Repotting My Aloe

I’ve just about missed the quarterly posting deadline I’ve given myself, again. So today you get to hear about my house plants.

Let me start by saying I am not good at plants. The only plants I’ve been truly successful with have both been transplants/cuttings from plants my co-workers had. I have a Devil’s Ivy and an Aloe.  The Devil’s Ivy has been pretty awesome, mostly because it likes neglect and is fairly forgiving when I forget to water it for 3 weeks.

The Aloe I have is a baby from a coworker’s plant that had a bajillion babies, was finally split, and then distributed to those interested. Today I split off 6 pups from the aloe I was given, trimmed it down, and repotted it.

When I started today after depotting it looked like this:

It was way to big for the root system it had,  was supported by an orchid stick, and still wasn’t really holding itself up very well. So I read on the internets, and then trimmed off a lot of the lower base fronds that were bent, or browning on the tips.

Once done, I was left with a decent sized base stem I could use to root it further into the new taller pot. The plant itself is now much smaller,  able to hold itself upright properly, and still has plenty of room to grow.

The viable pups have also been repotted into spacious new homes and if they survive, I’ll take the smaller ones in to work.

In the meantime, they’ll live in the window with the Devil’s Ivy, where the fluffy cat can chew on the frond ends as usual.

Orchids

I’ve finally found something I *can* talk about that won’t ruin December surprises and remembered to do a post about it!

I am trying to learn to take care of orchids. Let me preface this by saying I had an orchid a few years ago that was given to me as a gift because I like them, and I wondered “what’s this other big leafed plant with the orchid?” and gave it a little extra water. Then, when the blooms fell off, the “other plant” had leaves turn red and yellow and it looked sick too, so I figured I was a big old failure and threw the whole thing away.

If you’ve ever successfully grown an orchid, you are laughing at me now. It’s ok, I deserve it.

I have 3. One (Madeline) was at work and has finished flowering so I took a trip to Home Depot today for lunch and picked up some pots and orchid bark mix soil.
The other two (the Bobs) are still in bloom but the cat keeps knocking them over, and they’ve been roughed up a bit because of it, so while YouTube tells me I shouldn’t re-pot while the blooms are on, I did it anyway.
YouTube also told me I could put the the Bobs in the same pot and they’d be OK with that, so I did listen about that. Overall, I am happy with the way the Bobs came out and they look good together, but I hope they don’t decide they hate life and die on me because of the premature re-pot. But seriously, the cat was going to take them out permanently if I didn’t do it. He’s a bastard that way.

When Madeline had blooms, they looked like this:
maddyblooms

Now, the Bobs (along with their remaining blooms!) and Madeline look like this:
maddyandthebobs
(The weird lumps in the pot with Maddy are ice cubes. It’s a way to control the amount of water you give the orchid so you don’t drown it and cause the roots to rot or be generally unhappy.)

It will be interesting to see if I can manage to keep them alive until they decide to bloom again next year. I am rather hoping I can.

Summer Garden

I’ve not done much in the way of knitting. Just a row here and there, but nothing really to show. I have finally finished my first bit of weaving but have yet to actually get it off the loom, so nothing to show there either.

I did take some pictures of our container garden on our porch though!

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April in Summary

So, April is almost over, so I figured I should post.

I’ve spun a little.
I’ve knit a little.
I’ve grown seeds into seedlings and then had the birds eat them after I put them in their permanent pots and decided that I wasn’t going to have bird feeders on the porch anymore during spring and summer.

So I’m letting some of the back up seedlings grow a bit more and and I’ll try putting them in the big pots again, and hopefully this time, in a few months I’ll have tomatoes instead in a few days the birds eating them all.

Emerging

This winter has been difficult for me. Too much snow. Too much cold. Too much stress.

But spring is slowly coming and I’ve been knitting a tiny bit; spinning a bit more than that, and planting seeds like a crazed person. I am exploring container gardening even more this year, and even going to try a little plot in the ground in the back yard as well.

I’ve started everything from seedlings and here is what I have planted:
3 kinds of tomatoes
Parsley
Sage
Rosemary
Thyme
Catnip
Spearmint
Lavender
Cilantro
Chives
Green Onions
Poblano Peppers
Mixed Bell Peppers
Yellow Squash
Luffa Gourds
Watermelon

Not everything has sprouted yet, because I planted it all at different times, but the stuff that has sprouted has been great for making me think summer is coming and that I will get to see the sun.

We’ve also cleaned off the deck, and got it ready for the summer and started feeding the birds again. It took them all of 5 minutes to notice I had put food out again.

And we’ve started grilling again, which is both tasty and something shmoo enjoys quite a bit.

Last week’s photos

Ok so I ordered a new charger and new batteries from Amazon and they finally arrived.
Here are the pictures from last week. I apologize in advance for not matching the creativeness of your imaginations!
If the images appear blurry in the post that’s my fault btw… the watermarking thing screws with them, I have turned it off now, but it does not retroactively remove the watermark, so click through for non blurry pics if you are interested.

deckright

deckleft

Rosemary, Lavender, and Sage
Rosemary, Lavender, and Sage

Basil and Parsley
Basil and Parsely. Unfortunately, the cilantro didn’t make it. It finally gave up this past week. However, I have some pineapple mint waiting in a little pot to go into that slot.

Mints and Morning Glories
Mints and Morning Glories
Macroed Morning Glory
Macroed Morning Glory
Mr. Stripey Tomato
Mr. Stripey Tomato

oldxmascolors

mossymonkey

jeans skirt

And for Helena, the tutorial I read before doing my skirt is here:
http://www.savvyseams.com/clothing/jeanskirt.php

Next week, if all goes according to plan, I should have some nice shots of the birds at the feeder, since I am setting up the tripod in the kitchen to furtively takes lots of photos of them whilst they eat.

Let’s Play Pretend

Let’s pretend that I haven’t lost my camera battery charger and I have lots of pictures to share… shall we? (Squinch your eyes up really hard.. that always works right?)

Here’s our back deck. We cleaned it up a bit about 2 months ago and I got some herbs and a fern and a flowering plant, and two bird feeders, and then we got a nice little table and two chairs to go with it. And it’s lovely for spinning…. except the two bird feeders… attract a lot of birds, and their eating mess. But still I’ve never been a bird watching type before, so it’s new and different to try and identify the things that come to visit.

And this? This is my recent spinning. I plied the green-blue stuff. I plied the heathery green stuff. And I plied some naturally died red stuff, done by Stephania that I got at MSW last year. Come to think of it, the heathery green was from MSW last year too… and look how lovely and old fashioned Christmasy they look together!

And here’s my green monkey sock, only the one, as I had to stop and work on this baby hat here…. I should be done with it by next week though, which is good as it needs to be mailed across the pond and the baby is due in about 2 months as it is. But it’s a lovely cute hat no?

I also cheated and cast on for some lace. I am using a nice green silk and my US 1 needles, which makes it rather tiny but I think fabric would be too airy if I went any larger, though perhaps I should, I am not so far along I cannot stop and swatch I suppose….

Oh! and I sewed myself a skirt! Ok, not quite. I just refashioned one. I took my most favorite pair of jeans that had finally had an inner thigh blowout they just couldn’t recover from, and made it into an a-line style skirt using a tutorial I found online. It was about 2 or so hours worth of work, and I love it! It’s still super comfortable like my jeans were, and just as casual, but lemme tell you, if you just throw on a Tshirt and flip-flops and head to Home Depot in this skirt instead of the jeans they used to be… well… I can only say the Gardening section fellas were very attentive for some reason. A skirt! Who knew?