Saturday, January 7, 2012

Winter Up's & Down's

 I'm heading out & away from the dreary, gray, wet West Coast in search of sunshine for a few weeks. Thought it would be a good time to quickly check on where a few things are at in my green but soggy world.

The greenhouse radishes - a fun little thing I tried this autumn - has now entered it's next stage. I walked into the greenhouse the other day & was met with quite a stench. Have you ever been in an agricultural area that uses radishes or some other green cover on their fields? When it starts to rot - en mass - it's quite powerful. Well, my little bed of greens was starting to rot & starting to smell, so I thought it best that while I'm away, I help it out.

I turned under the whole lot & nary a radish bulb did I find. But the greens will decompose over the next short months & make the bed ready for planting again.

I have quite a few houseplants - most of them are succulents & it's a good thing. I neglect these plants more than the ones that grow outside! But they tend to be very forgiving - for the most part. And I tend to be very lazy in my care of them.

The spider plants were plopped outside overnight a week or 2 ago to get some much needed watering & dusting. The weather rarely gets below freezing right now, so I wasn't worried about frost bite. But they got hit with a brief shower of hail the following morning. Go figure. I hung them back up & for over a week I was looking at these pathetic, limp, blemished & DYING plants!

Great - I had hoped they were going to last at least until February or March when I will be revitalizing ALL my houseplants with fresh potting soil & cleaned pots. Well, I had one more ace up my sleeve.

This time when I watered them (soaked them in my sink) I gave them some fertilizer....

Yeah, it's as simple as that & sometimes I forget.

They still look really sad, but almost overnight they bounced back up & instead of hanging limply over the side of the container, they are now a bit more bushy.

Hopefully they'll be fine for the next 3 weeks & hopefully I'll be able to bring home some houseplant potting soil so I can perform a little houseplant operation. I plan on reducing the size of the plant by 3/4s - they are really pot bound & since they grow so quickly, I won't mind having small plants for the first year.

My tomato houseplant is now finished. I ran out of time to see if the fruit would ripen on the plant! So I carefully pulled the plant out of my snake plant pot & I've got an unripe tomato to cart around with me. I'm not sure how the airport security will feel about me bringing a tomato with me, but I really want to see if it will ripen on our journey & what it will taste like.

My husband brought home a couple of tomatoes a few weeks ago that looked like aliens. Wish I had taken a photo - they were so scary looking! I don't care that they were 'free' - hard as rock, pale red & after sitting on the counter for only 2 days, they rotted. I chucked them out into one of my veggie beds & the birds wouldn't even eat them!

So, I'm looking forward to see what happens with this little gem. It was fun having a tomato indoors for the winter. I might try it again next year - maybe add a few annual herbs that I miss so much during these dark days...

Well, maybe I'll find some things to talk about while on my journey to the other side of the continent - yup, down to Florida & then back up to Alberta. I'm chasing sunshine now...

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