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> Way To Grow, Girl (and Guy)!, the gardening and houseplant thread
pepper
post Aug 8 2006, 08:11 PM
Post #1







thanks halcyon. i have the kind of planters that hang over the balcony and am thinking that anything, herby flowery or otherwise, would be lovely. just something nice and green that i can plant this late and that will stay green and lush for a while. one side of the deck doesn't get a lot of direct sunlight (i have all the house plants out there, they LOVE it) but the other side gets light for a few hours in the afternoon. that side has stuff in the planters already but it's all dying off, i picked the wrong kinds of things (strawberries and carpet of snow). there are some pinks in the sunny side planters that are really flourishing, no flowers yet but so much green stuff, really gorgeous.
i'm wondering too about clematis, how much light does it need, will it do well in a planter or should i choose something else for next year? i think clematis is such a gorgeous plant.
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doodlebug
post Aug 8 2006, 12:23 PM
Post #2


I know it's only rock 'n' roll. But I like it.
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From: a riverbank in BC, Canada


Hello! Quick post! I need to be working....shh!

batty, I'll PM you this week - sorry I didn't on the weekend!

gigi and quink, welcome!

I think houseplants love a good shower, and I wouldn't worry about saturating the soil, as long as you let it drain properly, and then let it dry back to whatever stage it should be in before you water again. What they really seem to hate is being left in standing water. I live in a really dusty desert-type area, and if I didn't shower my plants, they'd be desperately unhappy! Actually, I have a coil hose now that attaches to my kitchen faucet, and has a "gentle spray" attachment (it's from Lee Valley Hardware, if anyone's looking - you can order online)....in good weather, I can take my plants out on the deck for their shower!

Rubber tree may or may not be happy about being pruned. I pruned one and it never grew back properly. Best thing to do is go for it, but make sure you leave some branches unpruned, and then root the cuttings....that way even if the mother plant doesn't make it, it will still "go on." You could also try air layering. I can explain how to do these things if you're not sure!


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halcyon
post Aug 8 2006, 10:00 AM
Post #3


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Quink--welcome! Certain plants don't like having wet leaves, particularly african violets. It can burn the leaves. I'd say anything with fuzzy leaves shouldn't get a shower, but for other, smooth-leaved indoor plants, it's a great idea. I don't know if spider mites are a problem in Scotland, but I've had problems when leaves get too dusty and spider mites (and other pests) get a foothold. If you have problems with fungus, give the showers in the morning so the plants' leaves can dry before the cool evening. Enjoy your plants!
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battygurl
post Aug 8 2006, 12:38 AM
Post #4


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Our zuchinni plants have little tiny zuchinni's on them! So exciting.

quink, I'm not sure with houseplants but I know it's not a good idea to water the leaves in a vegetable garden. Apparently it washes away stuff that's good for the leaves? In the summer in midday it also puts the leaves in danger of scorching when the water evaporates really quickly, but I don't think you have to worry about that indoors.

I'll await your pm, doodle. smile.gif


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halcyon
post Aug 7 2006, 11:55 PM
Post #5


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Pepper, a few years back I bought a little plant of pineapple sage on a lark and it became the hugest, most lively plant I'd ever seen...big oval fragrant leaves, with deep pink-red salvia flowers. It grew a big root through the drain hole of the pot and into the ground...it only succumbed when I accidentally broke that when picking it up. I'd say it would definitely last for a while, depending on your location and conditions...what sort of things do you like? herbs, flowery things, foliage?
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pepper
post Aug 6 2006, 04:05 PM
Post #6







i just put up new planter boxes around the railing on my deck and now i have no idea what i can plant in there this late in the season? i want something that will look nice soon and last for a while. any ideas?
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ginger_kitty
post Aug 6 2006, 03:19 PM
Post #7


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gigi, cut it sparingly and only when you absolutely have to. Rubber trees bleed when you cut them so over trimming can be catastrophic.


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GiGi21
post Aug 5 2006, 08:22 AM
Post #8


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I love gardening- I have a small balcony now- loaded with herbs and pretty things. I also just inherited a huge India Rubber Tree, I was thrilled to see it in the new issue of BUST- does anyone know anything more about them- like can you cut them back (is that a crime?) It already takes up half my living room and I'm moving to a smaller place...
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quink
post Aug 5 2006, 02:29 AM
Post #9


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Hello,

I am new around here and kinda nervous about butting in on a subject but I LOVE my houseplants and got all excited reading about what you guys have been growing so I am ploughing on in...

I am so jealous of those of you who have balconies, I live in Scotland (little balcony action here) so it's hard to do outside stuff. I have big windows and a bright sunny flat so that makes up for it though I guess. I was considering putting window boxes out on the ledge but I have a fear of them falling off and killing my downstairs neighbour while she's in her garden!

So, I struggle on.... my problem at the moment seems to be that some of my plants (esp the banana plant) are doing really well and I just end up re-potting them bigger and bigger! Which is hard when you are doing it in the shower cubilce! Actually that's not a problem, at leat they are growing. Though I do have to buy bigger and better pots - nice ceramic ones obviously! - which I lug back on foot from the garden centre as I don't have a car. (Cue boyfriend giving me the 'more plants? look'.

Do you ever give your plants a shower? I have started doing it as it cleans the leaves too but I wonder if I get them too drenched? Any thoughts?

Thanks for the tip on the Chinese Evergreen, I am forever rearranging plants so they all get a turn in the sunnier spots so to have something that likes the darker zones would be great.
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doodlebug
post Aug 5 2006, 12:40 AM
Post #10


I know it's only rock 'n' roll. But I like it.
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Cool! I'll PM you this weekend!

Grandad was a carpenter by trade - he built the house, too! The land was all swamp when he bought it, and everybody said he was crazy...


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battygurl
post Aug 5 2006, 12:26 AM
Post #11


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Doodle, I'd love to see the garden! I love gardens that are old and established like that, there's so many surprises in them, and they say so much about the person who kept them.

I'm kind of sad because I'm pretty sure we'll be moving next year, so a lot of the work that goes into the garden this year we won't get to enjoy next year. It's kind of cool how gardens grow and evolve over the years, but it's frustrating when you move every year or so.


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Tears are curious things, for like earthquakes or puppet shows they can occur at any time, without any warning, and without any good reason. --Lemony Snicket
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doodlebug
post Aug 4 2006, 11:29 PM
Post #12


I know it's only rock 'n' roll. But I like it.
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From: a riverbank in BC, Canada


Hmm....is this going to turn into my "blog," like the decorating thread did for awhile????

*taps feet while waiting for other gardeners to show up*

I'm posting so this will bump, anyway.

I did buy some more plant pots today. They had some lovely 6" ceramic ones at Safeway for 2.99 CAD....very cheap, and they're interesting shapes.....two lime green and two purple! (Those of you who know me from the decorating thread know why this matters! cool.gif)


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doodlebug
post Aug 4 2006, 12:30 AM
Post #13


I know it's only rock 'n' roll. But I like it.
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From: a riverbank in BC, Canada


Ok! I managed to get the two plant hangers up in my bedroom, avec new plants...I think I may have hung them a bit too high, but since I'll have to rehang them when I paint, I won't worry about it for now.

And I transplanted the Chinese evergreen (my favourite plant in the universe). By the way, if people are ever looking for an easy but gorgeous houseplant that grows in crappy to medium light (and thrives on neglect), this is your plant....just make sure to put two or three in the same pot so it looks bushy. Chinese evergreen was the first houseplant I ever tried growing, when I was about 20 or 21, and I kept it going for years. (Erm.....no, this isn't the same one! I gave that one away when I moved.)

And I've now got three pots with three jade cuttings each, and three pots with six rattail cacti cuttings each. Goddess bless rooting hormone. cool.gif

AND I forgot I was wearing a white cami, and got potting soil on it. dry.gif

Still have to pot up the dieffenbachias, but that will keep till the weekend.


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doodlebug
post Aug 3 2006, 10:34 PM
Post #14


I know it's only rock 'n' roll. But I like it.
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From: a riverbank in BC, Canada


Just a very quick post....

I've found that the easiest annual to grow from seed (and cuttings) is coleus. You can start it anytime, and it will keep going into the fall, even on a balcony. Just keep pinching out the flowers and the growing tips to keep it bushy. The flowers are crap anyway; it's the foliage that's the showy part of coleus!

I can't grow perennials on my balcony, 'cause it's too cold in winter where I live (unless I provide bottom heat). That's one of the reasons I haven't gotten back into balcony gardening yet.


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pollystyrene
post Aug 3 2006, 10:27 PM
Post #15


Too many mutha uckas, Uckin' with my shi-
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I just started gardening- I live in a second floor condo, so it's all in pots on the balcony. About the first week of June, I planted lemony basil, cilantro, pansies and violas. About a week later, I planted cosmos and shasta daisies.

The pansies and violas were a pain because they have to germinate in the dark, so I had to keep them covered for about a week or so. As of now, eight weeks later, the pansies are going strong, but no flowers yet. The violas didn't really make it- that was clear after 4 weeks or so. I asked my mom what she thought I should do (I had given up on the violas) so she half-jokingly suggested that I put green onions in the pot. I had a couple in the fridge, so I just stuck them in there- whaddya know, they took root and are quite happy. Now, whenever I need some green onion for a recipe, I just go out and cut some off. They just re-grow. I think next year I'm not going to grow pansies from seed- I'll just buy some pre-grown ones. Too much wait for flowers that won't even come back next year.

The basil is going very well, but the cilantro didn't work. Only 2 plants came up and they're really sensitive to too much heat, so they look pretty withered every few days and aren't getting any bigger. I think I'll try planting some more indoors once summer is over. How well do herbs grow indoors over the winter?

The cosmos are about a foot tall and there's buds, but no flowers. The daisies are doing well, but growing very slow- only a couple inches tall, and nowhere near having flowers yet. My mom said she though perennials grow more slowly, so mybe they'll be better next year.

I probably should have started growing this stuff earlier, indoors, but I was too lazy. We'll see what happens and maybe I'll plant indoors next spring.


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Free from all the pain. Happy and having fun all the time.
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doodlebug
post Aug 3 2006, 07:39 PM
Post #16


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ginger, I think it's a rooted plant. I won't expect it to flower this year, since it wasn't in flower at the garden centre, and it's probably going to be in shock for awhile, after leaving that nice, safe space! But anyway, half the thrill of gardening is watching what the plants are going to do next, right? smile.gif

I think outdoor bleeding hearts are considered a weed by some gardeners, actually! And btw, does anybody remember the bleeding hearts story? My stepmom told me once, while picking apart the flower in layers....something to do with Henry VIII, but I can't remember....

lady ell, jades are dead easy to grow from cuttings! Just steal a leaf from someone's plant the next time you see one, let it dry out for a couple of days, and stick the cut end in the soil...soon you'll see two teeny-tiny leaves growing out of the base of the big leaf! Works even better if you use rooting hormone. I'm doing these ones from stems, though, since I cut my jade back quite a bit.

batty, what kind of winter garden, do you mean veggies and stuff? I think you can grow kale throughout the year, and lots of herbs. My mom (in Van) inherited my grandfather's little house in east Van, with garden (grandad loved his garden), and grows tons of stuff, but no food...except the raspberries, which have been there as long as I can remember. Yum! I'm going to be in Van in late August (Blue Rodeo tix, woot!)...you should come over and see the garden!

I only really know about container gardening (inside and outside), so I'm not much help.


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lady_ell
post Aug 3 2006, 07:14 PM
Post #17


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Oooh, I'm glad about this thread, too! I just moved back home and my parents have a garden... they even planted okra for me, because you can't really buy it up here (no one eats it in New England, it seems). I picked cucumbers and zucchini yesterday and today, and the tomatoes are juuuuuuust starting to ripen. So exciting!

I've never grown bleeding hearts indoors... sorry, I'm no help there. But I love jade plants! What a great idea with the cuttings!
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ginger_kitty
post Aug 3 2006, 05:54 PM
Post #18


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Yay!! Doodle I am glad that you reinstated this thread! I love gardening and house plants. Bleeding hearts are so pretty. Are they a bulb or a root system? With some periennels you can place them in your fridge for 6 weeks then pot them in the house tricking them into believing they have been through the winter cold season. I know it works for lillies, daffodils, and other bulbs. Worth a shot though?

I have really happy b/c my rope plant that I thought was going to die began perking back up and now has long coiled vines. And the late summer flowers are begining to bloom in my garden. Last year, I accidently pulled my phlox mistaking it for a weed, but this year it came back with a vengence and tiny pink flowers have just started to unfold.



I am such a dork! Oh well check back later ladies......


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-We are here on Earth to fart around. Don't let anybody tell you any different.

-What we think, we become.
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battygurl
post Aug 3 2006, 12:08 AM
Post #19


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Oh, yay, garden! Doodle, I know nothing about flowers or house plants. I love bleeding hearts though! When I was a kid I told my mom I wanted them as my wedding bouquet--she was horrifed but tried to pretend she wasn't.

This is the first year I've had the time and space to have a proper garden in awhile. When I was a kid we had a huge garden, but since then I haven't even been able to grow herbs (I was in a basement apartment with no yard for ahwile).

We put our vegetable garden in late, but it's looking hopeful. We have: zuchinni, cucumbers, beets, carrots, lettuce, bush beans and assorted herbs, including 2 kinds of basil. We just thinned everything yesterday, and today the beets have shot up and the zuchinni looks perkier (the thinning was way overdue). I can't wait to eat everything! The plan is to make and freeze lots of veggie chili and lasagne and have some good meals put away for the first weeks of school.

We started a worm composter as well. Too bad we won't have compost for a few months, but we've been using the compost tea (water that leaks out the bottom when you add moisture) to fertilize. We also save our household water to water everything with. Using water from boiled veggies means that some of the nutrients that leached out during cooking are transferred to the soil.

We're thinking it would be cool to have a winter garden (we're in Vancouver), but we've never done it before. Has anyone ever tried it? What did you grow?


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doodlebug
post Aug 2 2006, 11:35 PM
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From: a riverbank in BC, Canada


Ok, well, by not-really-popular demand, I am resurrecting the gardening thread. I'm also including "houseplants" in the descriptor, 'cause that's MY big interest, and also, I seem to remember people having TONS of questions about indoor plants. Also, I'm not taking responsibility for keeping this thread going, so everybody's in, or else it dies again! dry.gif

So....I went a little bit nutso at the garden centre today. I bought 3 - 4" dieffenbacchias, to fill out a spot where a fern passed away (don't know why I bother), an 8" birdsnest pilea, and an 8" clerodendrum (bleeding heart). (Also some glazed pots and metal hangers and stands, and fertilizer, and potting soil, and....it's sooooo easy to spend too much at the garden centre, isn't it?) The last two plants I wanted b/c I have no plants in my newly re-decorated bedroom (except a couple of fakes in the corner), and it's making me sad.

Has anyone ever grown bleeding hearts indoors? I didn't quite know that's what I was getting (it's not in flower) till I got it home and looked it up. It's a big gorgeous green trailer right now, but now that I KNOW it can flower, I'd like it to....I just don't know if it will indoors. My regular fertilizer is for green plants, but I found a pack of Jobe's plant spikes for flowering plants in my cupboard, so I pushed some of those into the soil....don't know if that will make a difference, but here's hoping! (Hopefully they're not too old! I can't even remember the last time I used plant spikes as fertilizer, so I have no idea as to their age. Does fertilizer lose its potency?)

Also, my latest project is that I'm going to grow some jade and some rattail cactus from cuttings, for a couple of my younger friends who don't have the financial luxury of actually paying for plants. Going to do that maybe tomorrow night...I was going to wait for the weekend, but I decided to cut back my (once again overgrown) jade tonight, so the cuttings should be dealt with in a day or two.

I've also got to pot up the dieffs, and transplant my chinese evergreen, which is rootbound.

I love my plants! I have over 30 indoor potted plants (plus a few fakes in the dark corners). Even though I don't have a "real" garden, pottering about and getting dirt under my nails still feels like "soul work." I wish houseplants were more popular, 'cause running a houseplant shop would be my dream job.

What is everyone else up to?


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