely day, everyone!

    Bookmark   December 18, 2012 at 1:45PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo


Reading what you said about some associations brought a memory of different kind...I come from family with 6 children. We always had lots of fun (no money, but we were quite happy kids anyway) - our mom & dad took us camping whenever possible, fishing, hiking, skating on the pond, and similar.
We always use to sing, all of us together. I was maybe 6-7 yrs old at the time (looong time ago). It was summer evening, our windows wide open. We lived on second floor.
We were singing few songs. All of sudden there was a knock on the door - policeman came to tell us that we should stop singing...My mom asked if somebody was complaining about the noise. He said no, just stop singing.

We kids just sat there, didn't understand.
Can you imagine we could not sing our happy kids songs...

(One of the reasons I left first opportunity I had...)


    Bookmark   December 18, 2012 at 8:16PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
tapla (mid-MI z5b-6a)

Rina's story reminds me of one night when I was a teenager. We were at our cottage on the lake. It was maybe 8 or 9:00. Some summer nights, when the air was very still and the night clear, you could hear people talking in a normal voice from all the way across the lake, a distance of about 3/4 mile. That night was one of those calm nights, but there wasn't much conversation to be heard because someone was playing the harmonica. Beautifully - haunting strains. This person, whoever it was, was wonderfully talented, and was playing song after song. We figured out it was someone entertaining friends at a campfire at the waters edge across the lake. The group wasn't rowdy, or loud, because we'd have heard them, given how clearly we could hear the wonderful music. After the free concert had gone on for an hour or so, we could see flashing red lights up on the road above the beach. Moments later, we could hear the police officer telling the people that someone had complained because they couldn't sleep, that the music was too loud, and they would have to stop playing. I remember the night and the music like it was yesterday, and it's no easier to fathom the WHY of it (the complaint) today than it was way back then.

Hi, guys. Just checking in. Really warm here today (still 37* @ 22:35), but we might get some rain/snow come Thu, and possibly a white Christmas followed by a mid-week storm.

I hope you're all geared up for the holiday. I can't seem to get it into my head that Christmas is almost here. I've got all my shopping done, and menues planned, but it FEELS like Christmas is still weeks away - so strange.

This year, we host the extended family - our kids/grandkids/brothers/sisters/nieces/nephews, great neices/nephews ans a few of their boyfriends/girlfriends. That's Saturday. Christmas Eve, we'll have our kids here for our Christmas, and on Christmas we're headed to my brother's for dinner - going there on NY's Eve, too.

Take care. I hope that everyone who's feeling under the weather is better soon & feeling great by Christmas. Take care, guys. TTYL.


    Bookmark   December 18, 2012 at 10:46PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Rina - I grew up as one of four adopted kids, with extra foster kids always a part of our family. We numbered at least 6 kids at all times, sometimes 8 or more! My parents took us camping every opportunity they got! We were fortunate enough to see all the sights, from coast to coast, and everything in between, all as a result of camping trips! We went fishing often, and as I got older, my friends and I would hunt and trap, too. I've always lived way out in the country, always lived a more self-sufficient and down to earth life... and I've always had so much fun doing all those things!

I couldn't even imagine being told to stop singing, or stop playing a musical instrument! Who goes camping to sleep, or goes to a lake and finds a reason to complain about a single harmonica player? Good grief!

Neighbors never even complained when we'd have large parties with a rock band! We'd have a stage set up on the "back 40" with power running to it, a horse trough with 3 barrels of beer on ice, about 200 people, a giant bonfire, grills of food cooking, and tents set up for people to spend the weekend! Never got a complaint! Everyone would pitch in and help, throw a few dollars in to pay for food, beer, and the band... and we'd all have fun!

And if no one complained about a huge party out on a farm, why would anyone complain about a single harmonica? Or kids singing? What a messed up world we live in.

This is why I could never live in such a controlled environment. I don't need a babysitter or a parental figure telling me what I can do, and what I can't... I'm an adult. I think I can figure out for myself what is considered courteous, neighborly and decent.

If we thought our party would be too loud for the neighbors way down the road, we'd contain the noise, keep it down a bit. But the neighbors were more inclined to come down and listen to the band with us, or they were situated far enough away that it didn't bother them. We could hear other weekend parties going on elsewhere, occasionally... but we certainly had no intention of calling anyone to make them stop having fun. Who does that?

Al - I can barely find Christmas spirit this year! We don't celebrate anything here... we only celebrate because of the grandkids... it's a season of fun for them. We usually drive up and spend a few days with the family, but we only do gifts for the little kids. Adults in our family just don't have the budget to splurge anymore. Everything has gotten so expensive. We gather for dinner, watch the little kids have fun opening presents... and that's it. We stay a few days, visit, maybe do some side work, then come home. Without snow, it doesn't even feel like Christmas... and the older I get, the less I like all the commercialism and everything. I don't know... it just doesn't feel like Christmas this year for some reason. I almost feel like the Grinch! LOL!

I don't know... maybe I'm getting old and grumpy, or maybe it's because I just don't feel physically good this time of year... or maybe it's because of the weather... it just doesn't feel much like Christmas. I'll feel differently once we're up north with the kids, I'm sure!

I do hope everyone else has the spirit of the season, and enjoys time spent with family and friends! I wish everyone the very best this time of year has to offer!

Well... my chores won't do themselves, unfortunately... time to get busy! Have a good one!

    Bookmark   December 19, 2012 at 1:39PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Random simple things that bring me joy:

Watching a child walk in enjoyment while wearing there new cap with joy.

Finding the right home for the package that was mi-delivered to mine.

Seeing bright lights glitter with or with out color.

Knowing sun and day light hours will increase once again.

My children laughing they way they do knowing better when I tell them I can be flexible in the kitchen.

The quilt as it drapes the back of the couch offering more welcoming than the pineapple offering hospitality on a tray.

In fairness if the pineapple where displayed out side it would offer more hospitality than the quilt would offer welcoming if quilt where draped outside.

Hearing and seeing by words and/or by pics someone else express there own simple things in life that brings them joy.

    Bookmark   December 20, 2012 at 8:36PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
greenman28 NorCal 7b/8a

I guess I'm in the minority here...because I love the Christmas season ;-)
No, I don't have my shopping done yet, but I do know the gifts I plan to purchase
for my family members. Friends have already been presented their gifts.

I enjoy the pagan rituals - the re-enactment of sacred history - and contemplating
the ways our ancestors survived the cold in the Deepest of Time. The Winter Solstice
and the return of the Sun in three days is one of my favorite observances....
after all, there's a reason I took the moniker of 'Greenman' ;-)

This year, an early gift from my Orchid.

    Bookmark   December 21, 2012 at 2:29PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
Loveplants2 8b Virginia Beach, Virginia

Hi Josh,

I am with you!!! ;-)









Here is a link that might be useful: Landfaall Harmonica... Beautiful...

    Bookmark   December 22, 2012 at 2:15AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
jojosplants(9/ Tucson, Az.)

What's with all caps? lose your glasses? lol! I don't mind really, it helps me read when I'm too lazy to go find mine! LOL!!!
Haven't forgotten you, will write soon. been busy here. I volunteer 3 days a week and am just not used to being gone a 10 hr day! Been stay home mom for 15 yrs, so its hard doing things diff now. :-(

Caught up with Mike last night and got to talk till the phone died. LOL. which is always good for some laughs and fun!
Thanks for the text Mike! which reminded me to call.. lol.
Hugs! Mom always too!

I'm having a hard time getting into the spirit too this year, a lot of reasons. :-( But I guess we will make the best of it.

I love your list . :-) I'm a very simple person, and sometimes people here just don't understand that and complicate things only to make me unhappy.

My Birthday for example... Can't afford gifts, which I DON"T need!! and so little things like a "Happy Birthday" don't get said... :-(
a pot of coffee when I get home made for me by someone else would go farther than any gift bought could go.. But I can't seem to get that through my guys heads. :-( Brew my own. sigh....

Need to run.. taking mom shopping today. Wish me luck!! Hope its not busy out there! Still driving the huge truck! doing better and running over less curbs with the back tires though! LOL!!!


Hi to all!!!
I will get back tonight! Josh, Jodi, thanks for your ideas with Jace. will talk more later. Need to take mom for some last min. shopping.

This post was edited by jojosplants on Sat, Dec 22, 12 at 10:53

    Bookmark   December 22, 2012 at 10:38AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
greenman28 NorCal 7b/8a

p.s. another Happy Birthday for you, JoJo! :-)

Laura, merry Christmas and Happy Holidays to you.

Be back later.....


    Bookmark   December 22, 2012 at 2:55PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
Loveplants2 8b Virginia Beach, Virginia

HI Everyone!!

LOL.. Caps lock button was on!!! To late when i realized it so i decided to keep it that way.. Jojo... I did have my glasses on too! LOL!!!

Thank you Josh, Merry Christmas to you as well!!!


    Bookmark   December 22, 2012 at 10:45PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
jojosplants(9/ Tucson, Az.)

ROFL!! Time for a new prescription? Too funny Laura! Well like I said, saved me having to find mine. lol..

Josh! Thank you so much!


    Bookmark   December 23, 2012 at 1:38AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Laura. The small things in life that take care of us better than the big things OR even with my glasses on I didn't even notice your typing in caps.Maybe I was to busy looking at the neat orchid. What I notice most is it's flower looking like fabric was torn off from a late 1800's high society dress and formed to look even better as a flower.

Very nice treat Josh.

    Bookmark   December 23, 2012 at 8:01PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
tapla (mid-MI z5b-6a)

That's a great story about your son, Laura!

Happy belated, JJ. I haven't been around & wish I could have caught you on your b-day!

Had the extended family over last night. My parents are gone, and one of my sisters, but all the kids, g-kids, nieces/nephews & great nieces/nephews and some stragglers all made a nice time of it. The food was good, everyone ate too much, but we all had fun. No one was in a huff about anything, so it was like a Christmas gathering should be - like a family all wrapped up in each other. ;-)

Not much else to share right now, but I do want to wish EVERYONE a very Merry Christmas. Remember, it's not so much about opening presents as it is opening your hearts.

Take care.


    Bookmark   December 23, 2012 at 10:27PM
Sign Up to comment
More Discussions
Best glue for terracotta pots?
Yes I did. Left some of my pots outside and now they...
Fabric Pots - Decor Question
Good afternoon everyone. I'm thinking of growing a...
"tapla" root pruning question
Hi Al, I bought another Brush Cherry, and wanted your...
Transplanting between containers
I'm looking for a rule of thumb for proper transplanting,...
cakbu z9 CA
Reusing infested soil
Last year, my outdoor container-grown kale suffered...
Sponsored Products
15" Round Bathroom sink in black basalt Stone- OUVEA DARK
OTT-LITE Pacifica Collection Floor Lamp
Lamps Plus
Pair of Owl Bookends
$195.00 | Horchow
Home Decorators Indoor/Outdoor Sisal Area Rug: Home Decorators Collection Rugs
Home Depot
Palm Tree Goblets
Classic Hostess
BLux | Julia Pendant Light
$973.60 | YLighting
People viewed this after searching for:
© 2015 Houzz Inc. Houzz® The new way to design your home™