Wednesday, January 21, 2015
All of this stuff laying on the table are overgrown shoots and sagging foliage. There are browning leaves and stems too. Get the scissors!
Don't be afraid to trim. Plants usually respond well to being groomed. You can also get material to share with your friends and other club members too.
Wednesday, December 31, 2014
This first shot is property of Mauro Peixoto. It's the only photo of Sinningia 'Itagaussu' I could come up with.
Last week I planted some seeds and one of the packets was this Sinningia.
I'm hoping that they grow well and that I can get some of those flowers to happen. That combination of orange and the dark leaves is awesome.
Happy New Year!
Saturday, December 27, 2014
By now your Achimenes or Eucodonia etc. should have gone dormant for the year. Here is what to do with them.
One way to proceed is to just let the pot dry and do nothing till spring. Or, you can harvest the rhizomes and store them until spring. I'm showing how to do the harvesting!
Here's what the pot of Achimenes looks like dumped out.
I dump out the plant, soil, and perlite and get rid of the old material AFTER I sort through it and pick up the rhizomes from the pot.
I also refill the Solo cup with new perlite (the white layer on the bottom) and new soil mix. There isn't much left for a new plant to use in the old mix.
You get in the soil with your fingers and find the little rhizomes. Look to the right of the photo, see the green ones I've already gotten out of the "dirt"? This plant hasn't produced a large amount of rhizomes, but it has made more than the one I started out with in the spring.
Also, this plant produced a really great bounty of rhizomes, perfect for sharing or making a very large hanging basket for the porch in the coming spring.
They are kept a TINY bit moist occasionally so they do not shrivel up and dry too much, bu they also aren't kept wet. If too wet they will rot. Pretty much, you leave them alone and in March or April watch for any signs that some of them are starting to grow. When they show any signs of growing in the spring take them off of the dark shelf and water them well. Then put on the light stand under the lights so they will start to grow strong and non-spindly. If there are an abundance of rhizomes in the little Solo cup, leave one or two in the small Solo cup (if you choose) and put 3-5 rhizomes into a larger pot (or pots) depending on how many rhizomes of that variety you have. Remember to label all the pots, it's so easy to forget that and not know what variety it is.
When the rhizomes begin to grow they look like any other seedling. Small and green and in need of being kept nicely moist but not drowned. Keep them in bright light (under the plant lights) so they don't get long and "leggy". If you keep some plants outside in the summer remember to keep these in partial shade and transition them to the brighter outdoor light and partial sun gradually. Enjoy!
Monday, December 22, 2014
They have some particular requirements for success, so here is a little tutorial for you about how to plant the seeds.
First tell your plant-room helpers you will be working with tiny, delicate things.
Sometimes your helper will be listening intently. Now is a good time to explain that tails in the dirt, sweeping the seeds and pots off the table and stepping in the project isn't helpful.
Set up your pots now. I like a small layer of perlite in the bottom of each pot with the wick already placed and then the MOIST potting soil on top of that. I see how many of the little pots fit into my clear deli container and make up that number of pots.
Folding the paper in this manner lets you control where the seed goes. You can get the seed to slide down the crease by gently tapping the paper. Tap very carefully.
When all done put the containers under some lights. BE CAREFUL if you try putting them in a window. I cooked all my summer seeds this way. Under lights is a much safer and more satisfying route for getting the expensive, rare little gems to grow for you.
Wait a couple weeks to a few months (depending on the varieties you plant) and enjoy. Don't throw away the containers or pots if nothing happens in a month or two. Believe it or not, some of the Gesneriad seeds can take MONTHS to decide to germinate and grow.
Tuesday, December 9, 2014
I could see the little ones starting to form and did not clean this mat untill they were large enough to move to their own pot.
Look by the tip of the tweezers. Can you see the tiny tuber? No matter how small the Sinningia, they seem to start forming their tubers quickly.
This helps them in times of stress and drought.
PS: you can't kill S. sellovii
Saturday, December 6, 2014
Wednesday, December 3, 2014
Sinningia bullata x leopoldii, Gesneria humilis, Amalophyllum ecuadoranum, Chautemsia calcicola, Kohleria 'Beltane'
Sinningia bullata x leopoldii. I grew this from a seed so I guess that would give me the rights to give it a name.
I had three or four others that were various shades of red or darker orange but this clear orange one with the great "snowflake" markings is the best.
The tuber is very odd and sort of corky also. I really like this plant only I'm afraid to cut off the only shoot it has right now so that I can propagate it. The tuber might go dormant and who knows if it would re-sprout?
The flowers are "very gesneriad" in that they too have the fuzzy hair on them and so do the stems and leaves etc.
The Chautemsia, Amalophyllum and Gesneria (for now) are all pretty tiny for those looking for smaller things to fit on your limited light stand shelves. I recommend just getting another stand.... just sayin'.
The adult is a little ratty looking, but the flowers are really cool, so ignore the first photo (a little). ; )