Sunday, November 5, 2017

Focusing on the positive (8 pics)

It's been a while. I'm still here, just trying to sort some things out in my life and get a clearer view on it. It's not easy.

What else is not easy? Growing plants bug-free and healthy in an environment that just bets against me every time. I have disposed of several plants that were either too tasty to bugs or couldn't grow well on a windowsill. Some species just need a better climate (greenhouse) to grow well in the long run and I am not able to give them that at the moment. I admit defeat. Better not to dwell on it though but focus on the positive results instead and try to make them even better. 

Adromischus, for example have been doing fine this year. This red-ish specimen has expanded a lot thanks to the fact that it was not flowering. It is always a compromise here: If the plant is flowering all summer it is not growing new leaves and if it is growing leaves there is no strength left to grow that huge flower stalk. At least that's what I noticed on the windowsill. And I think I prefer new leaves over flowers in this case. This Adromischus marianae v. herrei had a nice red color after last year's winter. The new leaves should turn from green to red in a couple of months too, I suppose.

There is also finally some progress on the leaf cuttings.

Aloinopsis schooneesii, like any Aloinopsis in my experience, is constantly fighting bugs. Nevertheless, it has been growing new leaves and branches. This plant started as a three-leaf-set seedling, growing sets of 3 leaves for a while even after having developed a regular looking side branch. This year it suddenly grew a set of five leaves and then 2 sets of 3 leaves from out of it. This plant is full of surprises.

No surprises with lithops. Most of my plants are already showing new leaves but it will take months for them to fully digest the old leaves. I think I need to support them more with fertilizer next year. Normally I do not use any but if the weather allows it might be beneficial. They seemed kinda weak to me this past year. 

Also, just wanted to show you this little Sedum multiceps. I got it several months back. Normally I don't grow Sedums but this one was too cute. Apparently you can trim it into a bonsai tree.


  1. Like your new Sedum multiceps. Always thought it looked more like a mesemb than a sedum. I've never grown it but several members of our C&S society have it. They told me it needs regular grooming to remove old dead leaves along the stems and regular pruning to encourage lower branching. I would be very interested on how it performs for you. Sounds like it should be of easy culture, but the fact that I don't see it much in collections makes me wonder if there are problems. Please keep us informed on its progress.

    What is the Adromischus you show the leaf cuttings of in photos 2 and 3? Are they another form of Adromischus marianiae? I know there are a lot of forms. I am growing a few types of Adromischus, but I think I keep them too dry because the leaves keep falling off, which then root in the pot, making a little jungle. They are tough plants though.

    Hope your autumn season has been pleasant. We were very warm until a week ago when a cold front from Canada dropped our night temperature to 20 F (-6.5 C ) All my plants are now either in the covered frames on in the house. I'm still finding places for the ones in the house. I think quite a few will end up under the lights in the basement. Take care and smile while you pet Mila for me. :) Bob

  2. I'm curious to see this Sedum develop, too. After flowering sometime in early Summer it seems to have been resting for a prolonged period of time. Just recently it started growing (winter grower?). So I guess I missed the time window for pruning this year. I didn't realize that the leaves along the stems are being removed by the grower. Thank you for the advise. I should maybe do that first. So far I've had no problems with it. Mites didn't like it either so that's good.

    The Adro on pic 2 is A. marianae v. immaculatus. I own a larger plant and the leaves fell off when transplanting (as usual). The one on pic 3 is Adromischus cooperi I believe. I like the small herrei types more :)

    Our lowest temperatures have been -1°C so far. But today it is finally snowing. Mila loves watching snowflakes :)

    Have fun with your basement setup! Having plants under lights in winter must be nice. Winter is quite boring for a grower otherwise :)