05 December 2019

blue happy

My stevia downstairs is ailing, but I'm very happy to report that the bay laurel seems to be doing fine with the other plants by the sliding glass door. It's leaves slightly blue compared to the other plants.

03 December 2019

purple and violet

My older, purplish violet is blooming.
So is the newer one, with darker leaves, that I picked up on a whim from nursery a few months ago. Funny, each bunch of flowers on it has a different appearance. One has flowers almost all purple with just a hint of white edges-
Another bunch has wider margins-
And on the third they're mostly white with purple centers-
I don't know why there's such variation on one plant, but it's interesting.

semi succulents

Small kalanchoe, the only one I have left, filling its tiny pot now
Birds-nest sansevieria doing okay. Lower leaves don't look great, but newer ones seem fine so I hope it's just adjusting.
My youngest charlie is the healthiest one. The mid-sized pot I have in my room, the leaves on outer edges of vines are normal darker hue now that I moved it away from the window light. The oldest pot, in the front room, looks awful and I'm probably going to throw it out.
My thanksgiving cactus bloomed! just in time for the holiday.
Starting to bud:
Fully opened a week later:

02 December 2019

all my coleus

The bright, pinched one. I've taken second cuttings of these already, so have nine pots of it now.
'Gay Delight'
Orange and lime
'Kiwi Fern' and crazy 'Rodeo Drive'
more 'Kiwi Fern'
'Watermelon'
I'm used to seeing the leaves of coleus change some in hue, intensity, and how broad the markings are, with changes in light exposure when I bring them in for winter. But these- the 'Rodeo Drive'- newest leaves have no dark markings at all. I didn't expect that.

27 November 2019

window tank plants

Some belated pictures. Hygro or whatever-it-is looking golden in the sunlight- recently cut and replanted some of those stems.
I'm glad I moved the moss rock back a bit, put the crypt becketti behind it, and planted a row of buce 'green wavy' in front. It's one of the nicer spots in the tank now.
Fissidens on the rock is finally big enough to get a decent photo-
Anubias 'pangolino' on the other rock-
I just cut out all these brown stems of the parrot's feather, leaving a bit trailing in on top from above, and a short piece sticking out of the substrate on a few, that are already growing out ferny wisps.
Still have some stems of mermaid weed and ludwigia arcuata (on left). Wish there was more of those, but it grows rather slowly.
Buces still do pretty well for me in here:
The dwarf echinodorus continues to look better in this tank, it doesn't seem to mind the chill so far.

25 November 2019

begonia speckles

My angelwing begonia grows just as quickly as advertised
Already a new leaf:
And the cuttings that were completely bare, sprouting as well:
Other plants still kinda new here- Aglaonema has some new young leaves, it already needs a bigger pot.
and it's grown a few flower spathes. They look just like anubias flowers!
Peace lily is doing alright; better since I removed some leaves that were wilting with puckered creases. I figured out this was the tiny plant-sucking insect I can barely see but was probably also afflicting my sweet potato vine cuttings on the window tank, and the avocado plant nearby. I cut off all the sickly leaves, wiped all the others down with mild bleach solution then again with water to remove the mites or aphids or whatever they were. All treated plants are perking up now.
On the same shelf- heartleaf philodendron doing nicer now, too.

23 November 2019

angel vals

Here's the new plants I put in my 45g a few weeks ago. Crypt spiralis and crypt retrospiralis (yes, trying them again).
 there's the crypt retrospiralis in the far background,
and crypt spiralis behind something else-
it looks a lot like the crypt balasae (foreground here)
I pulled the crinum out of my window tank- it was never happy in there- and moved it into one of the planter baskets in here- background.
My aponogeton capuroni seem to be doing better now, btw.
And here's a new grand thing: vallisneria 'rubra'
The strappy foliage is very broad, and it's cool to see the texture
My angelfish seems to feel comfortable with all these new 'grasslike' additions
I just don't know how well the 'rubra' will do longterm, I haven't seen any new foliage grow out yet and am pretty sure the leaf thickness and/or color will differ as it adjusts to my tank.
Also, I had ordered from the same company two new aponogetons- 'longiplumulosis' and 'Boivinianus' which I was really looking forward to growing. Unfortunately, when I opened the package, one bulb was obviously moldy and smelled bad. I had to toss it. I didn't feel it was worth mentioning back as I had gotten them as a two-for-one deal, so one was free. I put the other one in the tank, and a few days later it was covered in white mold as well. Ugh. Both goners.

substrate

Recently, I bought a new 40lb bag of safe-t-sorb. I followed someone's recipe off the fish forum, this time. Used a ton more baking soda right off the bat:
and then a good large dosing of dry ferts:
Mixed those into the bucket with the first fill of water, after dry sifting out some dust. It bubbled and burbled, I let it sit for almost two weeks, stirring a few times a day.
Then rinsed and rinsed and rinsed and rinsed and rinsed. With tapwater about ten times, then with all five full buckets of tank wastewater from a maintenance day. Then again a few times with freshly dechorinated water, until it was mostly clear. Pleasantly surprised that the recipe worked so well- when I tested water in the bucket after all the rinsing and it had sat another day, the pH was same as the tank. So I think it worked better this time!

Then I took apart the craft mesh wall I'd once made for my window tank, and sewed up a few new planter baskets. Filled them for some new plants, and topped off substrate in the tenner and the 33 Long.

22 November 2019

violet leaves

I haven't had time to post until now, but a few weeks ago I finally used a birthday gift from my mom, combined with one from my husband (thank you's!!) and splurged on fancy african violet leaves:
Here they are all potted up! 'Royal Rage'
'Midnight Rascal'
'Paprika'
'Lady in Red'
'Lavender Magic'
'Bob Serbin' All the times I have grown violets from leaf cuttings before, I stuck it in with lots of petiole showing, like the one on the left here. The instructions that came w/my leaves from the nursery said put them in all the way to the base of leaf, so I did that with most.
'Leading Lady'
'Vintage Lace'
'Crackerjack Red'
'Frosted Brandy' All these names will mean more when the plants actually bloom!
Some have very rosy or puplish undersides:
and some have pointier tips, but the leaves vary less in color than I expected (aside from, of course, the white edged 'Vintage Lace'.
I put them under cover for humidity. I've only lifted the cover a few times to check for mold, and once to gently add water with a syringe.
Yeah, it was probably too many. But I can't wait to see the varied colors and textures on the flowers. When they're grown big enough to go into 3" pots, I'll have to rearrange my houseplants to make room in a favored spot near bedroom window.