Tag Archives: orchids

Houseplants: Highs and lows of 2018

The houseplants did pretty well this year. I did lose my beloved rubber tree but a friend at work returned the one I had given her (she was not a fan). I brought home some new plants,  including a dieffenbachia, 2 dracaena, and succulents (I got a bear paw!), and I put a snake plant in my room after reading it releases oxygen at night and improves air quality. They are all cozy on my plant table, enjoying the bright light in my living room now that the tree in my front lawn has lost it’s leaves.

Highs

Orchid

My garden friend gave me this Dendrobium Kingianum, a lithophytic orchid from Australia, in May of 2017. Last year it grew 2 new branches and several new roots!

A new branch and air root (white)!

Not the best picture but you can see new roots are forming

Aren’t they gorgeous?!

No flowers yet but I hope it’s just a matter of time.

Air plants

The first air plant I ever bought made a pup. A year later, it grew up (awww!).

The baby is now bigger than the mama. Hope it blooms this year!

This baby didn’t grow at all

The second plant I bought bloomed in December 2017.

The bloom didn’t get any bigger or fancier than this.

And now it has a baby!

Isn’t he cute?!

Kalanchoe/Bryophyllum

This mother of thousands is being true to her name.

I’ll have to repot these in the spring

Would you like to receive this gift that keeps on giving or would it be a cruel joke?

At times it feels like a bit of a burden having to deal with all of the babies, but it’s hard not to be impressed when all the leaves are covered with little ones. I guess that’s why it’s a high, not a low. For now.

How cool is this?!

Lows

Desert rose

I bought these seeds in 2017 on Amazon.ca from somewhere in Germany, if I remember correctly. I was excited when they began growing, but since then the ones I gave away last year have died and the ones I kept are barely growing.

The tall one is about the length of my palm and very narrow. It’s the only one that’s really been progressing, albeit very slowly

Aren’t these leaves gorgeous?

I’m still hopeful they will improve but definitely disappointed in their progress.

Gollum jade

We had a heatwave during the first week of July, with temperatures feeling like 40 degrees Celsius and I had no air conditioning.

The heat really took it’s toll (it was a bad time to take a week off, I could barely function). I lost several plants, including my gollum jade. I was so ill from the weather that I didn’t notice it shriveling up.

I think this has to be one of the most horrifying plant deaths I’ve ever witnessed

Shriveled leaves and branches and a soft, squishy stem. Just horrible!

Perhaps I didn’t water it enough during all the humidity. Or over-watered? Thankfully I got another one from my garden friend. Not full grown and glorious like the last one but it’s coming along.

Hoya

I was so sad to see this one go.

I jumped for joy at the sign of new growth

Best new find

New air plants

I bought these air plants at Tiny Flower on Bay street. I love how they look like they’re from outer space but I also think they look pretty classy in the pots that came with the mini orchids I bought at Metro (couldn’t get them to re-bloom and then they died).

These air plants are so elegant

Even classier in this sleek white pot

 

 

 

 

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Root or worm?

Sadly, I think it was a root.

I was fertilizing my succulents with kelp meal when I noticed this thing on the base of the orchid my garden friend gave me. It looked like a worm and it was pointing upwards along the base — why would a root do that? Roots grow outwards.

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The top of this mystery thing looked a bit like a mouth

I used a chopstick to gently poked at it and it came off. It didn’t look like it was moving (I looked for a while). I can see where it came out of the plant so I think it was a root.

And then I noticed a similar, but not quite the same, looking bunch of them following the path of one of the branches. I left them alone.

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These definitely look like young roots, not worms

I actually tossed out a similar bunch that were just sitting on the soil. Unless they came off of the other branch really easily. Argh!

In my defense, I had to make a judgment call. You can’t give a worm any leeway or they’ll devour or suck the life out of your plant. Lesson learned.

 

 

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Orchids

I’ve never been too interested in orchids. I always thought they were too much work. But my colleague bought a mini white plant around Mother’s day and I found it really appealing. Another colleague had a mini in her office that her mom bought her years ago, also very cute.

Recently my garden friend gave me a Dendrobium Kingianum, which she described as “a lithophytic (grows on rocks) orchid from Australia”. It’s supposed to flower during the winter months so I guess I shouldn’t be surprised that it hasn’t done anything since I got it.

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I’m having a hard time keeping the really bent one in the soil while keeping it tied to the stick

I bought myself two minis at Metro last month. I thought they were $5.99, but when I got to the counter they were actually $9.99. I decided to treat myself.

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Many in bloom with more to go when I first bought them

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Some blooms are starting to fade

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Wonder if this flower will make a seed pod?

I have no idea how to care for them beyond what was provided on the tag. Thank goodness for Facebook groups (there are a bunch for orchid enthusiasts).

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My brother says he’s been smelling a lovely flower scent at night. There’s nothing else on my plant table that has flowers so I think it’s the orchids. However, I can’t smell anything when I sniff up close. Mysterious.

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