Here is my post-Holiday review of progress after thirteen weeks (unlucky for some but hopefully not for the ‘triffids’):
The Basil Brothers
The Brothers were looking a bit droopy yesterday but a good glug of water has again quickly restored them to their previous good condition. Haven’t got around to re-potting the cuttings yet but will try to do this reasonably soon.
Pitch doesn’t seem to fussed that I snipped a few of the dead pitchers off during the week and continues his late summer/autumn growth spurt in excellent condition. Could probably dispense with the wooden skewers used to prop up the previous pitchers but don’t wish to disturb the rhizome before dormancy. I will leave these in until he goes to sleep but I shouldn’t require them next year.
Rather than her growth stalling when being stalled to her stock position, Sunny has demonstrated even more growth. It struck me the other day that at the moment she looks much like the picture of Drosera nidiformis that I took from the vendor’s website in week 2 to demonstrate her lack of progress. While Drake has waned, Sunny has shown a staying power to match her competitive streak shown once that young pretender had arrived. Am certainly enjoying her late flourish and already looking forward fondly to her progress next year now that she has properly settled in.
Although there is evidence of further albeit minor decline from last week I am happy to announce that I have discovered some new shoots rising like a phoenix from the flames which can be seen in the final picture above. These shoots are brown but apart from that they seem healthy. I have kept a close eye on Drake every day this week but it is still really to early to say whether the move to the more shady windowsill will save him. Fingers, toes and everything else are crossed.
Nothing to report really. Looks unchanged and the new growth still seems happy.
The right middle trap has finally opened and wider than the rest although the freak show continues. It will be interesting to see if any of these traps are capable of catching anything. While Autumn is definitely here and the nights are drawing in, with insect population normally beginning to wane at this time of year, we are still aparty to some very sunny spells and, dare I say it, the odd scorcher so perhaps the hunt is not yet up. Will have to start reading up on VFT dormancy as it looks like these guys (and possibly Drake) will sleep first.
More evidence of traps beginning to die and the once majestic Aphro seems to be continuing his slow wind-down to sleepy bye bye. Still a few healthy traps though so perhaps he’s got one or two more meals in him, if he can compete with the local, and increasingly abundant, spider population.
Cass and Aggy (The Moroccan Twin Sisters)
Has a closer look at the Sisters and it appears that the plentiful holes in their leaves are due to caterpillars rather than gastropods. There are lots of black eggs over a large number of the leaves and late today I removed a small light green caterpillar from the plant. Not sure that I could actually find enough leaves to make a cup of tea at the moment let alone a pot. This is an issue that I will have to investigate and redress if I want to have that cup of mint tea this year.
Following his drain and soak upon my return I have given Gronda a good misting every other day and this seems to have notably perked him up. I am happy to report that his curl factor has now reduced to 1.5 and hopefully with regular misting this will return to 0 next week.
In week 7, I suggested that Gronda be given a good drain and soak once every three weeks with regular misting. He was watered in week 6 and showed good progress in weeks 7, 8 and 9 before showing a slight decline in week 10 although he did not receive much misting in week 10. He was given a good drain and soak between weeks 10 and 11 before I went away and another upon my return in week 13. In future I would like to see if, with regular mistings, he will improve whilst being watered every four weeks in the summer months. This may not be enough in which case three weeks may be best.
As has been previously mentioned http://www.theflowerexpert.com/content/aboutflowers/exoticflowers/calatheas says that, “Calatheas actively grow from march to october when the soil is moist,” but “during winter allow the top soil to dry between waterings”. This website also suggests that the plant should be re-potted “during late spring when the plant becomes crowdy in its containers” although according to http://www.gardeningknowhow.com/houseplants/zebra-plant/calathea-zebra-houseplant.htm this need only be done, “about every two years“.
Don’t need to worry about re-potting yet but it seems that the plant will require less watering through the Winter months from November. Still no sign of that moisture sensor and my revised delivery date is now between 24th September and 8th October. Considering that I placed the order on 23rd July this is not ideal but I guess the green fingers of England mean that such items are in great demand particularly over the summer months.
Hulk was also given a good drain and soak before I went away. Back in Week 8, I proposed a drain and soak every week but between Weeks 9 and 10 there was little evidence of deterioration so I reasoned that a fortnightly treatment may be enough. He is already overdue so I will give him a drain and soak this week.
http://www.plantandflowerinfo.com/sansevieria/sansevieria.html states that, “During the winter months, water is restricted and the plants are watered only enough to keep the leaves from shriveling“. Maybe this means that I am watering him as for Winter and should give him a little more water. As Winter approaches maybe I should keep a similar regime as I have been following and look to up his waterings once Summer returns.
Is there anybody there? …
I said that upon my return I would review Flapjack’s watering times, possibly giving him a drain and soak once a fortnight or even once a week. He clearly isn’t getting enough water.
http://thepalmroom.wordpress.com/plant-care-discussion-forum/kalanchoe-thrysiflora-kalanchoe-luciae/ has the following to say: “Water regularly, when soil dries about an inch down into the pot or ground. … very drought tolerant. They are susceptible to overwatering, however, so err on the side of not watering when unsure.”
Will give him a drain and soak this week.