Wordless Wednesday


I have been traveling lately. I visited my sister and Mom in Oklahoma.

My sister, who lives in a townhouse condo, had a persistent problem with folks traipsing across her porch–& setting off her security camera–& being just plain annoying as they went from a parking lot to other units. This is how she solved it. I helped her plant this mixture of succulents, rushes and annuals while I was visiting.

I think it is a lovely–effective– barrier.

I Need to Take My Own Advice


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


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.