I Need to Take My Own Advice

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Remember on Friday I talked about watching plants for signs of insect infestation? Apparently I wasn’t taking my own advice.

Of course these little evergreens are never happy indoors and I know that. But I was shocked to see this plant go from healthy to basically dead over the course of a week.

Only the bright green parts are still alive –& there are very few of those.  Everything else is dead and crumbles under my fingers when I touch it.

What can cause such rapid deterioration? Only one thing: spider mites.

Now here is more evidence that Stephen King isn’t a gardener.  Spider mites are tiny little spiders–almost invisible to the eye. Just like regular spiders , some make webs and some don’t . The ones that make webs are easier to find, but usually by the time you find your plants covered in the webs, it’s too late. They’re too far gone to save.

They breed quite quickly as well,  reproducing themselves every 3 days. So a small infestation can get out of control quickly.

And they are so light that they can easily travel between or among plants on any current of air–or your watering can spout,  for example .

Once you know that you have these in your house, you want to remove infested plants (this one is dead anyway) and watch everything else anywhere nearby very closely .

Do as I say, not as I do to avoid a lot of heartbreak.

Wordless Wednesday

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I am no stranger to blooming cacti and succulents. But this one is a first for me. And in a long winter , this is a welcome show of color .

It is some sort of aloe. Of course the plant had no label when I bought it. And the aloe directly behind it-a more mature one–has never bloomed. That just supports my theory that cacti and succulents love to be crowded–and in fact, need to be to bloom.

Wordless Wednesday

20180218_083216Surprise! After days of unseasonable (or as I sometimes like to think of it, unreasonable) weather with temperatures in the upper 40s and even mid 50s, this happened!

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But, no worries. We’re soon going back to “unreasonable.” It’s supposed to be even warmer by the time you read this–maybe mid-60s, or even 70!–so all this will be just a memory.

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But this strange weather is never a good thing–not for plants, which start breaking dormancy early, not for animals, which get confused about breaking torpor, and not for people, who don’t know what to wear on a given day. Very unsettling.

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Wordless Wednesday

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It might be a little hard to see what this photo is. It’s a cylindrical snake plant with what I think is a flower stalk (the white thing) coming up in it.

This has never bloomed for me. And I am amazed that it might be doing so in February?!

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Here’s the whole plant (obviously with other snake plants near it). You can just barely see the little white stalk in this photo.

It’s going to be interesting.