Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Hooverville and Exotics aka Snoozing plants and cold weather

The current Hooverville
I have a number of Epis and they need a 55-45F rest for winter to bloom properly the next yesr. Looking into what others do, from a dark garage shelf to a temperature controlled greenhouse, I came with my solution. 2 -2 light 4' flourescent fixtures in the garage  and a thermometer so I could see what they were enduring. Up until this week of cold all was good at about 55F. Naturally other dormant plants came down: Orinthogalum caudatum, Pelargonium cotyledonis, Pelargonium alterans, Pelargonium worchesterae,  Pelargonium sidoidies,  Pseudobombax ellipticum, Raphionacme burkei,  Sinningia canescens, Uncarina decaryi all of these either were seriously dormant and did not need light during dormancy, or not going dormant as they should in the house, so they got the garage, and I can see several P alterans, U decaryi, P ellipticum all losing leaves and dormancy seems near.P alterans just wants to grow grow grow and that is bad for the plant form.

Well this week of cold has been nerve wracking for me, and the garage dropped to 45F the lowest I wanted. I wrapped the Epi shelf with blue plastic and a wool blanket, and a outdoor chair cushon on top to help heat loss. I got up this morning to 40F and added an oil heater under the blanket on low (I can hold it between my fingers for extended periods when on and its constantly checked). All the non Epis got moved to the inside the house when the blankets were placed on.

I am also looking at a Hatoria salicornioides and thinking about repotting it. It got badly sunburned last year, and I think its in too big a pot. I am thinking about taking it out of the pot, examining the roots and probably putting it on Hydroton. More on Hydroton later. If you are curious the plant just right of the Hatoria is on Hydroton.


 Oh, the Senecio barbertonicus was outside until this cold wave, its inside among the plants of the living room and looking good.

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