Anything You Wanna Talk About V - Prolly Mostly Off-Topic

tapla (mid-MI z5b-6a)December 15, 2012

I know I'm jumping the gun by starting a new thread when there are still a few posts remaining before the last one is filled, and feel free to keep the conversation going there, but I wanted to repost the message these threads started with back in '09 before Christmas came & went; that, because the stories are so Christmas related, and everyone seemed to enjoy them. Apologies for the redundancy to those who have already read the stories.

Feel free to comment on what I'm copy/pasting from the old thread, or take the conversation in any direction you want to go. It's winter, forums slow, and there's not a whole lot going on outdoors here, so I've been musing.
I am, like a fair number of people who take the time to ponder life, more than a little disenchanted with the commercialization of Christmas. I know - THAT was a 'duh' moment, huh? It's just that Christmas has become all about commitments to the gods of acquisition, instead of commitment to nurturing relationships with the most important in your life. It's become more about 'things', and making sure the right people get enough to keep them from thinking you're cheap. Sigh.

I'm sorry. I'm really here to tell you a story about two familial glimpses of the real Christmas spirit that made indelible impressions on my heart. They both occurred at our extended family gatherings, one about 8 years ago, the other about 3 years ago.

Gathered at our home were my three children and their families, my brother and 3 sisters and their families, and my mom. Prolly about 25 people. The grand-kids open their gifts first, and they open them one at a time so everyone can see what they are receiving and enjoy their excitement. After a couple of rounds of gift-opening, it was my oldest grandson's turn. Seven years old at the time, he was 3/4 of the way across the family room and sort of in the middle of the gathering. He had a long, fairly large package; I don't even remember what was in it, but he was standing and turned sideways to me, tearing the paper off as he held the package clenched between his knees. Suddenly he just stopped opening the gift. Still holding the wrapping paper in his hands, he squeezed it in his little hands and brought his fists to his chest in a display of excitement. Clutching the paper to his chest and slightly bent forward from the waist, you could easily see the little shudder that went through him as he turned his head toward me and said, "Grampa, my feelings are all filled up!"

I thought, "From the mouths of babes ....." and my eyes suddenly filled with tears as I realized a grandfather had been blessed with a glimpse directly into his grandson's heart. I'll never forget that moment (waxing nostalgic now, in fact) and as soon as I regained enough of my composure, I charged my daughter with the responsibility of never forgetting it either.


On the next occasion, the family gathering was at my brother's home. I had a sister who was sort of the black sheep of the family for a variety of reasons, and she normally didn't attend family gatherings. She and her husband had a special needs daughter, her stepdaughter, who has learning and emotional disorders that are noticeable, but not debilitating, and I can't help but feel in my heart that they were not patient enough with her. She was abused by a member of her father's family as a small child, and undoubtedly bears the scars of that, along with her other crosses. The family had very little income and they just managed to get by, so she was not used to things that aren't essential to daily living. She is the sweetest child, and you couldn't help but immediately want to wrap her in your arms and squeeze her tight.

Upon arriving at my brother's and realizing that my sister and family were there, we were heartsick that we hadn't come prepared with a gift for the daughter. Since we have a granddaughter slightly younger, my quick-thinking wife changed a name tag on one of many gifts that were intended for our granddaughter. A couple of others employed some similar strategy so she would have gifts to open.

As it worked out, our gift was the first she opened. It was something that most of us would consider a 'filler' gift - just 'something' the child could open ....... but not to little Skyler. The gift was nothing more than a small and inexpensive assortment of bath amenities that had been packaged for children - bubble bath and the like.

When she opened that first gift, emotions too many to count played across her face. It was like you handed her the most precious gift that anyone had ever seen. She clutched it to her chest in the same way my grandson had clutched the wrapping paper. She sniffed the fragrance coming from the package, looked at it again, and then hugged it, repeating that sequence over and over; then she offered it to everyone near for a sniff, so they could also appreciate the fragrance. She even asked her mom if she could take a bath .... now!

I looked at my wife, sitting at my side to see if she saw what I did. I was already teared up, but when I looked at her, she was crying, which moved me even more to know that I wasn't the only one that was affected by what we had just witnessed.

To behold such pure joy and excitement was, to me, another blessing I'll count among those I could never forget. As I sat there thinking about what I'd just seen, the realization that what seemed like an insignificant gift that had been destined to be just another of many given to a child who had been blessed with a mother and father able to provide her with every advantage, had somehow been transformed into something very, very special - something that brought Christmas to a precious child ...... isn't that a Christmas miracle?


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Loveplants2 8b Virginia Beach, Virginia

Great Stories AL,

Very touching.. Im sure these memories will follow you through every CHristmas!!! Kids are wonderful!!! They can show their true emotions and make us feel so warm...

What a perfect time to share these stories of love and joy from these kids that are happy to receive any gift that makes them that happy.

When i see those type of emotions that is when i know that the Christmas Spirit has hit me.

Thank You for shating your stories from your family and letting us see the true meaning of JOY in children.

We need a little lift right now and i think these stories might just help us all out.

I also believe Christmas is about giving... i myself, love to help others.. The other day at work, we were stranded for the night at the airport and people were camped out everywhere. Our company made arrangements for our crew to catch the hotel van at the baggage claim area. Myself and at least ten other people passed a gentleman sitting at a hotel marker in a wheelchair waiting to be picked up. He only had one arm, no legs and was busy reading something on his cell.. we all passed and i felt horrible. Noone stopped.. After ten feet.. I stopped, let my crew know i would be back and i went up to him and asked him if there was anything i could do for him. He looked up into my eyes, smiled.. and said "thank you for stopping, but my friend is picking up the car in the garage and she will be here soon, But thank you kindly..." I said alright and that i hoped he had a nice night. Noone else stopped to see if he needed help as we waited for the van. This gentleman was a businessman who had special needs and noone would stop. My eyes grew with tears knowing in my heart that "I" did the right thing... hoping that if one of my kids, friends or loved ones was in that particular situation, someone would offer help. My heart grew alot that night and i hold onto those pleasant thoughts as i enter this Holiday season.

Christmas miracles are happening all around, sometimes it is hard to see.. but if you look close, you can see them., If not.. make one happen for a special child..

God Bless those families up north.. my thoughts and prayers are with you!!!

Take Care,


    Bookmark   December 16, 2012 at 1:57AM
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chilliwin(EU DK 7)

Thank you Sir A1 for giving me an opportunity to read this nice story in the right time.

Children are so innocent and pure not yet corrupted by our corrupted world their emotion are so real and so beautiful. I can imagine how you would feel those moments.

This forum is very vast, it is very much impossible to read all the old nice stories/article/advice/opinion so re-posting the old one is really valuable to everyone who is new member here.

Thank you very much again for your remarkable contribution in this forum.


    Bookmark   December 16, 2012 at 8:05AM
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Christmas dates back over 4000 years. Many of our Christmas traditions were celebrated centuries before the Christ child was born.

The 12 days of Christmas, the bright fires, the yule log, the giving of gifts, carnivals(parades) with floats, carolers who sing while going from house to house.

    Bookmark   December 16, 2012 at 1:20PM
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Loveplants2 8b Virginia Beach, Virginia

Hello Everyone!!!

Thanks Al... I am very proud of my son!!! Thanks for the kind remark!!! makes me feel like i did something right...
It amazes me that they actually listen all of these years, then sometimes we get a glimpse of how they apply what we have taught them.. it meant more to me than any gift...

truly blessed... :-)

Wes.. Thank you as well..!! Sometimes we do see what is importsnt even when we look through all of the caps. Thanks for saying that!! : ) You are a good man!!

Merry Christms to you all!!!


    Bookmark   December 23, 2012 at 11:40PM
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jojosplants(9/ Tucson, Az.)

Good Morning!

Merry Christmas!!!

Meant to comment in other thread about your son. But It seems every time I sit down someone needs something and I can't have 2 min. to my self. Dogs, hubby, child , chicken.. you name it! LOL!
So I get in a hurry and hit send sooner than planned! :-( Like now! Goober,(cat) yelling at me, son bugging me about what is on tv! lol..
I have a lap top in the back room, but the print is so small! lol...

That is wonderful what your son did , and i'm sure makes you proud! I can only hope my son is that way some day! I try hard to teach all the little things that will some day make him a gentleman, but he's 15 now, and i'm not sure how much sinks in ! lol.. So I hope to someday to see it sunk in. ;-)

Recently I was at the store, and there was a little old man with 2 carts of groceries! I looked around to see if he had help with him and there was none. So I offered, and took one of his carts out to his car and helped him load the car. It was a lot!!! I hope he had help when he got home! ;-)

Al~ Thank you for the belated wishes! I know your a busy person,I understand. :-) It's all I can do to cook one turkey meal for 3, I don't know how you do it for the get togethers you have!
I've been trying to do some Christmas baking and it's not going well. lol! Had some turn out so bad, I left them on the table and none of the dogs stole them last night! ROFL!! Oh well. I make an awesome banana bread though. ;-)
Well, I need to run for now.
We go to my moms tonight. It's been a hard year, and i'm trying to get in the mood/swing of things but just not having much luck. :-(

Tomorrow will be here, and no travel out of town to the in laws like we have done for 15 yrs! It seems weird knowing we wont go anywhere after Christmas Morning.
So for the first time ever, since me and DH have been together, I will cook Christmas Dinner! Turkey is thawing! ;-)

We will get together with the in laws next weekend and they are coming to Tucson, our truck is not up to a trip out of town, and neither is DH.


    Bookmark   December 24, 2012 at 10:59AM
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greenman28 NorCal 7b/8a

A merry Christmas Eve to all my friends!

Tonight, we'll order Chinese take-out according to Family Green tradition. I finished my shopping
this morning, and am about to add ornaments to the tree :-)

As the sun wrestled with cloud as it rose, I slipped the Orchid onto the back deck for a quick pic.

    Bookmark   December 24, 2012 at 4:38PM
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The bigger dinner parties from the home front kitchen need a bit of organized planning starting at the markets ending in the kitchen Jo Jo. Start to finish with cheese and crackers or scallops wrapped in bacon and ending with the "low fat chocolate dessert " or the after dinner chats. It's all in the flow and timing have fun with it and enjoy what your doing.

Know what else has artistic flow ? A good looking bonsai tree and both need a solid plan for the person on the canvas. Cooking it and serving it out I plan it out backwards. Hard is easy and easy is the hardest, Or It's not the turkey that's the hardest it's all the fixings that go with it in. If I cant chop an onion I'm sunk if I even try to stuff the bird.

What makes hard become easy for me is 15 or so years of cooking in the professional kitchens where one tends to get a bit of onion chopping under there belt.

I even got a small GW X mas gift VIA Josh
Good to see it again and a nice treat I wont have to go back to the part 4 thread to see that very neat looking orchid Josh.

    Bookmark   December 26, 2012 at 12:08AM
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Loveplants2 8b Virginia Beach, Virginia

Hello Everyone!!!

Josh.. Simpy beautiful!! Thank you for this gorgeous picture.. I just love the colors and the contours of the whole bloom. Quite lovely!!

Wes.. Scallops wrapped in bacon.. YUM!!! I love to cook too! Seems like the more i do, the more request i get and then everyone runs when it is time to clean up.. :-)

Jojo.. I bet your son is learning these important lessons all of the time. Sometimes it isnt what is said, but is what we do... I remember when my son was really young, i always told him to hold the door for a lady. Regardless of where we were.. store.. etc It really made him feel good when he would receive the thanks from the ladies and then it made him want to do it even more.

When im working and i see kids that say "thank you" i always make it a point to say what wonderful manners you have.. They always look at their parents and smile. Looking for the positive response from the parents that have told them these things so many times. That makes them feel good...It is good to encourage this good behavior.

Your son is a great young man... This is just a hard age for these guys right now.. He will get it!! You will get that feeling when you least expect it and think the same thing.. "He got it!!!" ;-)

Happy New Year to you all...

I hope everyone had a wonderful Christmas and or special holiday!!!

Take care,


    Bookmark   December 28, 2012 at 12:03AM
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LOL Laura: Our full belly family members sound almost as though they're related.
Sometimes they try help make the kitchen mess with me but when it's hot it's hot so I tell them that I'll be patent as long as they can keep up to my pace.

The kitchen is a great place to bond though. On any given day I step aside and watch them do they're thing. reminiscing now I'd rather loose six dozen eggs knowing. I'll still have to clean the stove, floor and pan just to watch and finally see that right to them but still perfect to me, one over easy egg all day long.

Jojo: Once a Jar Head always a Jar Head A phrase we think and sometimes say once somebody says there where a Marine.
Do we hear the Jar Head say the same people who break you down are the same people who build you up after we say Jar Head to them ?
Why, because pride is for the one who holds it! Just like the Jar Head knows, nobody can take your pride nor your sons.

    Bookmark   December 29, 2012 at 6:56PM
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Hi! Trying to get used to my new kindle! My computer monitor fried just before Christmas. I hope this is readable!

I hope everyone had a great Christmas!

Just wanted everyone to know that I haven't fallen off the grid... just having computer issues.

Mike - the bulb will be opening its blooms shortly! I turned down the heat before we left for our trip north to slow growth. It's pushing up two stems.

I should have a laptop or repaired monitor soon. I will type more then.

Happy New Year Everyone!

    Bookmark   December 30, 2012 at 12:56PM
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greenman28 NorCal 7b/8a


Thanks, Wes and Laura for the kind words as usual! ;-)
Scallops wrapped in bacon....yeah, that's my kind of appetizer!

Jodi, I hope you're squared away with a new monitor soon. Can't wait to see the bloom.

Happy New Years, folks! :-D


    Bookmark   December 30, 2012 at 1:06PM
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tapla (mid-MI z5b-6a)

Hi guys! Josh - that's a really goods shot of a really beautiful orchid. Thanks for brightening up the landscape.

Who's going out for NYE? We're headed to my brother's for a charades party - first time out for NYs in a number of years. I sure wish some of you guys could be there - it would be a really good time. We all bring something to pass, and laugh our butts off all night long. It's usually something of a cleansing experience. ..... know what I mean - when you get together with good folks & laugh & laugh? I know you do!

Man - it's hard to make resolutions you can hope to keep when you live with 60 year old habits. It often seems like the new year is just an opportunity to resume where the old left off. If you break a resolution, you're a weakling, so when you make one, given the 60 year thing, you're a fool. Still, unlike the whirlwind last weekend was, this weekend has been relaxing, so I'll have some quiet time to think about regrets, and I will. I think I'm going to resolve do my best to always rise above the little stuff, and thank God every day for another chance to get it right.

For you guys, I'll hope that as the year moves along, every day's best is the next day's worst. Happy New Year to all my GW friends.


    Bookmark   December 30, 2012 at 1:59PM
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Happy New Years to you too Al.
Resolutions Hmmmm
My resolution is to reflect on my past regrets so I dont do the same things over and over again in 2014. A fool I can handle at least it's not insane

If not that then I can keep my sense of humor. A little early I may be but getting off to a good start right out of the gate is what your reading next.

A cop is staking out a bar for drunk drivers. At closing time, he sees a guy stumble out of the bar, trip on the curb, and stumble for his keys for five minutes. When he finally gets in, it takes him another five minutes to get the key in the ignition.

Meanwhile, everybody else leaves the bar and drives off. When he finally pulls away, the cop is waiting for him, pulls him over, and gives him a breathalyzer test. The test shows he has a blood alcohol level of 0.0. The cop says, "how is this possible?"

The guy says, "tonight, I'm the designated decoy."

    Bookmark   December 30, 2012 at 4:03PM
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LOL! Hilarious joke!

We stay home and off the roads for all holidays... just to be safe. Regrets... we don't dwell on the past... it can't be changed. We look to the future instead... and live today as though it's all there is. We resolve to do better at quitting smoking... even though we're almost there already. One day at a time.

Oh! Here's one... chicken and an egg laying in bed in post coital afterglow smoking cigarettes. The chicken says "welll we know the answer to that question now!"

I like the kindle fire but it has a very small and touchy keyboard! I'm sure the old man can find a laptop for temporary use... or fix my old monitor soon.

Here's to a wonderful and safe New Year's Eve to everyone! And special thanks to everyone who has helped me over the years or been generous in various ways... you are all very awesome individuals and I can't thank you enough. The world is a better place because you are all in it. You've each touched my life in different ways and made me want to be a better person. You are an amazing group of very special friends that occupy a special place in my heart.

So here's to an amazing and prosperous 2013... may karma touch you all gently and with positive vibrations and good health!

Happy Growing!

    Bookmark   December 30, 2012 at 5:42PM
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Loveplants2 8b Virginia Beach, Virginia

Hello Everyone!!!

Al.. Have a wonderful time at your brothers home!! Sounds like so much fun. We all need to laugh and i especially love to belt out a good one whenever i get the chance!! Enjoy!! Happy New Year, thanks for all of your help this year!!!

Jodi .. New Kindle? What a wonderful gift!! I have one and i love mine.... I 'm sure you will love yours!!! ;-) When i am at home, i do like the big monitor.. easier to see!! LOL. Even with my glasses on!!! :)

I am like you.. We stay home on New Year's Eve and listen to the others outside light off fireworks. My son is out of town and we are sitting his dog.. he doesn't like the sound of lightning or fireworks, so im sure i will be looking for him under the beds everywhere all night!!! Poor guy!!!

I personally don't like to be on the roads on this night. To many people drinking and to many "check points around my city" I don't worry, but i don't like to be stopped every few blocks either.. so we stay home!!!

ill be looking at the stars at midnight.. like to be outside as the year turns... ;-)

Hi Josh!!! Happy New Year to you and yours too!

Wes.. Good One.. I think i am the decoy!!! LOL... My son calls me when he and his friends are ready.. i have always done this for them.. They could call a cab, but i always say to call.. unless it's after 2. Then, call a cab!!! LOL...

Mike... On the thread from Xuan, you had asked about pics of my new grandson.. here are a few pics for you and others... I added a pic of some chocolate covered apples that i was making a few days ago. Tasty!!! LOL.. i only can eat a few slices, but they sure are good!

The orchid and the frog jumped into my cart at the nursery the other day.. LOL.. I had to bring them home!!!

Here is my little sweeetie!!!

Happy New Year to you all!!

Oh... as far as resolutions.. I will try and help and be more patient with people. I think that i am, but sometimes i am tested more so at work.. this is the time i need to take a look at others and realize that everyone has a story and they have their deep feelings that are locked inside as they are in my care. We sometimes only see people as numbers, and i try to see them as individuals with feelings too!

Happy New Year to Everyone!!!


Good Night All...


    Bookmark   December 30, 2012 at 11:11PM
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Laura....Those are the cutest pictures of your grandson, let alone beautiful pictures of your flowers and frog!
Don't you just love the smell of that orchid!
I think I do have one just like it from last year that I saved from the orchid show.
It was a throw away for a buck!
I will take a picture for you and tell me what you think.

Jodik..Hello and you got a new Kindle!!!? Wow, I don't even own one of those. Lucky you!
By the way, how's the plants these days? I also miss you at the other forums.
Been wondering if you were ok or just busy!
How's the bulb these dasy?
I did send you an e-mail days ago and I hope you got that.
Much love from us here.
I hope you are not in as much pain as you have been these days.

Josh! What a LOVELY orchid! So unique and so special. I knew you could grow it well.. It just goes to show there is hope for anyone considering orchids without high humidity. So nice pal!

Jojo, can you beleive that it's over? The Hoiliday's that is? Sheesh, where does time go?
I saw your new additions, plants that is. I love them all.
We hope you are safe sound and hoping Mike keeps getting better!

Oops gotta go.

Hello everyone else. Happy New Year and I hope everyone enjoys tonight!


    Bookmark   December 31, 2012 at 1:59PM
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jojosplants(9/ Tucson, Az.)

Hello All! And Happy New Year!! Be safe if your out tonight!

Staying in here. And it will be a miracle if I'm still up to ring in the new year. lol.

No resolutions here. Just hope to deal with what each day brings the best I can.

Josh ,
The orchid is so beautiful!!

Beautiful Baby!! So sweet!! Nice plant too! And the frog so cute! I love frogs! Cant help it if you garden , right? ;-)


    Bookmark   December 31, 2012 at 2:01PM
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After sifting and sorting out a number of plants I thought only one can be first to flower in 2013... eliminating the ones that already had full flowering prior to Dec 31 bought me to the budding plants. Eliminating even more first flower of 2013 candidates as the over all plant already has flowerings and still have buds. Then it's just those with buds that have yet to fully open Well the race is still on for two of them so far it looks like.......

    Bookmark   December 31, 2012 at 8:55PM
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greenman28 NorCal 7b/8a

Al, thanks sir, that means a lot to me! :-)
I sent my grandpa that pic of the Orchid, and he said great shot of a great plant...
and next time use a black background! He's right, though, hahaha.

Well, Happy New Years to each and all! Al, Mike, Laura, JoJo, Jodi, Wes, Rina, Xuan, and Caelian
joining us all the way from Denmark! I hope you are surrounded by good friends and cheers.
I've decided to stay in tonight....and crack a bottle of Moscato to sip and enjoy.

Hehehe, Mike, you make a guy think he can grow just about anything! Thanks for another year of friendship.

Laura, beautiful pics! What sort of dessert treat are those?!

Wes, great little bloomer :-)

I suppose I should include a pic; so I'll add a shot of some bonsai sunning on the back deck.

    Bookmark   December 31, 2012 at 10:20PM
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Hey guys! I'm in here on and off. I'm jumping in and crashing the OT thread :P

Going through that special time of year when I'm looking online, getting myself into trouble with the image search for plants, and planning the next season. Just thought I would say hi!

    Bookmark   January 2, 2013 at 12:58AM
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Hey, Everyone! I'm temporarily on a "loaner" laptop, until the old guy can repair my monitor. I'm so happy that we have "extra" technology on hand for occasions like this. This is not the version of Windows I'm used to, not the email client I'm familiar with, and half the letters are worn off the keyboard... but I'm just happy to be able to communicate with my dear friends!

As everyone knows, we usually go north to visit family over the holidays. We spend about a week with our son's family which is, apparently, just about the gestation time needed for common childhood germs and viruses to take hold... and we brought home a doozie of a chest cold/flu! We've both been terribly sick since we arrived home, and I haven't felt well enough to do much reading or typing.

But today, I'm starting to feel a little better. I can see I have a lot to catch up with!

The Kindle was a total surprise... I can't believe the old guy stashed a dollar here, another there, and managed to hoard enough to gift me with it... I know it helps to know people within the industry, and given that we do know people in the industry, I know he got a heck of a great deal on it! Even so, it was quite unexpected, and it will take me a while to learn its many uses! I'm thrilled with it! It opens a lot of doors to reading, and I love to read! We so seldom gift each other that this was a total shocker!

Marvelous photographs, everyone...

Josh, I can't get over how lovely that Catt is. The colors and shape are stunning! Nice bonsai, too!

Laura, what a little angel... Grandma's Best Friend, indeed! And what a nifty frog! You're so lucky to have the humidity that Oncids like... that's a pretty one!

Whenever I see toad or frog statuary at garden centers, I think of Al and his interesting amphibian collection!

Mike, believe it or not "Minerva" is only just now beginning to unfurl its buds... I've got photos taken to document its progress, but I have to wait for my computer to be repaired to upload them. It's my very favorite plant to grow, and I thoroughly enjoy the anticipation involved! This bulb is very special, and I'm almost glad she's taking her sweet time to bloom... I get to enjoy it for that much longer!

Hey, JoJo... got you planted firmly in my thoughts, pushing positive vibes westward... one day at a time, my sister, take it one day at a time.

Mrlike2u, is that a cacti? I bet it looks awesome loaded with blooms!

I shall endeavor to catch up on my forum reading within the next couple of days... now that I feel a little more human, that is.

In the meantime, here's to a very positive beginning to a new year!

    Bookmark   January 2, 2013 at 6:23PM
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greenman28 NorCal 7b/8a

Hi, Julianna, I hope you find many new plants this year :-)

Jodi, I'm glad you're getting over the crud, and glad you've got some loaner tech to check in!
The days are noticeably longer now, and the Sun a touch stronger, too. It'll be Daffodil season
before we know it. Congrats on the Kindle, as well. That's a great gift :-)

My brother got me a proper grinder for my peppers....


    Bookmark   January 2, 2013 at 7:22PM
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Jodik..WELOCOME BACK..You mean to tell me that Larry only spent 2 dollars for that Kindle? lol
I had a drean someone bought me a note pad last night, but when I woke up, I forgot from who. I hope it means something.
Everyone here is about me is sick, except for me. Goodness, it's a terrible cold, and that is with everyone who got the flu shot!
Oh boy, I can't wait to see Manirva in all her slendid glory.
You know? It's a good thing that it's not the type of plant that opens while your gone and dies before you get
Hoping you get better and welcome back. You were missed here and you know where else:-)

Juliana..Very nice to meet you. Please come around more often and join us plant nuts:-0)

Josh, but it's true and not over exagggerrrattted... I don't have word check
Truly, you plant always seem to show how thankful they are for what you do for them. They are in good hands.
I never realized you had that many Bonsai, plant in fact.Ha

Wes, that plant is beautiful and your hard work does not go unoticed by me. Great job with a plant I would probably have killed. Loving the artic air yet?

Jojo..Same to you! I hope this year rewards you with much more joy than the last. You are loved by many here and on this forum. So good to see you up and running.
Hoping Mike is doing well these days!

    Bookmark   January 2, 2013 at 7:31PM
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greenman28 NorCal 7b/8a

Thanks, Mike!
You know what, that's only a few of my 'deck bonsai,' as I call them.
The other bonsai trees are on the north-east sheltered side of the house in a fenced area -
I have a bunch of Osage trees, two Buckeye trees, five Maples trees (including your cutting),
a Weeping Willow, an Ailanthus, a Norway Spruce 'Little Gem,' eleven Calocedrus seedlings,
a Fig, and an awesome Pygmy Cypress from our friend Al :-)

Since I have Mike and Al here, let me show a pic of a Lemon. This is a yellowing older leaf,
which I've attributed to natural senescence as well as lean fertilization (Lemons are hungry!).
I just want to make sure that the brown edges aren't indicating fertilizer burn.


    Bookmark   January 2, 2013 at 9:36PM
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My new years resolution: Let no GW posted plant pic go un named.

Prior pic now that's it's 2013 is
Trichodiadema densum

Mike:They're as easy as any C.Ovata if to Vs any of the trichods the flowering of a trichod needs a bit more on the be brave 1)leaving it outdoors longer 2) stronger sun in summer 3) Less worry about it looking very dead in summers hotter full sun 4)How does Mr G say.... Water water water there after.

Jodi Close but it's not a cacti it's a Messeb. technically it's a succulents The one in this pic isn't mine but do want to show you what more fuller flowering looks like... or did look like at our local show/meting late Nov.

    Bookmark   January 2, 2013 at 10:44PM
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Part two:
Josh :It's good to see your future bonsais they are really nice in pic form too certainly up and coming. I tend to follow your succulents as bonsai growing and am very much looking forward to some really nice trees from you in staging in the future.

Laura:One cute baby, pretty smile behind that Kooo. Those desserts aren't fat free by chance are they ? I Think Al might be looking at that frog. Nearly certain Mike M is thinking about that orchid turning into an I-Pad but I would be looking at the plant behind the frog .... It's a ??????

    Bookmark   January 2, 2013 at 11:25PM
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greenman28 NorCal 7b/8a

I prefer yours, Wes, with its great trunk and compact canopy.


    Bookmark   January 2, 2013 at 11:25PM
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Loveplants2 8b Virginia Beach, Virginia

Hello Everyone!!!

Hi Mike!!!

I do love the fragrance of my new Orchid. Sometimes the fragrance is so potent and at other times, i can barely smell strange. When i found that Orchid at my local nursery, the frog just jumped into my cart and when i saw that flower behind her ear.. I thought of Plumies!! LOL.. I had to have this cutie!!! Thank you for the kind comments of my little Grandson, he brought so much joy into our home.. we love him so much!!! ;-)

Jojo.. Happy New year to you too! I thought we were going to stay in that night, but some friends called to go out early and eat some Sushi.. How could i pass on Sushi? YUM!!! We were home around 8. LOL.. I can remember back in the day when i was gettng ready to go out at 8!!!

I also love those cute frogs.. I think anyone that loves to garden is atttached to them as well... I fell for this one so fast!! She has such a cute personality!!! I love the Parasol too!

Hi Julianna.. Nice to see you!! Happy New Year!!!

Hi Jodi.. I know you will really enjoy your new Kindle. So many things you can do with them. The first thing that i just loved was to enlarge the font and change the backlighting. When im working, i can use the black background and have the letters appear in the white setting. Then to discover the different abilities to use the web.. apps, books, games.. i was in heaven. SO... Enjoy!!! You deserve this wonderful gift. This is such a great surprise from your hubby.. I love special surprises when least espected.. He really did a great job !!

Im so sorry to hear you all brought home an unexpected little bug... My DH seemes to think he may be getting the Flu as well.. Hmmmmm, i will have to be careful since im heading back to work soon. Just my luck....

Thank you for the king comments on the pics. My little Grandson was the center of attention this year. We loved having him visit and seeing him change day by day!! He is actually starting to laugh instead of just grinning, that makes me melt to hear little laughter...The little shirt means so much to me. You may remember that i lost my little Dachshund last month. My daughter bought this shirt for us for the holidays.. i miss my little Pepper. He would be the first to open his gift at the tree. We would all gather around and then say... "go find your present Pep" He would gently sniff and findly find his little wrapped gift of bones and would put on such a funny display when he would work on that present to open it ever so gently and then rip into it as sonn as he knew what is was. I only wish that i had one more year with him... but, he is pain free. So i know he is happy!!!

I think Al has us all beat when it comes to his collection of frogs. We all love our frogs, but you are right!!! He is the man with the frogs!!! What a great collection and i also love the cute little faces on them all!!!

Happy New Year AL!!! i hope you had a good time with your family!!! Im sure you all had your share of laughter at your party!!! Laughing is good for the soul!!!!

Hi Josh!!

Love your new Grinder for your Peppers!! Those Cuisinart grinders and their other products are the best!! Have fun making all of your favorites!!!

Love your collection of Bonsai! They all look so healthy. I'm starting to learn about this beautiful art and im getting excited about tending to these new babies as if they are my new kids!!! Like i need another hobby besides my Plumeria!!! LOL.. Yep.. I guess i do!! I start at my local club tomorrow night and im really excited about attending this group meeting and learning as much as i can!! You have a great set up on your deck with all of your plants and trees!!

Happy New Year to you!! I also like your tradition on waiting until Christmas Eve to decoorate your tree. I think that is a great way to bring in the spirit of the season.... (the true way..) Oh.. i almost forgot!! Those pics of the apples are my Chocolate Caramel Apples. YUM!! They are pretty tasty!! They go fast around my house. As soon as i wrap them in cellophane and ribbon,, they seem to disappear.. Hmm? must be those kids coming in and out of the house.. LOL!!!

Wes... I agree with Josh. I like your tree better than the blooming pic. Your tree has great personality and i also love the trunk. Has much more than the other with only blooms. Yours is the show stopper!!!

Is it similar to the common "Ice Plant?"

Thanks for the kind comments on the little one!! He is my sweetie!!! :-) Love to kiss those cheeks!!!

FAT FREE? OF COURSE!!! LOLOL That is why i think we should eat an apple once a day regardless if it is dipped in Caramel and then in Chocolate.. LOL.. I usually add Toffee to the outer area, but i decided not to this year.

Maybe next year!!!

Maybe i should hide the frog then? :-)

The Orchid too? LMAO!!!
The plant behind the frog was the centerpiece for Christmas on my table. It had lots of greens and Carnations and was just beautiful. I had the candle burning for the last few nights and i love fresh flowers for my centerpieces for Christmas. Good Eye Wes!!

Take care Everyone!!!

Happy New Year to you All!!


    Bookmark   January 3, 2013 at 12:54AM
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"Is it similar to the common "Ice Plant?""

That was my initial thought, too, Laura, given the look of the flowers. And I agree with Josh, as well... I prefer the tree form over the other. The flowers are nice, but I think it's the plant form that sets it apart. I much prefer the little bonsai!

Laura, I'm trying to get used to the sensitive touch screen on the Kindle, but other than that I love it! I've already read a book of short stories by one of my favorite authors... the old guy was nice enough to set me up with access to libraries, and downloaded a few things he thought I might enjoy! He also hooked me up with a quick link to GW, knowing how much I like to read and interact with my gardening friends! It'll take me a little while to discover all the nifty features, but he truly does know what makes the perfect and most economical gift for someone like me! :-) I'm sure to get a lot of use out of it!

Now that we're home and have bumped the heat back to normal, the very large "Minerva" bulb is more quickly coming into her own! As of this morning, she's holding her larger buds aloft and fully separated, indicating her approaching opening! She's gained some rosy coloring to the buds, and it shouldn't be long before her large trumpet like flowers fully open! I'm so excited!

This has been a most wonderful season in that I received two gifts that I had not expected, though I had wanted... and I'm so thankful!

Mike, I was so hoping the bulb would await our return before blooming... I didn't want to miss the opportunity to hand pollinate and set possible seed to share with you and others who may like to try growing some! I had visions of her blooming and fading with no one to see or capture her beauty, and a missed opportunity to get seed! But true to her nature, she accepted the cooler temperature and slowed growth, much to my happiness! Right now, she's basking in the morning sun streaming in the east window... once her blooms unfurl, I'll move her out of direct sunlight to lengthen the time her flowers last. I'll hold off on pollinating until the first bloom just starts to fade the tiniest bit. She'll be very receptive at that point, and we can enjoy her for a little longer! Plus, she has 2 scapes of blooms to open, making for a nice extended bloom period!

I can't access my normal email inbox at the moment, but I can try to send you an email from this laptop, Mike. I should just call you! It's been a while since we spoke!

As the days pass I feel a little bit more human. This is the worst I've been sick in a long time! I get mild colds and bouts of flu-like symptoms frequently, but I'm never certain if it's from lupus, or if I'm truly sick. I would attribute my fairly decent health to diet, all things considered... and I refuse to get a flu shot. There are too many unknowns for me... and I don't know how my compromised immune system would deal with it all. We live fairly isolated and we eat well, so I guess it's worth the occasional risk of picking up a germ or two in exchange for seeing the grandkids! I wouldn't miss visiting for the world!

Laura, I know exactly what you mean about pets and presents... when Minnie was with us, she somehow knew exactly which little present under the tree was hers, among the pile of presents wrapped for the kids, and she'd retrieve it and work the wrapping paper off. She'd spend the rest of the day proudly hauling around her new toy or bone, making certain everyone knew she got a new plaything! It was quite comical! I still miss her... but like you, I know she's in a much better place.

This is why the H. "Minerva" bulb is so special to me... and why I'm so thrilled to have this one about to open for the first time! It holds special memories, and I always associate it with my beloved bulldog, the best dog I ever had. To receive it as a gift was so touching I found myself momentarily at a loss for words! Mike, you and Mom have brought untold joy to my heart... and I want to share that joy through pictures... now, if I can only get the old guy to help me take a few phone photos of it today, and in the days to come, my life will be complete!

Hmm... you know... we do have an older digital camera that's got a broken battery case door... I could try using that. It came in as a repair job, but the person bought a new one instead, so... it's just one more collected item kept for parts. I wonder if there's a way to get the pictures off the card and onto this laptop? Food for thought. It's funny how fast technology advances, and how disposable so much of it is. It's cheaper to buy a new camera than to repair an older one.

Josh, my Chalice Vine sheds older leaves, and it makes me wonder if it's because of something specific I'm doing? Or if it's just nature in action, shedding leaves that have done their duty? The lower leaves yellow, then fall occasionally, but the rest of the plant seems fine... if not a little ungainly from lack of pruning! My guess would be... natural shedding of older leaves?

Ah, orchids... the one elusive plant when it comes to growing them all to perfection! Well, some of you have mastered orchid culture! As a result of this cold, we've had to add some humidity to our environment... and in so doing, I can feel the huge difference! We've got an electric fry pan slowly simmering water and letting steam into the air for ease of breathing, coughing, and whatnot... and while it's not a long term solution, it's making a decided difference in being sick! It's much like having a vaporizer running. I'm sure the plants are enjoying the small respite from desert-like conditions!

The IPad... we're firm believers in allowing technology the time, from initial market introduction to updates, upgrades and patches, to pass before delving into a product and spending money on it... especially since we don't have money to spend! Normally, the first build and release of a product is not without its needed fixes, and it's not unusual for technology to be rushed to market before the bugs are worked out. I'm sure this is why the old guy waited and researched before dropping a dime on the Kindle Fire... and why he's held off replacing his own laptop with an updated model.

He wants the most for his money, and something that can carry him a while in the fast moving world of technology. It must be open for upgrades and have the capacity and tools to move along with technological progress. Research carefully, Mike, if you're thinking of an IPad... I'm not even sure how much they run, or what the best deal is... we usually confer with a few friends within the industry first, and we always order online or from someone we know that's a dealer. When you're ready, we can ask the old guy for his opinion. I'm sure he can steer you in the right direction so you get the most bang for your buck!

I don't expect to see an actual IPad for some time yet... though I think the Kindle is probably the closest thing in a smaller package.

Every time we're in a garden center, I can't help but scope out the frog statuary, thinking of Al! He does have the nicest, most unique collection I've ever seen! I, myself, have only two garden statues... one of which I won't take outside to be beaten by the elements... one is the obligatory St. Francis statue, and the one I hide indoors is a bulldog in gargoyle form! I've been hauling it around for years, but can't bring myself to leave it outside! It was a gift from the old guy many years ago. It's survived a fire, several moves, and it awaits the day I have my very own garden or glasshouse to display it in.

I must get to my chores... it's been nice to type on a keyboard I can see, and feel well enough to spend more than a moment or two sitting in front of it! I hope everyone has a nice day!

    Bookmark   January 4, 2013 at 12:00PM
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"Is it similar to the common "Ice Plant?""

It's a very good response from both of you, to make a relation by wording. It's kind of like saying a C-140 is a plane and a DC-10 is also a plane and so on to a Pipper plane or a military fighter jet are all related because they're all air craft. Trichods are a species of Mesebs that's more limited to where it grows naturally. Indeed some more diverse Ice Plants are Mesebs as well but Ice Plants also have several sub species and are much more diverse for areas of natural growing. In a manner of speaking a trichod is the equivalent of the C-140 because a C-140 plane has limited fields it needs to land.
Anyways thanks for the trichod. compliments from all of you.

They must be very popular every time I find a place that should have them they're all sold out to all you frog owner fans. Until then I'm still a molded garden frog wisher and until my garden frog wishes comes true I'll just have to display my molded garden bears.

Laura: It's good to have hobbies I think the new ones are the best. There is a lot to learn, even more or just to say I hope you enjoyed your Bonsai Club experience.

WOW Jodi A flash back to childhood. Pets at Christmas where dogs thump floors with there tails when being tossed a wrapped bone and a cat lays in the cardboard box as to say none of it ever happened while obliviously overlooking the Santa given kitty bed.

    Bookmark   January 5, 2013 at 12:32AM
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The Ficus Wrangler

Happy New Year and Bona Fortuna to you all

I've really enjoyed reading all your greetings and stories from the holidays, and I hope that in the coming year I can spend more time on the GW forums, and get to know you all better. It would be nice to have plant people to chat with, and this seems to be a place where people actually do chat among themselves.

Is that a resolution? Been there, done that, don't do it anymore. Instead, I try every day, in my daily meditation, to focus on overcoming the obstacles to self growth - as best I can identify them from where I stand at the time - for that day only. (of course there are so many I can only choose 1 or 2 at a time.) No regrets for didn't-happens or outright mistakes, just moving on each day.

And then there are frogs. Never imagined I'd find a ring of frog collectors. My husband is the big frog collector in our house, frogs and owls. We like to yard-sale on Saturdays, and he's always on the look out. But then he is the Frog King.

We met in 1990, and he had already acquired that title by 1995, when we moved into our present home,(for reasons that I will allow your own imaginations to conjure,) so it was no surprise when we came home one night shortly after moving in, to find the entire front of the house covered by hundreds of tiny frogs. (We live in St. Pete Fla, and there are several species of little tree frogs, and we also live across the street from a retention pond which is dry except when there's a lot of rain, but there's enough moisture to host lots of frogs.) (Or there was, but that's another story.)

Anyway, one day we went to visit my dad, who had a small pond in his back yard garden. We were standing there, listening to the waterfall, musing on life, like people tend to do around their backyard ponds, and Dad was worrying about his frog population, wondering where they all were, if something was wrong with them, etc. I said "Don't worry, the Frog King will be here soon, then you'll see." Sure enough, my husband soon joined us, and suddenly, there were frogs! There were frogs climbing out of the water. There were frogs crawling out from behind the rocks. There were frogs croaking. There were frogs copulating. It was amazing! But I didn't let on to my dad that I was surprised, I just said, "See, I told you not to worry." I don't think he ever looked at his son-in-law quite the same after that.

So it's a beautiful afternoon here in Fla, milky sky, mid-70's, I'm going to get the Christmas Deco boxes from the shed and pack away the Santas, Snowmen, miniature towns, and tinsel for another year. And maybe run down to HD to get me a new hand saw.


    Bookmark   January 5, 2013 at 2:10PM
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Loveplants2 8b Virginia Beach, Virginia

Hi Marlie,

Happy New Year to you as well..

What a great story about the frogs!!!

I bet that was one experience only to happen once in a lifetime.. so glad you could share it with your hubby and father.

How very special that must have been...

Thank you for sharing!!!

Take care,


    Bookmark   January 6, 2013 at 12:32AM
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greenman28 NorCal 7b/8a

Hello, hello!

I sure hope that Al is doing alright...haven't heard a peep from him here lately,
although I'm still receiving forwarded e-mails, so he (you) must be alive and kicking still ;-)

The rain has returned to northern California, but that also means it isn't as cold :-)
Grey skies, drizzle, mid-40F's...I can handle that. Great hiking and photography weather.

Jodi, I'm pretty sure the yellow leaf is natural senescence, indeed.
When possible, though, I like to throw a question out to the jury to get reactions.
A second set of eyes, and all that, hehehe ;-)

Well, I've got another project going today.
I harvested the first of my Cryptomeria cones yesterday, and I was glad there were some seeds left.
I'll sow these in a planter-box so they can cold stratify naturally, and then hope that a few are
viable (given the lack of other pollinators in the area). These are seeds of the 'Sekkan' cultivar,
so I will be looking for seedlings with the distinctive creamy-white new foliage.

    Bookmark   January 6, 2013 at 1:25PM
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Josh, well quite interesting! I would love for you to keep us posted on what you do with these. Do you happen to have a pic of the actual plant? If it's a beauty, then don't bother, because I ill be on your tail for one

Yes,I was thinking the very same thig about Al. I too have gotten forwarded mail, but no responses to my e-mails...
Hope you are ok, Al, and since my Mother even has a concern, it would be nice to know you are ok. I did see you post yesterday, so I would assume you are farly ok:-)

I was the meantine, I am not sure about that leaf, and it seems the whole rest of the plant is ok. Hum....

Marle, I got my first frog as a gift and than I have the real things. I am well on my way to frog Nice to meet you.

Laura..Are you lost? I have sent you two text's and still nothing...Oh well:-(
Hope you are well.

Wes, good to see you:-)

Jodik..I am so happy it waited for you. Yahoo. Oh, I can't wait to see it in bloom. Nice weather, right?

Well, guys including Jojo, many hugs and handshakes. Happy New Year!


    Bookmark   January 6, 2013 at 1:59PM
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greenman28 NorCal 7b/8a

Hey, Mike, I'll share updates for sure!

Sorry, buddy, Cryptomeria won't do well in your climate, I'm afraid.
But I can still show you a picture from August :-)

    Bookmark   January 6, 2013 at 2:23PM
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tapla (mid-MI z5b-6a)

I'm fine - no need to worry about me. I was really busy over the holidays and my mail got really backed up, so there's still that to contend with ..... and you guys do such a good job helping everyone that needs help, and providing spot on info ..... I hardly have reason to even BE here, other than to occasionally say hey. It's sort of like a vacation for me. ;-)

I did get 2 really cool bronze frogs last summer at a bonsai convention. One is really small, and the other is pulling a cart that has room for me to fill with 'something', but I don't know what, yet. I'll try to get a couple of pictures.


    Bookmark   January 6, 2013 at 9:47PM
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Good to hear from you, Al... interested in seeing your bronze buddies, and their potential!

Welcome to any newcomers! Always good to hear new voices!

We're still a bit sick, but it's mainly just a leftover cough, the last of the congestion, and a headache, weakness, and sore muscles from coughing. I expect to feel better relatively soon.

The sun is out today, but it's still winter... still cold.

H. "Minerva" has opened her first two buds, and she's just beautiful! I just have to figure out some way to capture and share her in photo form.

Hope everyone has a good day!

    Bookmark   January 7, 2013 at 10:43AM
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greenman28 NorCal 7b/8a

Glad to see you pop in, Al :-)

Hey, Jodi, I hope you can get some bloom pics of Minerva!


    Bookmark   January 7, 2013 at 1:08PM
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Hey, Everyone! I found my camera! It was hiding in plain sight... doh! You wouldn't believe it... it was in my purse. I was afraid I had forgotten it at my son's house over Christmas... but I have it. Being sick has really thrown my game off! I should be able to upload to this laptop straight from the card in the camera, so I'll try to share pictures later!

I just took a few with Minerva's open blooms and the sun coming in the window behind the plant. I don't know if I captured the horses grazing in the background. I tried. We'll see later, when the old guy helps me upload and share them.

Mike, I can't email you... I don't have my address book on this machine. And I can't picture your whole email address in my head. I think it's because there's no extra room, what with all the congestion! ;-) I've been coughing since about 3am... it's now 8am. This is the worst cold/flu I think I've ever had. Just when I think I'm beginning to feel better, I fill up with congestion again and end up coughing until I can't cough any more. Anyway, I'll find out what email address the old guy attached to this machine for my use.

Since he's been sick, too, I expect he won't feel like fixing my monitor right away.

Ahh, hot coffee! So good!

Have a nice day, everyone!

    Bookmark   January 9, 2013 at 9:17AM
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Hey everyone, just wanted to quickly stop by and make sure everyone is ok.

Al good to see you are well.

Josh, thanks for the good Really, that is a beauty!

Jodik...No worries! Let me provide my e-mail again for you.

Now, what's up with that bug? Where in the world did you guys catch it in such a remote area? Please,be careful about the chest congestion, please?
Make sure there is nothing in your chest that can get worst.
Hoping you, Larry, and the monitor will be up and running again:-)

Jojo :-0)


    Bookmark   January 9, 2013 at 9:51AM
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Loveplants2 8b Virginia Beach, Virginia

Hello Everyone!!

Hope you all are staying warm !!!

Jodi...Sounds like the flu has hit you all hard. I hope you feel bettr soon. So many around me are feeling the effects of this bug and it is a bad one this year..

Rest.. Please take care of yourself and your hubby too!

Hi Mike!! Lol.. I am not lost, just have been working alot.

I had vacation during the holidays and now i am back to the "real world" and working again. You know i work these 12-14 hour days and when i am flying, i can't receive text. So i guess some were lost in cyber space. Sorry about that!! :-)

Hope you are feeling better too! Since you have posted, i know we have been in touch.. so i just wanted to say hi!!

We are having some strange temps this week. Expecting highs in the mid 60's and even up to 70 on Sunday. Back to freezing temps after that. My poor palms don't know what to do.

One of my Pindo Palms is pushing flower spikes in January!!

Talk about being confused.. ;-)

Take care and nice to see you all!!

Al.. nice to see you here too! Glad all is well!!


    Bookmark   January 9, 2013 at 11:16AM
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Just checking in... still fighting the tail end of this illness, but beginning to feel more like myself.

I've got a camera full of pictures, but am not sure how to get them where I need them. My monitor is still down, and I'm still using a loaner laptop.

Weather has been cold and icy... can't wait until spring!

Hope everyone is having a good 2013 so far... hopefully I can figure out this picture quandary soon... I'd love to share the blooming of the beautiful H. Minerva!

Happy Growing!

    Bookmark   January 14, 2013 at 6:33PM
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greenman28 NorCal 7b/8a

Hello! Checking in with Jodi, as well! :-)

It has been cold and icy, indeed! Down to 20F for a couple nights, now bouncing around
in the mid to upper 20F's. I have my cold-frame sealed up for the pepper plants...but it's going
to be a struggle for them, regardless.

Good luck getting those images, Jodi. We're all waitin' ;-)

I have a dark, blurry image I took while watering this Squill the other evening. I let it go a bit too dry,
and some of the lower leaves dried out. I think I can feel the bulbs distorting this flimsy plastic container.
Thanks, Al.

    Bookmark   January 15, 2013 at 3:26PM
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Ooh! A Ledebouria! More commonly known as Silver Squill! And a beauty, at that! Nice looking plant, Josh!

I have a small pot of bulbs recovering from a bit of neglect. As I understand it, they prefer a bit more moisture than the Gritty Mix provides, assuming one lives in my sort of environment, that is. I have mine in a combination mix of Gritty, with a handful of high quality commercial potting soil added in for moisture retention. It seems to be doing better now.

The blooms are rather small and nondescript, but still worth seeing when it flowers. Has yours bloomed yet?

I'll try working on those pictures today. Just haven't felt much like doing anything beyond daily, necessary chores. This is a horrible flu. I hope no one else gets it!

    Bookmark   January 16, 2013 at 10:34AM
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I finally managed to upload a couple of pictures for your viewing pleasure... here she is, H. "Minerva"!

Here's a full shot showing both scapes, one opened...

And here's a shot of her second scape, yet to bloom!

I should have more soon, now that I know how to manage everything with this laptop. Thanks for looking!

    Bookmark   January 16, 2013 at 4:59PM
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Few quotes:

As I hurtled through space, one thought kept crossing my mind - every part of this rocket was supplied by the lowest bidder.
~ John Glenn *****

After the game, the King and the pawn go into the same box.
~ Italian proverb *****

You know you're a redneck if your home has wheels and your car doesn't.
~ Jeff Foxworthy *****

When a man opens a car door for his wife, it's either a new car or a new wife.
~ Prince Philip *****

A computer once beat me at chess, but it was no match for me at kickboxing.
~ Emo Philips. *****

    Bookmark   January 17, 2013 at 9:08AM
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Just popping in to say thanks for the "hi"s and that I am enjoying the pics. I just got back from a trip which involved a few gardens in Southern California. nice to see a whole garden of blooms as opposed to just my bedroom!

    Bookmark   January 17, 2013 at 10:18AM
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greenman28 NorCal 7b/8a

Beauty, Jodi! Love that chubby scape! They look so sturdy :-)

Thanks for the compliments on the Squill, as well. When I first got it, I had it in a grittier mix,
but Al mentioned that these prefer 5-1-1, so I moved it...and bam! It immediately grew bigger!
Mine has not bloomed yet. I think I see a Squill (or two?) in your second pic...?

Howdy, Julianna, welcome back ;-)

Rina, loved the quotes...particularly the Italian proverb.
I will be quoting that one often.


    Bookmark   January 17, 2013 at 8:14PM
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tapla (mid-MI z5b-6a)

I thought I should ck in & say hey, too. I've been enjoying a little more TV than usual, and doing a lot more reading this winter - have most of Ken Follett's stuff read - really enjoy him. I like Tom Clancy's military/spy novels, too. Actually, I enjoy just about anything I pick up to read. My sisters send me bags of books from time to time, and I usually read at least 9 of every 10 books they send. I'm sure that % would change though, if they were into romance novels. ;-)

Josh - the blooms are really nothing to look forward to - pretty lackluster - enjoy the foliage. ;-) Mine usually bloom in the winter, so I expect they'll be starting any time now.

Great pics, Jodi - makes me think of spring. Glad you're starting to feel better. Hey Mike, Laura, Julianna! Rina - liked your jokes. I liked the one Josh mentioned and the one by Emo Phillips. ;-)

We haven't had any cold weather here to speak of, but we're going to get some single digit stuff toward the end of the weekend and into next week. I'm really lucky in that cold doesn't bother me. I'll likely go the whole winter without ever putting on anything heavier than a vest.

Take care and avoid the flu (or recurrence thereof)!


    Bookmark   January 17, 2013 at 10:23PM
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Al, my husband is a winter/cold kind of guy, too. He can wear nothing more than a flannel shirt or insulated jacket all winter. He loves the cold! Me, I hate it! It gets in my bones, and I don't feel like I thaw out until spring! Thanks, I am starting to feel better.

It's really nice to have something blooming indoors during the gloomier months... and Hippeastrum bulbs fit the bill nicely! I'm really enjoying it!

I do have a small pot of Squill, Josh... they definitely like a little more moisture than the gritty provides. Mine is recovering from a little neglect. I re-potted it into better medium more suited to its needs.

    Bookmark   January 18, 2013 at 11:55AM
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Loveplants2 8b Virginia Beach, Virginia

Hello Everyone!!

"For our viewing pleasure..." Soooo beautiful, Jodi!!

The colors are stunning!!

Josh... My Squill took off when i repotted mine too! It just loves the 5-1-1. Mine did bloom this summer ( i thought it was an interesting bloom). Tks AL!!!

Josh..I will check to see if i have a pic of that bloom for you!! Your Squill looks so healthy..Love the foliage!!

Hope you are doing well in CA!!

Al.. Hope your are staying warm in your vest!! We just had flurries for the first time this year and everyone panics when "snow" is in the forecast!! It is quite funny to see people in the grocery store buying up everything..

I wanted to post a pic and say "THANK YOU" for the Chocolate Mousse Recipe.. It was a big hit here at my house over the holidays and it was "requested" when my son came home from college.. LOL

What a delicious dessert!! It willl be made again and again!! ;-)

Had to take a pic.. I didn't add Chocolate shavings this time, but it still looked and tasted YUMMY!!!

Thanks again!!


I found one Josh!!! This bloom was prettier after it had more time.. This was the beginning of the flower bloom.

Take care,


    Bookmark   January 19, 2013 at 7:17PM
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Loveplants2 8b Virginia Beach, Virginia

Oh.. I forgot to mention Rina.. Loved the jokes too!

Thank you.. they made me smile!!!

Hi Mike !!! Hope you are staying warm up in MA. Snow? How much? Brrrr.....

Lots of things happening here in the "commonwealth" LOL! Tks Josh!!!

Taking care of the DH.. He had a knee Replacement and i will say that this is a long and painful healing process.

Wes.. i did enjoy the meeting.. I am going at this with an open mind and patience.. :-) Thanks for the kind words about another hobby!!! How was your Christmas dinner? I bet you cooked up a delicious spread. Makes me hungry to even think about!! Mmmm....

Temps here are so crazy with the highs last weekend in the 70's and then dropping into the mid 30's with snow showers yesterday.. The poor trees are trying to bloom.. My neighbors Japanese Quince and her Cherry Tree are blooming.

I will post a pic soon. My Palms are trying to bloom and the daffodils are blooming too.. Its only January here in VB... we still have two more cold months left.. OHH MY!!!

Have a great night everyone!!!


    Bookmark   January 19, 2013 at 9:45PM
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Early wake ups are seen from most all my indoor dormant plants and have me in wonder for some plants around here too. I am hoping that reacting to the earlier than normal breaking dormant wake ups provide the longer growing and good results I am hoping for, but as they say I shouldn't count my chickens before they hatch.

No reservations to this saying either I will still have the fire under the BB-Q on the ready even to cook said chicken hatched or not.

What I left for view is a usual for me to see later in the summer bloom Thillandsia Iontholla Ball

    Bookmark   January 20, 2013 at 10:11AM
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greenman28 NorCal 7b/8a

Another day of nice bright weather here!

Laura, thanks for the pic of the Squill! If mine blooms, I'll take pics.

Nice bloom, Wes!


    Bookmark   January 20, 2013 at 2:10PM
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Your Minerva is beautiful.
How lond would a flower last? You have 2nd scape yet to open - beauty to enjoy.


    Bookmark   January 20, 2013 at 9:29PM
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tapla (mid-MI z5b-6a)

Wife texts husband on a cold winter's morning:

'Windows frozen.'color>

Husband texts back:

'Pour some lukewarm water over it.'color>

Wife texts back 5 minutes later:

'Computer really screwed up now.'color>


    Bookmark   January 21, 2013 at 2:02PM
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LOL, Al! Yikes, that could be a problem! ;-)

Thanks, Rina... depending on conditions, each scape of blooms can last for days. Once pollinated, though, the flowers fade quickly... so I always wait until the flower begins to fade the tiniest bit on its own before hand pollinating. The nice thing is, one large bulb that puts out 2 or 3 scapes can be enjoyed for months... literally! This one was potted in late November/early December, and I thought there would be flowers for Christmas. We traveled over the holidays, though, so I'm glad it took longer. We were able to come home and still enjoy watching it all unfold!

Very nice squill, Laura! Good plant form!

Nice flowers, Mrlike2u! Pretty color!

I hope I didn't forget anything... still feeling the last of this flu thing... I wish it would just leave, already! I'm tired of coughing and blowing my sore nose! LOL!

Let's all wish for an early spring!

    Bookmark   January 21, 2013 at 8:35PM
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Loveplants2 8b Virginia Beach, Virginia

A burglar broke into a house one night. He shined his flashlight around, looking for valuables when a voice in the dark said, 'Jesus knows you're here.'

He nearly jumped out of his skin, clicked his flashlight off, and froze. When he heard nothing more, he shook his head and continued.

Just as he pulled the stereo out so he could disconnect the wires, clear as a bell he heard 'Jesus is watching you.'
Startled, he shined his light around frantically, looking for the source of the voice. Finally, in the corner of the room, his flashlight beam came to rest on a parrot.

'Did you say that?' he hissed at the parrot.

'Yes', the parrot confessed, then squawked, 'I'm just trying to warn you that he's watching you.'

The burglar relaxed. 'Warn me, huh? Who in the world are you?'

'Moses,' replied the bird.

'Moses?' the burglar laughed. 'What kind of people would name a bird Moses?'

'The kind of people who would name a Rottweiler Jesus.



    Bookmark   January 23, 2013 at 8:04PM
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The Ficus Wrangler

Funny, funny, funny

    Bookmark   January 24, 2013 at 12:27PM
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This is one Very Serious Law Firm:
All staff comes to work at 6am and leaves around 11pm.
Suddenly, one guy started his day at 9am.
All the guys exchanged "looks".
And he left at 6pm.
All the guys exchanged "looks".
Next day is the same story.
And the day after is the same story.
Finally, they come to this rebel to explain the rules.
He listened, kept quiet for a while and said: "Excuse me guys, I am on vacation!"

    Bookmark   January 24, 2013 at 2:15PM
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desertgirl702(USDA 9a)

Hey y'all, those are some beautiful baby and flower pics. Al's Christmas stories moved me to tears. The innocence of youth is the most precious thing and with five of my own, I try to preserve that as long as possible and at the same time, not raise them in a bubble. It's quite a tightrope act, lol.

That being said, I was so happy to walk into the big box stores around here and see all the Christmas decorations gone and the gardening stuff all returned to their rightful spots. All is right with the world again...jk...mostly.

So many choices for the fast approaching spring and so little time. Right now I'm just happy that my citrus trees survived the cold spell and the strawberry container plants are finally producing. Gardening in the desert is very weird, lol. Hope everyone is well.

    Bookmark   January 26, 2013 at 12:47AM
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Just checking in... hello, everyone! Here's hoping everyone is feeling decent, experiencing decent weather, and trying to get through the rest of winter with the use of houseplants or garden plans for the coming spring!

Even though I haven't uploaded any new photos yet, I'm still enjoying the last blooms from this wonderful Hippeastrum bulb! I've pollinated every flower so far, and it's looking good for seeds!

We're finally feeling like ourselves after the flu following Christmas... who knew getting older would be so hard!

I'm behind on laundry and other housekeeping... but at least I've been keeping up on my plants!

Happy Growing, Everyone!

    Bookmark   January 28, 2013 at 1:17PM
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tapla (mid-MI z5b-6a)

The innocence of youth:

but only while he's asleep. ;-)

Just checking in, too. Had a busy weekend and an unexpectedly busy Monday, so didn't have opportunity to spend much time at the forums. I hope everyone's doing well and avoiding the flu. ;-)


    Bookmark   January 29, 2013 at 4:13PM
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greenman28 NorCal 7b/8a

Good morning, friends!
We've had a week of day-temps in the 60F's, with nights only dipping into the 30F's,
and so things are beginning to pick up. The buds of the Buckeye trees are coloring
and swelling, in preparation for their February bud-break. Indoors, I have officially
started my superhot peppers for this I'm waiting for germination.

I'll make a proper Thread for this plant eventually, but I really wanted to share this special
gift. I wouldn't typically re-pot right now - not without some pressing need - but I'm glad
I did. Now to see if the change of mix will encourage new root-growth.

'Blue Heaven'

When I unpotted the Orchid, I noted that the roots were in bad shape, so I chopped more than half.

The old bark was very, very large....

So I swiped some gritty 5-1-1....screened bark, turface, and perlite, no peat.

Back in its pot in the fresh mix, watered once, then set with my citrus in a sunny window.


    Bookmark   February 2, 2013 at 12:47PM
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Hey Al...:-0) Yes, I am avoiding the flu luckily. I have been washing my hands several times a day and staying out of public places where everyone is so close together.

What a nice pic. Boy, do I miss those days although my job today makes me feel like sleeping. It's snowing out once again but the sun IS getting stronger and my plants are trying to tell me so. Yippy.

Hello Jodik! I know you and Larry didn't get to avoid the flu:-(
How have you guys been these days?
Yes, I would love to see more pics!
Tell Larry I sais Hello?
And give Minerva a wink for

Hey Josh! Wow! I guess that Orchid did need a repotting!
It's funny, maybe I should look at mine altough it seems to be putiing out a lot of new root growth from the top of what I see.
Man, I KNOW that orchid will love your care and it will make a huge difference in setting it in a much better mix.
It's funny how bark that does lousy on mine too.
I suppose if they were being raised in a VERY tropical full sunlight all day environment, we might be able to get away with it since the roots would still get moisture.
But, in our much drier one, it seems to desicate them instead as they overly dry out.
I think that your mix will provide a much friendlier environment to the root zone.

Great work pal!

Hey Laura! You can make anything flower! Great job. I love that plant and yours too Josh. I lost mine to my cat!

Yes, Laura hugs to you and thank you for that nice looking desert. Yum..
Not much snow here. Weird. We get flurries a lot but nothing to shovel this winter.
I hope we don't get a drought this summer. We could use all the snow and rain this winter before spring.

I hope your palms are holding up well. I know it's been a very cool winter for you.
I hope your grandson, Mom, DH and your kids are all well.

Wes, what's up? I love that little air plant! Are they hard to care for?
Must you spritz every day or can you go for days with it?
See you soon:-)

Rina...Real cute, Love them jokes!

Goota run and if I missed anyone, I am sorry.
I hope my great bunch of friends here are wel, and Mom says Hello!

By the way..

Jojo, where have you beed these days?
You are thought of.


    Bookmark   February 3, 2013 at 1:30PM
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Why I don't rely on a ground hog is because some of my plants can tell me spring is in the air. With winter growers still growing and the summer growers that are slowly but surly waking up. This surly beats a shadow or no shadow on one certain day for me.

Mike. Air plants AKA Thillandsia in Bromiliad are (Yes pun intended) a breeze. They're rather easy care, that one in pic is pure luck or a milder winter than anticipated An air plant blooming a few months early in this area is not expected and the flower does show much lower than normal coloring effects in it's off season show as well. If to compare in this area I'd say imagine an indoor C Ovata Hummel sunset flowering in March, granted it would be nice to see but doesn't look (from Goldilocks) JUST Right.
Anybody got a Valentine Day Joke ?

    Bookmark   February 3, 2013 at 3:41PM
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greenman28 NorCal 7b/8a

Hello, Mike and Wes! Good to see you guys.

Fine weather here in the West. Mike, I already see some new root-nubs on the orchid,
and I think it'll bite into the mix soon. Once it takes off, I'll re-post all of these pics
in a new Thread.

Last night, my first superhot seed sprouted - a Yellow Bhut Jolokia (Ghost Pepper).
Interestingly, the Yellow Bhut was the first of the seeds to sprout last year, as well.
It turned out to be my most productive superhot, too. Some real vigor in the cultivar.


    Bookmark   February 4, 2013 at 7:34PM
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Loveplants2 8b Virginia Beach, Virginia

Hello Everyone!!

Josh.. Great looking "Blue Heaven Orchid" Nice gift!!!

I also love to see your Pepper seeds sprouting!! I know that makes you very happy!! Always nice to see the progress on all of your trees and plants!!

Great job!!

Our trees are budding and we have a Japanese Quince blooming next door as well as a Cherry Tree...
Just a few days ago we had snow here in Va Beach..

Crazy weather..

Mike.. HI!!! My palms were wondering about the snow.. I have one of my Butia's pushing a few flowers pods and they think it is spring. But here in VB, we have a few more months of cold weather. (February and March) can be pretty brutal here.

All is well so far.. Kind of!! ;-) Kids are well, grandson is a cute little guy!! DH is healing slowly from his Knee replacement and things are slowly making progress. It is hard, but it will get better. That is what i keep saying to myself as well as what my best friend keeps telling me!! ;-)

She made me a cute flower arrangement today and brought it over, so i thought i would share.. I hope all is well with you and your family!!! Give Sissy a big hug for me!!

Hi Jodi... I have a "Red Lion" blooming and wanted to post for you I think of you when i look at mine!! It is just beautiful and i think of "Valentine's" when i see this red.. Love the color red!! Should be called "Lady in Red"

Wes.. I was thinking of a good Valentine's day poem, but nothing popped into my brain yet.. LOL, but i did see this and had to chuckle especially after posting the pick of the Mousse that i made from Al's recipe. I think i gained a few pounds from the holidays so this was quite appropriate!!

Thanks AL... Cute pic of your Grandson.. They are so sweet when they are sleeping!! ;-) Thanks again for the recipe .. The Mousse was delicious!! My family thanks you!! This poem helps me with the problems of eating all of these treats!! LMAO!!

Oh.. Thanks MIke for the kind comments on my pics..always like to hear from you.. I can't make everything bloom either..silly! You are to funny!!!

Here ae the pics for everyone!!


A warning to all of you.

Do not wash your hair in the shower!
It's so good to finally get a health warning that is useful.
It involves the shampoo when it runs down your body while you shower with it.

Shampoo Warning!
I don't know WHY I didn't figure this out sooner!
I use shampoo in the shower!
When I wash my hair,
the shampoo runs down my whole body,
and printed very clearly on the shampoo label is this claim:


No wonder I have been gaining weight! Well!
I have gotten rid of that shampoo and I am going to start showering with Dawn dish soap instead.
Its label reads:


Problem solved!

If I don't answer the phone I'll be in the shower.


OK.. Here are the pics!!

Mike here are the palms with the snow a few days ago!

Jodi.. Thinking of you!!

From my girlfried!!

Take care everyone!!!

Hope all is well with you guys!!


    Bookmark   February 4, 2013 at 10:26PM
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greenman28 NorCal 7b/8a

Wow, beautiful, Laura!

We have two cold months ahead, as well.
It's going to be a long time for the peppers indoors :-)


    Bookmark   February 4, 2013 at 10:47PM
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Great pictures, Everyone!

Laura, that snow looks awesome falling on the palm trees. I really like the Red Lion, and the roses, too.

Nice orchid, Josh. I'm sure it will do much better in the new medium. Is it time to start new seeds already? I'm always behind when it comes to vegetable seeds!

I was trying to wait until spring to re-pot my Dendrobium, but I just couldn't. Several days ago I un-potted and re-potted, trimming away nearly half of the roots, which were dead and rotting. I'm glad I didn't wait. I put it in fresh Gritty medium after dusting the root ends with Captan, the only anti-fungal I have. I'm hoping for the best... I really don't want to lose this little guy. The old medium was broken down and holding too much moisture in the center of the pot.

We're finally over the sickness, Mike! It's probably the longest we've been sick... it just hung on, leaving us coughing and feeling poorly... but now we're feeling better. I hope you guys don't get it! Hugs for you and Mom!

We got some snow the other day, but it's since melted. It's beginning to look like winter is almost over. I'm so glad! I just can't take the cold!

I'm already starting to think about everything I have to do once the weather finally breaks... all the pruning and trimming, the planting and mulching, etc...

Well... time to make the donuts! My best to everyone... and JoJo, you're in our thoughts.

    Bookmark   February 5, 2013 at 12:11PM
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greenman28 NorCal 7b/8a

Hey, Jodi, glad you're all mended up :-)
We haven't had any snow here this Winter....which is a disappointment in my book! Maybe this month.
Regardless, I can feel the movement of Spring all around; quiescent yet tense plants, read to break bud.

Here's a plant that Mike sent me last Winter. In a gritty mix of this volume, I can water and fertilize
for the entire Winter. I had to move the plant from its spot due to an increase in height. Pic was taken
January 29, 2013:

Sansevieria 'Bantel's Sensation'

    Bookmark   February 5, 2013 at 8:14PM
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tapla (mid-MI z5b-6a)

Sven and Ole, two Minnesota engineers were standing at the base of a flagpole, looking up. A woman walks by asks what they were doing.

"Ve're supposed to find da height of dis flagpole," said Sven, "but ve
don't haff a ladder."

The woman took a wrench from her purse, loosened a couple of bolts, and laid the pole down on the ground. Then she took a tape measure from her pocketbook, took a measurement and announced, "Twenty-one feet, six inches," and walked away.

Ole shook his head and laughed. "Ain't dat just like a voman? Ve ask
fer da height and she gives us da length!"

Sven and Ole have since lost their engineering jobs and are currently serving in the United States Congress.


    Bookmark   February 6, 2013 at 4:06PM
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The Ficus Wrangler

Ha-ha. Good one Al.

    Bookmark   February 6, 2013 at 4:15PM
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My goodness! It's so good to see such activity from my friends here and to see everyone is doing ok:-)

Laura, WOW!!!! I am loving those Palms! I don't think they would be able to hold up to our weather here for sure!
They are talking over 24 to 20 inches of snow here! You know, I just knew we would get kicked in the but and have to make up for all the snow in one massive snow storm eventually.
I love how the snow looks against the trees.
I'll bet all that snow is gone now with the warmth of the sun these days. Even here it's starting to feel warmer in the sun.
Thank you for posting those awesome pics as you always do.
Good to see your family doing well and those flowers are beautiful.

Josh, what can I say except WOW and I am so glad it ended up in your hands. Mine are not even doing as good as yours. Bravo pal!
It's beautiful:-)
My goodness..Ghost peppers already? Wow, such a short interval between growing seasons for
What would you do for more than a month without peppers?lol
By the way, good news on the orchid. Very exciting! I knew it would take off.

Hey Jodik..So good to see you guys are coming around. Sheesh, what a bad winter so far. Long, gloomy, and cold!

I am ready for spring yesterday!I'm tired, Vitamin D deficient and in need of a nice tan!

Good one Al. I needed a pick me up:-)


    Bookmark   February 6, 2013 at 7:06PM
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    Bookmark   February 9, 2013 at 8:31AM
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Exceedingly beautiful, Mrlike2u... thanks for sharing!

Funny, Al!

Very nice Sans, Josh... and nice yard in the background!

Hi, Mike, Laura... hope everything is good!

I hear the east coast got some snow recently. The forecast had been for us to get some rain turning into ice and snow, but it never materialized.

A couple days ago I noticed tulips and some other greenery beginning in various areas of the garden, though I think it's too early. I hope they survive to bloom.

Have a lovely day everyone!

    Bookmark   February 11, 2013 at 8:29AM
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...what to do with too much snow...don't bother with showelling!
(photo found on web)

    Bookmark   February 11, 2013 at 9:37AM
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tapla (mid-MI z5b-6a)

Rina - one of my kids graduated from MI Tech - way up at the tippy top of MI's upper peninsula. They had exactly the same type of refrigerator for their beer & stuff, except the snow was actually as high as the eve of the old house they lived in.

We got 10 or 12" last Fri - first major snow of the year - hopefully the last, though we really DO need some heavy snow to bring up the level of the great lakes. They are REALLY low!


    Bookmark   February 11, 2013 at 3:09PM
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That is one of the most creative and funniest pictures I ever saw..I LOVE it!! You gave me an

    Bookmark   February 11, 2013 at 7:32PM
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Loveplants2 8b Virginia Beach, Virginia


I think that is one great pic!!

Makes me want "a cold one.."

Nothing like a real "ice box!!" is there?

MIke... i also have an "idea.." I'm thirsty... ;-)


    Bookmark   February 11, 2013 at 10:48PM
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Glad everybody likes it this innovative fridge...

How about some beautiful birds:(also found on web)

    Bookmark   February 12, 2013 at 12:15AM
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And another bird photo from web:

    Bookmark   February 12, 2013 at 12:18AM
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Nice pics. The sun is getting stronger! I can almost smell that potting soil being mixed up in my wheel barrow. Filix.

    Bookmark   February 12, 2013 at 8:44AM
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Cute pictures!

Several days ago while walking the dog, i saw a small bird with an orange throat sitting on the top branches of our smoke tree. It was singing rather nicely. I think it might have been a yellow throated junco, but I'm not certain of the name. I know there are a couple different birds with that sort of coloring in our area. I'm not that familiar with "Birds of North America"... LOL!

It's still rather cold out there, but spring is in the air... I can feel it inching closer!

You're right, Al... we do desperately need more precipitation to bring up water levels.

    Bookmark   February 12, 2013 at 11:19AM
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You are right jodi, spring is in the air...soon it will look like this (tulip season in Holland):


    Bookmark   February 12, 2013 at 2:26PM
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Happy Valentines day everyone...

    Bookmark   February 14, 2013 at 9:22AM
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Loveplants2 8b Virginia Beach, Virginia

Beautiful pictures Rina!

Happy Valentine's Day!

I hope everyone enjoys their day!

Here's to the "chocolate lovers" Yum! ;-)

Take Care,


This post was edited by loveplants2 on Thu, Feb 14, 13 at 12:00

    Bookmark   February 14, 2013 at 11:34AM
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Beautiful photos!

Right up my ally, Laura! Love it! :-)

You all have probably heard me mention a little Dendrobium that was struggling along in decomposing medium... I had hemmed and hawed about whether to re-pot it now, or whether to wait until spring.. and I had went ahead with the re-potting, noticing that it was beginning to go downhill just the tiniest bit, losing a leaf or two.

Well, am I glad I re-potted! I just noticed today that it has a brand new little growth starting! Apparently, it's very happy in its fresh, new medium!

Happy Valentine's Day to everyone! :-)

    Bookmark   February 14, 2013 at 5:01PM
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tapla (mid-MI z5b-6a)

Here's a link to The Mom Song, in case you never saw it. I hope everyone did have a happy Valentine's day, and that the weekend is off to a good start.


    Bookmark   February 16, 2013 at 12:08PM
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tapla (mid-MI z5b-6a)

A friend & I enter a candy store.

Unbeknown to me, as we were browsing, my friend stole some candy.
As we left the store, my friend said to me, "Man I'm the best thief ever! I stole 3 chocolate bars & no one even saw me; beat that."

I was mortified, but after a moment of consideration I said, "Do you want to see something better? Let's go back to the shop and I'll really show you something!"

So back to the counter we went, where I said to the shopkeeper, "Would you like to see some magic?"

The shopkeeper was up for it and replied, "Yes."

So I said, "Give me one chocolate bar."

He gave it to me, and I ate it.

I then asked for a second bar, and ate that as well.

I asked for a third, and finished that one too.

When the shopkeeper asked: "But where's the magic?"

I said, "Check in my friend's pocket, you'll find all three bars of chocolate."

The moral of this story is:
Honesty is the best policy. ;-)


    Bookmark   February 18, 2013 at 9:49PM
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Don't judge anybody until you've walked a mile in their shoes.
After that it doesn't matter, because they're a mile away and you have their shoes!

    Bookmark   February 19, 2013 at 8:16AM
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rina_ quiet, very quiet...

    Bookmark   February 20, 2013 at 12:49AM
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greenman28 NorCal 7b/8a

Hey, guys and gals! I trust you're all well?

I have the week off, and wouldn't you know but it rained and lightly snowed yesterday! Despite the weather, I've re-potted one of my Cryptomeria, and I've replaced a Giant Equisetum with a Restio-Cape Thatching Reed.

    Bookmark   February 20, 2013 at 11:38AM
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Checking in... latest weather report calls for ice, sleet, turning into snow... and man, is it coming down! Did I ever mention that I hate winter?!

Funny, with a twist of wisdom, eh, Al? :-)

I envy those who live in warmer, milder climates... and I vow to get to one some day! My poor, damaged body can't take these cold, damp winters any longer. I dream of warm sunshine, on a beach somewhere... but it's just a dream. I wake up to the same cold damp!

Well, I'm sad to say that all attempts at producing seed from my new bulb have failed. Both scapes aborted their half formed seed pods. Nature in action, I suppose.

I'm going back to my hot coffee and warm blanket now... you all have a lovely evening! :-)

    Bookmark   February 21, 2013 at 5:20PM
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Warmer climate here but letting you know we're getting ice too. And after tomorrow night there isn't a freeze in sight in the 10 day. I know we'll probably have another few because it's supposed to get down to 29, but hope springs eternal that this is the last of stupid winter.

Gawking at begonias and aroids online and generally living in a jungle of the mind at the moment. It helps!

    Bookmark   February 21, 2013 at 5:26PM
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greenman28 NorCal 7b/8a

Hey, Jodi and Julianna :-)

Sending you warm vibes! We had a taste of some snow a day ago, but now the sun is shining and the temps are climbing into the 50F's. Only pockets of snow left in deep shade. Forecast says we'll be dry through the weekend, though.

Jodi, I re-potted my Pink Lady lily seedlings, tossed the smaller of the two, and then noticed that the larger seedling appeared to be dying. Thankfully it shot out another "strap" or leaf....fingers crossed! ;-)

Standing next to the creek, facing south. My property line angles through the creek along the eastern boundary and includes that oak tree on the opposite side of the creek.


    Bookmark   February 22, 2013 at 1:20PM
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Loveplants2 8b Virginia Beach, Virginia

Hello Everyone!!!

Beautiful picture of your creek, Josh.. looks so lush and green. Ready for spring? Sure looks like it to me!!! i know you must be very excited to see the change in the woods. That is your first indicator that spring is coming..

Quite lovely!!!

Hi Jodi.. Hope you are doing well!!! Glad to hear you are feeling better!!!

HI Mike.. Hope you are staying warm!!!

Hi AL... Hope all is well with you. Looks like you all are receiving some snow. I bet it is beautiful up there!!!

Hi Rina, Julianna!!! Here is to spring.. CHEERS!!!

Take care everyone... We are having temps between 40-50 degrees and then it will drop or head up into the 60's. Crazy... but the trees are budding and the Japenese Quince and cherry Blossoms are blooming.. so Spring is in the air.

I cant wait until April.. I just love spring!!! ;-)


    Bookmark   February 23, 2013 at 12:50AM
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greenman28 NorCal 7b/8a

Thanks, Laura, you're right....there's a change in the air, even on these chilly 30F mornings! All sorts of things are waking up. And look who decided to show their faces for me today...the first of the irises. Carefree, spreading well, they've multiplied around the property :-)

    Bookmark   February 23, 2013 at 1:14AM
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Love the irises, and the greenery and the creek - seems so far away for us, still snow on ground - look at our view! - but looks like rain & warmer temps are on the way.
Supposed to be around 40F daytime next week, hope to see snowdrops soon...

    Bookmark   February 23, 2013 at 9:30AM
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A man and his wife were having an argument about who
should brew the coffee each morning.
The wife said, 'You should do it because you get up first,
and then we don't have to wait as long to get our coffee.
The husband said, 'You are in charge of cooking around here and
you should do it, because that is your job, and I can just wait for my coffee.'
Wife replies, 'No, you should do it, and besides, it is in the Bible that the man should do the coffee..'
Husband replies, 'I can't believe that, show me.'
So she fetched the Bible, and opened the Old Testament and showed him at the top of several pages, that it indeed says . 'HEBREWS'

    Bookmark   February 24, 2013 at 12:51PM
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greenman28 NorCal 7b/8a

Thanks, Rina :-)
I hope that snow melts for you soon!


    Bookmark   February 24, 2013 at 1:13PM
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tapla (mid-MI z5b-6a)

How did Moses make his tea? - "Hebrewed" it

Who was the greatest financier in the Bible? - Noah. He was floating his stock while everyone else was in liquidation.

Who was the greatest comedian in the Bible? - Samson.

Been busier than usual at night lately - the kids have been coming over to mooch dinner & watch hockey when it's on. Plus ..... we got a new pooch.

Meet Louie IV:

    Bookmark   February 24, 2013 at 1:20PM
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tapla (mid-MI z5b-6a)

Saint Peter is sitting at the Pearly Gates when two guys wearing dark hoodies, and sagging pants, arrive. St. Peter looked out through the Gates and said, "Wait here. I’ll be right back."

St. Peter goes over to God's chambers and tells him who is waiting for entrance. God says to Peter: "How many times do I have to tell you? You can't be judgmental here. This is heaven. All are loved. All are
brothers. Go back and let them in!"

St. Peter goes back to the Gates, looks around, and lets out a heavy sigh. He returns to God's chambers and says,"Well, they're gone."

“The guys wearing hoodies?" asked God.

"No. The Pearly Gates."


    Bookmark   February 25, 2013 at 4:56PM
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greenman28 NorCal 7b/8a

Hahahahah!!!! Good one, Al :-)
Congrats on the new pup, too!


    Bookmark   February 25, 2013 at 8:39PM
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Great looking pooch, how old is he?

Just had really good laugh...Rina

    Bookmark   February 25, 2013 at 10:08PM
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Great looking pooch, how old is he?

Just had really good laugh...Rina

    Bookmark   February 25, 2013 at 10:09PM
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tapla (mid-MI z5b-6a)

Thanks, Josh!

Whelped Dec 28, so he's 8 wks old. 1/2 poodle, 1/4 bichon, 1/4 shih tzu. It's called a Daisy Dog, though I had no idea what that was until this afternoon. ;-)


    Bookmark   February 25, 2013 at 10:23PM
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Loveplants2 8b Virginia Beach, Virginia

Awwwwww, So Cute!

Hi Al.. What a cute little guy you have there..

Love the coloring on his ears and neck.. Reminds me of a creamy caramel latte, but even sweeter!

Enjoy "Louie". I'm sure he will have a wonderful home!



    Bookmark   February 26, 2013 at 2:09AM
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Hey Al! What a cutie.,Congratulations pal from Mom and I..

He looks so soft and cuddly!

Hello Laura, Josh, Rina, Jodik !!


    Bookmark   March 1, 2013 at 8:17PM
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greenman28 NorCal 7b/8a

Happy Saturday, friends! It was 75F yesterday and it is 71F and faintly overcast. Feeling a bit muggy, even. Not bad for a barbecue with the family this afternoon, though ;-)

Here's a nice Daphne by the front deck. It smells so incredibly sweet, all the way out to the driveway. Love coming home and walking past this plant.


    Bookmark   March 2, 2013 at 4:36PM
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A man goes to the doctor for a check-up.
"How ya' been feeling?" asks the doctor.
"Not so great," complains the man.
"Well, what seems to be the matter?" the doctor asks.
"You see," replies the man, "Sometimes I feel like a wigwam, sometimes I feel like a tee-pee. It's driving me crazy!"
"Ah," nods the doctor knowingly. "I see what your problem is. You're two tents."

    Bookmark   March 2, 2013 at 5:36PM
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How sweet and cute Al, The puppy has the eyes of a great garden frog protector and more.

Yes happy Saturday to you too Josh I cant wait to see the things growing in my yard, but did you have to mention BB-Q too ? Just kidding, thanks for reminding us snow hoarders...SPRING is in the air but not in our chilled outside bones.

    Bookmark   March 2, 2013 at 7:16PM
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tapla (mid-MI z5b-6a)

Hi everyone. Haven't been around much - I don't remember this puppy thing being so much work, but maybe my being almost 20 years younger when we were training the last one has something to do with how I assess work volumes, hmm? ;-) I'll try to be around more as I can, but I'll be starting into repots soon. Last year, we had nearly a week of temps in the 80s in early March, so I HAD to take a week off work to repot - everything was popping at once. This year, I have a couple of days before Easter weekend off & the day after, so I'll be able to go at it at a more leisurely pace - hopefully. Still have about 10" of snow here, but it will be gone by the weekend's end.

Take care. Thanks Laura. Rina, Mike, Josh, MrLike, and anyone I might have left out (sorry) - for the nice comments about the new addition. He was whelped 12/27, so I guess he'll be 10 weeks old tomo. I'll let him start dragging a leash around this weekend to get used to it, and probably start some short sessions working on basic commands as soon as he learns what "NO" means - he's almost there, but not quite, and needs a little longer attention span before I can do anything meaningful with him. Looking forward to it ....

Take care - good growing!


    Bookmark   March 7, 2013 at 4:55PM
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Finally found an old pic of an impressive exposed root system, mosses, ferns and more all growing on a single rock.

    Bookmark   March 7, 2013 at 11:50PM
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that's beautiful - root over rock mega-bonsai...

I need this sign in my kitchen:

    Bookmark   March 10, 2013 at 12:21AM
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Aww ohhh a signage trap.... It's easy to follow both rules... take the food and leave the mess.

    Bookmark   March 10, 2013 at 8:54AM
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Loveplants2 8b Virginia Beach, Virginia

Hi Wes!

Just wanted to say that I loved that pic of the root over rock..
Truly inspiring like you mentioned! Did you take that pic locally up in your area? That is certainly a rare sight to see. Thank you for sending me over to see this beauty!

Truly gorgeous ...

Thank you !

Hello everyone! Hope you all are having a wonderful day!

Take care,


    Bookmark   March 11, 2013 at 12:35PM
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greenman28 NorCal 7b/8a

Greetings, Laura, Wes, Al, Rina, Mike, Jodi, and all!
Sunny day here, and the weather climbing into the 60F's!

    Bookmark   March 11, 2013 at 1:36PM
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Loveplants2 8b Virginia Beach, Virginia

Hi Josh!

Looks beautiful there!

I'm hoping for warmer temps soon...

Ready for spring here in VB!

Hi Al, Mike, Jodi!


    Bookmark   March 11, 2013 at 3:50PM
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Hi Josh
Green grass! Daffodils!
Still little snow around, but raining lately & it's dissapearing...Spring is around the corner.

You are so right, I never noticed (shoudn't post anything after midnight).
Sure my kids would!!!

A woman was trying hard to get the ketchup out of the
jar. During her struggle the phone rang so she asked her 4-year old daughter to answer the phone. 'Mommy can't come to the phone to talk to you right now. She's hitting the bottle.'

A little boy got lost at the YMCA and found himself in the women's locker room. When he was spotted, the room burst into shrieks, with ladies grabbing towels and running for cover. Little boy watched in amazement and then asked, 'What's the matter, haven't you ever seen a little boy before?'

A little girl was watching her parents dress for a party. When she saw her dad donning his tuxedo, she warned, 'Daddy, you shouldn't wear that suit.' 'And why not, darling?' 'You know that it always gives you a headache the next morning.'

A little girl had just finished her first week of school.
'I'm just wasting my time,' she said to her mother. 'I can't read, I can't write, and they won't let me talk!'

A little boy opened the big family Bible. He was fascinated as he fingered through the old pages. Suddenly, something fell out of the Bible. He picked up the object and looked at it. What he saw was an old leaf that had been pressed in between the pages.
'Mama, look what I found,' the boy called out. 'What have you got there, dear?' With astonishment in the young boy's voice, he answered, 'I think it's Adam's underwear!'

    Bookmark   March 12, 2013 at 12:41AM
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It's unseasonably warm today (70 and sunny!), so I've been out arranging the planters on our balcony... DH is only worried about where the BBQ grill is going. ;)

I was also photobombed by a certain little cutie who is glad to be able to sunbathe outside again!

    Bookmark   March 14, 2013 at 6:16PM
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tapla (mid-MI z5b-6a)

Lol - I've been getting the new pup acclimated to a lead and going outside in the cold on his own .... making some progress. He's getting much larger - prolly doubled his weight in the last 3 weeks.


After getting all of the Pope's luggage loaded into the limo, (and he doesn't travel light), the driver notices the Pope is still standing on the curb.

"Excuse me, Your Holiness," says the driver, "Would you please take your seat so we can leave?"

"Well, to tell you the truth," says the Pope, "they never let me drive at the Vatican, and I'd really like to drive today."

"I'm sorry, Your Holiness, but I cannot let you do that. I'd lose my job! What if something should happen?" protests the driver, wishing he'd never gone to work that morning.

"Who's going to tell?" says the Pope with a smile.

Reluctantly, the driver gets in the back as the Pope climbs in behind the wheel. The driver quickly regrets his decision when, after exiting the airport, the Pontiff floors it, accelerating the limo to 205 kms. (Remember, the Pope is German.)

"Please slow down, Your Holiness," pleads the worried driver, but the Pope keeps the pedal to the metal until they hear sirens.

"Oh, dear God, I'm going to lose my license -- and my job!" moans the driver.

The Pope pulls over and rolls down the window as the cop approaches, but the cop takes one look at him, goes back to his motorcycle, and gets on the radio.

"I need to talk to the Chief," he says to the dispatcher.

The Chief gets on the radio and the cop tells him that he's stopped a limo going 205 kph.

"So bust him," says the Chief..

"I don't think we want to do that, he's really important," said the cop.

The Chief exclaimed, "All the more reason!"

"No, I mean really important," said the cop with a bit of persistence.

The Chief then asked, "Who do you have there, the mayor?"

Cop: "Bigger."

Chief: "A senator?"

Cop: "Bigger."

Chief: "The Prime Minister?"

Cop: "Bigger."

"Well," said the Chief, "who is it?"

Cop: "I think it's God!"

The Chief is even more puzzled and curious, "What makes you think it's God?"

Cop: "His chauffeur is the Pope!"

Hava good weekend, everyone!


    Bookmark   March 15, 2013 at 5:58PM
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No Laura that's my old neighborhood where I grew up as a child and high school days. Always thought it was kind of boring as a teen having things like moose in black bear country and those sort of things to entertain..

With age and a trip or two around the blue marble comes wisdom . The other pic is in my neighborhood to entertain us now, we have fancy cable modems fewer black bears and no moose as of lately.

Thought it would be nice to share a bit of the Boston Flower Show I went to on Friday with a neat display plant(s) for you and Al.

This post was edited by mrlike2u on Sat, Mar 16, 13 at 23:29

    Bookmark   March 16, 2013 at 8:04PM
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A cowboy from Calgary

> A cowboy from Calgary appeared before St. Peter at the Pearly Gates.
> 'Have you ever done anything of particular merit?'
> asked St. Peter.
> 'Well, I can think of one thing,' the cowboy offered.
> 'On a trip to Kananskis, I came upon a gang of bikers who were threatening a young woman. I directed them to leave her alone, but they wouldn't listen.
> So, I approached the largest and most tattooed biker and smacked him in the face, kicked his bike over, ripped out his nose ring, and threw it on the ground. I yelled, 'Now, back off or I'll kick the s*** out of all of you!
> St. Peter was impressed, 'When did this happen?'
> 'Couple of minutes ago.'

    Bookmark   March 19, 2013 at 8:56AM
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Loveplants2 8b Virginia Beach, Virginia

Hello Everyone!!!!


Love the pics from the flower show!!! Thanks for posting for us!!!

That pic looks like it is displaying in different stages.. How interesting. Love it!!

Those other pics that you took as a young man are treasures from the past. Funny how we think of things not being interesting until we remember how much fun we had and how hard it is to duplicate those same places. I would give anything to climb in the Oak Trees that were wind blown just like a "windswept" tree. I loved them then and now i wish i would have spent more time in the trees just looking.. I grew up on the beach and now i would give anything to have those dunes and all that we had back then...No bears or Moose,, but we did have huge Loggerhead turtles and many other interesting critters...

I have been around the "marble" a few times too, we always learn and then appreciate what we have in our own backyards...

Thanks for the pics.. i loved the one of "the man cave" I still think it was Mike working his way to gain an early spot in line for Logees.. LOLOL..

Sounds like you all had a good time. No purchases? How about from the show in Boston?

Thanks for the pics...

Rina and AL.. still chuckling!!!!

Take care,


    Bookmark   March 19, 2013 at 11:20PM
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Flower show Boston: I like the displays set up by contractors I think most flower garden shows are aimed toward display for inspiration and ideas for home owners for the outside gardens and some displays as shadow box windows where grouped by various hobby grower.

I purchased a parking license one box of fudge and a framed dried flower printing with my wife's name and it's meaning.

They did have a lot of vendors some where not really garden related but still connected in a way. I was hoping to find certain fragrant oriental lilies none at the vendors booth where the particular ones I was seeking Also I was seeking miniature geraniums the search kind of continues as I know where to find them just hadn't made the connect yet .
Logees and the trip of three I purchased no items but was given a Pittosorum tobira it's a variegated fake citrus bush that doesn't habit growing a twisted trunk. As a challenge I plan to grow it with one. The plant best behave or it's going back to the giver who was last seen by a GW member exiting a man cave.

Purchases: Technically I don't purchase plants, I acquire them by what ever means are necessary
Currently acquired plants for 2013 include: two orchids, one jasmine, one flowering but still fake maple, one cotyledon. I'm certain there are a couple more that don't come to mind right now.
I Agree all one has to do is spend a few days walking around in Tunisia to understand the comforts of home only to view next is some highlands and rocky hillside terrains in Greece.

    Bookmark   March 20, 2013 at 9:17AM
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Am able to upload from both PB and the PC
Still in need of trimming and some minor touchings

This post was edited by mrlike2u on Wed, Mar 20, 13 at 21:52

    Bookmark   March 20, 2013 at 9:48PM
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Checking in... up north visiting the kids and grandkids for a few days. It's cold here, with snow on the ground yet.

At our house, a few hours south, there's no snow on the ground, but it's on and off cold, then mild... and the Daffodil leaves are beginning to shoot up!

Love the pictures, everyone!

Take care... got the whole family here, so... cutting this short.

Mike, I think I missed a call from you, but I can't retrieve the message... this stupid phone, I hate it! We'll talk soon!

Hugs for everyone! Extras for Mom! :-)

    Bookmark   March 21, 2013 at 1:21PM
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tapla (mid-MI z5b-6a)

Well ...... Monday is tax day. There's a box on one of the forms that says "Check here if you are blind". I knew it was a trap, so I put a check 3" away and took the deduction.


    Bookmark   April 12, 2013 at 4:36PM
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tapla (mid-MI z5b-6a)

Anyone else have a Google Tool Bar? Is your spell check acting up? For several days, mine wouldn't work at all - got some kind of error message. Now, it works but won't stay pinned to the tool bar. I NEED it - have to try way too hard to keep from embarrassing myself with my sloppy typing when the spell ck won't work.


    Bookmark   April 12, 2013 at 4:47PM
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I dug though five pages of info to find this such a history it has
What comes as a slight surprise to me is how you are willing to respond to others and offer your help as quickly as you can but if you ask the question I ponder why does it remain answer less all this time. As to say why did it take so long for even one person to say Al cant help you but am hopeful that you find a solution to your problem.

No not the first time I saw this question either but did bring thoughts about the black sheep you mentioned a while ago on this thread.
Speaking of black sheep they already know how to be not always quickly accepted. Another thing about them is all they want is for someone else to be happy too. As you sure do try real hard to help other people be happy in the way you do.

I dont know if this will help your browser problem but I think you ( and others as well ) get the hint. If not call visit or text a black sheep soon and ask them how they're doing and share a slight problem you may of had or still have.

    Bookmark   May 10, 2013 at 9:06AM
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what a great thread :) well worth a read and look, just wanted to add a Cooktown orchard from Australia.

    Bookmark   May 10, 2013 at 9:28AM
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Loveplants2 8b Virginia Beach, Virginia

Hi Everyone!!!

Well said, Wes...

I am sorry to say that I missed Al's question. I wish I had an answer for you Al... My computer was acting up awhile back and I'm still having issues with it now. Did you figure out what the problem was? Hope it is fixed.. I have to be careful with this spell check on my cell, lol! It will put in words when I'm not watching. Lmao!!!

You are the one who helps everyone!! ;-)

Happy belated Birthday.... I hope you had a wonderful day!!!

Great pics Wes ... Great catch on this missed post.. ;-)

I hope everyone is having a great spring!!!

Bitz.. Beautiful pic !! Love the color!!!

Take Care,


    Bookmark   May 10, 2013 at 12:10PM
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tapla (mid-MI z5b-6a)

Wes - it was no big deal. I only asked on the off chance someone might have had the same issue (and fixed it), or that someone might have had an idea. It appears I fixed it by uninstalling the Google tool bar and reinstalling it (about 5 minutes ago). It seems to be staying pinned to the tool bar now, so I guess it's ok. I NEED that spell check!

Pretty picture, Bitz. Thanks for sharing. Spring is in full swing here. Forsythia & all our fruit trees are in bloom. Trees just putting on their spring flush of leaves. Everything looks soo fresh & clean! Garden coming alive.

Thank you for the B-day wish, Laura. How'd you remember? You must have a good mind or you made a note! I appreciate everyone's kind words. I DO like helping people get more from their growing experience. For me, there are a lot of blessings in that thought. First that I CAN help. Second, that I DO so enjoy helping growers - that whole nurturing people who nurture plants thing. And third, that you guys gather here to share your needs and suggestions with others. It all works out rather nicely.

I haven't been around the forums as much as usual. My email has been really busy with people asking questions directly, many of which I couldn't reply to because their user page settings don't allow a direct reply, and there is no email addy included in the questions. It's also the busiest time of the year for me - yard & gardens just waking, and more than 100 temperate bonsai trees (that's just the temperate - not the tropicals, too) needing repotting and/or pruning.

Today it's chilly (44*) and raining hard, so I'm kind of loafing. The power went off in the middle of the night, and my generator is in the back of the garage with about 100 clay pots stacked on top of it, so I figured it was easier to bail the sump hole for the footing drains & pour it down the laundry tub drain than to try to get the generator fired up. The power came back on around 7:30, so I was still able to get to work on time. I'm a little sleepy, but it's do or die for the Red Wings tonight starting at 8, and I'm sure the kids will be over to watch the game, so I'm sure I won't get to bed much before 11:30. I'm supposed to go to the Michigan All-State Bonsai Show across the state tomo, but I haven't heard anything from the guy I'm supposed to go with ..... so who knows if I'll make it.

Take good care, you guys! Thanks again!

(spell ck still pinned to the tool bar - yay!)


    Bookmark   May 10, 2013 at 4:02PM
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greenman28 NorCal 7b/8a

Well, shoot, I feel remiss for missing Al's birthday! So happy belated, Sir ;-) Laura, thanks for the reminder...and, Wes, thank you for hauling this Thread back to the surface.

We've had some hot weather already - in the 90F's - punctuated, thankfully, by two rainstorms that we really needed (saved me the trouble of watering the outdoor plants, although the rain somewhat overwatered my Jades). I'm mowing the lawn twice a week now, and I expect that to continue for the month.

Here's a pic from beneath my birch trees...


    Bookmark   May 10, 2013 at 7:43PM
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are spring that's the best time of the year for us everything comes alive, hope everyone is having fun out in the yard and working hard , I am jealous but my turn will come only 3 an 1/2 months away :)

thanks Laura, Al, Josh and everyone who lets me travel the world without leaving home , its fun watching whats going on on the other side of the world, it sure is becoming a small world.

happy gardening today :)

    Bookmark   May 10, 2013 at 9:10PM
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Al's B day too ? Good to see the computer is up and running I was leaning toward RAM but reload can also work

Earth grown blooming evens in this area are Dogwoods,Lilacs, Azaleas the tulips have been in bloom for a while Iris showing buds that hadn't broken yet.

Container grown Everything that survived the winter and most things I didn't want to survive the winter all showing seasonal signs of good growth.

Happy B-lated Al my joke B day card would of read as follows:
The idea to not wanting to be reminded your getting older is to not tell Laura your B day if asked.. Age is nothing more than a number, to be reminded that your also wiser is

    Bookmark   May 10, 2013 at 11:47PM
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tapla (mid-MI z5b-6a)

Thanks, guys. Had an unexpected freeze last night. There was a heavy frost on the roofs, but it looks like none of my trees got hit. Tonight's different - a freeze warning & 27* for the low. Just got done moving over 130 trees under cover. It LOOKS like this will be the last freeze, and our 'last frost' date is 5/15, but in MI, you never really know. My brother/father/I were fishing on the 4th of July weekend way back when, and it actually snowed for a few minutes. Nutts.

Happy Mother's Day to all the Mom's. I hope you all have a great day! Kids will be here soon for pizza. They wanted to take us out, but my better half said she'd rather just visit at home, and that suits us just fine.


    Bookmark   May 12, 2013 at 5:14PM
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It seems I, too, missed Al's Birthday... so a Happy Belated, to you, Al!

And Happy Mother's Day to all the people out there who work and love and teach in this capacity... including those Dads who go it alone, those Moms who raise children by themselves, Step parents, LGBT parents, Grandparents, and anyone else who loves a child like a Mom does!

I found out a long time ago that it's true... almost anyone can be a mother... but it takes a special person to be a Mom! I'm a Step Mom, and my children were created IN my heart, not under it. As an adopted child, I heard that a lot from my own Mom.

So, here's to a day of days for Mom's everywhere! :-)

This is a tiny little red/orange Tulip that comes up every year in miniature. It never seems to get much bigger than you see, my hand for comparison... and I have small hands. I wear kid's gardening gloves!

Happy Gardening, Everyone!

    Bookmark   May 12, 2013 at 6:24PM
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thanks jodik for sharing the message and the photo :)


    Bookmark   May 12, 2013 at 8:09PM
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My pleasure! :-)

This was late March, looking out my window...

And these were taken in April...

What a difference a few weeks makes! Here in Illinois, they say "if you don't like the weather, wait a minute!"

And it seems to be close to the truth!

A shout out to Laura, Al, Josh, Mike, Rosie, and the usual group... and to all gardeners everywhere!

Happy Gardening!

    Bookmark   May 13, 2013 at 9:29AM
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Loveplants2 8b Virginia Beach, Virginia

Hi Jodi!!!

Beautiful pictures, as always!!! Looks like spring is in the air in Illinois.. We have been waiting here in Virginia for sooo long. ;-) These temps can change overnight. Tonight , they are calling for mid 40's here. All of my trees are out for the summer and i am not carrying them back inside.. NO WAY!!! lol...

Thank you for the Mother's Day Greeting!!!

I hope you had a wonderful day as well.. It doesn't matter where the kids are born and from whom.. as long as they know you' re "mom" and love them as such.. that is all that matters.. Love can be such a strong emotion and can come from all types of "Mothers.." even fathers who care for them without the "mother figure.." in their lives.. I know you are a wonderful mom and they are so fortunate to have you!!!

Hi Bz.. Glad to have you here to share!!! :-)

Hi Josh, Mike..

Thank You Al for the Happy Mother's day card on the thread.. I hope you and your DW had a great day!!!!
I did remember your Birthday.. :-) Wes, is now worried tho.. LOL.. :-) I do have a good memory!!! Hope you had a wonderful day!!!

Wes.. You' re so funny!!! Better watch out.. i can see when your Birthday is too!!!! Maybe next year, i will catch you on that date!!! Hope you are doing well up north!! ;-)

Take care,


    Bookmark   May 13, 2013 at 10:18PM
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tapla (mid-MI z5b-6a)

Thanks for the wishes, Jodi. I've seen this before, but a friend sent it again and again it brought tears to my eyes. All those flash mob things do. For some reason they really move me. If you copy/paste it to your browser & have a look at it, I hope you enjoy it as much as I did!


    Bookmark   May 14, 2013 at 7:35PM
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Thank you, Laura... such wonderful sentiments! :-)

Our weather has been crazy, too... but we half expected it. Last year, we were already laying out soaker hoses and starting to water...and this year, we've gotten so much rain that we're completely saturated! We're just now able to get in and cut grass, and talk about tall! It's hard on the mowers, I'm sure, but what can you do?!

If it's grass, it has to be kept mowed at least semi-regularly... and if it's garden beds, they must be kept weeded or the grasses, thistles and other nasties take over! So, we're darned if we do and darned if we don't!

Mother's Day was nice... calls from my kids, and the husband made a nice dinner... while I spent the day relaxing, for the most part. There are certain chores that must be done regardless of what day it is, like cleaning and feeding dogs and other animals, but that's no big deal... I have it down to a science! ;-)

I finally got the old guy to help me get photos off my camera, so I thought I'd share a few this morning...

Here's a mama and her twins...

My very best mouser... I call her Vixen!

The next generation of excellent mousers... one of Vixen's 3 little ones...

Walking from the shade garden area toward the new rose arbor...

A young Peony Tree in the dappled shade garden... notice the rambler rose runners everywhere on the ground!

Closeup of the flower from the Peony Tree...

Another Peony Tree in the front yard... north side...

And this is a Trillium that opened white and is turning a pale pink shade. It's among a patch of purple flowered hybrid Trillium I planted several years ago... you can see the mottled leaves of the hybrid... I didn't plant the white one, though...

And finally, the first of the Irises are starting!

I hope you enjoyed a walk around the yards with me... stick around as all the roses begin blooming and other perennials begin to color the gardens a wonderful rainbow of scented color!

Thanks, Al... I can finally view Youtube, but the monitor I'm using has no sound on board... for a girl with a technological genius as a husband, I'm always the last to get upgraded! Would you believe I'm still using Windows XP?! I desperately need an upgrade to Windows 7, which should be coming shortly... when he has time to upgrade me. :-)

It's kind of like being the plumber with the leaky toilet handle that sticks, or the barber that doesn't have time to cut his own hair... when you're in the business, you're last in line! :-)

It looks to be another gorgeous day... sunny and hot with strong humidity... I may spend some time weeding and edging today, instead of killing myself cutting grass!

Hope everyone has a lovely day! And... Happy Gardening!

    Bookmark   May 15, 2013 at 10:06AM
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greenman28 NorCal 7b/8a

Hello! Jodi, I really enjoyed the tour! Some great captures. Your cats are wonderful, too :-D This is my brother's half-Siamese half-Manx cat, Rokku....she just gave birth!

    Bookmark   May 15, 2013 at 10:15PM
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thanks Laura and to everyone for sharing the photos and videos :)

blowing a gale and cold here tonight , but not as cold as snow on the ground,

these are my average lows

Average low (°F) °C
Jan (64.2) 17.9
Feb (64.8) 18.2
Mar (62.1) 16.7
April (57.6) 14.2
May (53.2) 11.8
Jun (48.9) 9.4
Jul (46.9) 8.3
Aug (47.8) 8.8
Sep (51.1) 10.6
Oct (54.7) 12.6
Nov (57.9) 14.4
Dec (61.7) 16.5

record low (33.4) 0.8

record high (111.4) 44.1 that was this last summer

just felt like sharing that and to see it myself .

glad everyone has new flowers and veggies coming :)


This post was edited by bitzppa on Thu, May 16, 13 at 10:00

    Bookmark   May 16, 2013 at 9:53AM
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A very pretty cat, Josh, and quite a family! How many babies are there?

Vixen just has three kittens... the little orange one, a black and white, and a light gray tortie rather like herself. They're so cute, and fun to watch as they grow and learn! Surprisingly, that little orange one has already caught his own mouse! It was a little mouse, but still... I was impressed!

Today, if it doesn't rain, I'll be back to finishing up the grass cutting, then off to weed more beds.

Happy Gardening, Everyone!

    Bookmark   May 16, 2013 at 10:15AM
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Loveplants2 8b Virginia Beach, Virginia

Hello Everyone!!

Just wanted to say hello and that i hope you all are enjoying the weeekend...

Hi Josh!! Love the new litter!! Mom sure looks proud!! ;-)

Jodi... Love all the cute pics of your little ones.. so cute!!

I need a cat around my house.. Just to help keep the mice and moles in check!!!

BZ.. I would love those average lows.. Thanks for posting the numbers.. very interesting!!!

Hope you are taking care of those trees with the winds you are having!!

Have a great day!!


    Bookmark   May 19, 2013 at 1:54PM
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greenman28 NorCal 7b/8a

Good morning, Jodi, Laura, BZ, and everyone else stopping by!

It's been a big weekend. I helped friends move apartments all day yesterday, up stairs and down, downstairs and up. What a workout. So, at 7:00 I then had my sister's 30th birthday to attend, despite my fatigued state. We were up carousing until 2:30 this morning.

Jodi, Rokku has three kittens as well, two females and a male.

Well, this Thread is just about maxed out, so we'll have to start another for our casual gardening, family, and animal updates can continue.


    Bookmark   May 19, 2013 at 2:21PM
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tapla (mid-MI z5b-6a)

I found out that you can keep a thread going well past the allotted 150 posts if you keep the thread open on your browser. Lol - keep that in mind if for some reason you ever are wont to have the last word on a particular thread.


Here is a link that might be useful: The thread continued

    Bookmark   May 19, 2013 at 2:44PM
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