So, to summarize life lately,
We finally get cooler temperatures, so work is suddenly a lot less life-threatening, and I think, oh, finally, things are going right again, and then immediately I discover scale on some of the bigger Cereus peruvianus and Agave lurida at work, plus one Dracaena deremensis 'Janet Craig Compacta' but apparently not any of the others that were right next to it, go figure.
Then I find mealybugs on, to date, about six hanging baskets of 'Hindu Rope' Hoya carnosa (within, literally, seconds of telling a customer that we hadn't had mealybug problems in the greenhouse for quite a while -- I suppose I was tempting fate by saying that, but fate was clearly not even trying to resist temptation, either), assorted Hedera helix three-inch pots, one Aglaonema, one Crassula ovata, a really pretty Eugenia bonsai (still pretty, though one wonders how long that will last), and two large Dizygotheca elegantissima. This after a longish stretch of not having any mealybug problems at all. The afflicted plants have been located all over the store, not in any one particular area, so there's no way to know what plants they might have come in on or where they might still be, and everything is going to have to be checked, at some point, which could easily take three weeks to do. I'm betting that the last Florida order is at least partly responsible. The only response I get from anybody at work is, spray spray spray, never mind that we spray every goddamned week and it hasn't seemed capable of doing much, I mean seriously, we may as well be blowing kisses at the bugs, it'd be just as useful.
And then I think our entire stock of larger Codiaeum variegatum, anything bigger than a four-inch pot, has spider mites. As does our one remaining citrus plant (impossible to get citrus now because our supplier in Florida, and the rest of the state, are under a quarantine for citrus canker or something. We could buy from Texas or California, but neither the boss nor I especially want to go to the trouble to track down a new supplier and all the headaches that go with that just for a few lousy citrus trees.), some of the Alocasia 'Polly,' and I think a few of the Hibiscus (though the Hibiscus, some of them, have been outside until recently, and so they could have actual spiders, rather than spider mites. Not enough time in the day to check everything).
All of the orchids have come down with varying kinds of black spots on the flowers, and / or root rot (the root rot makes sense; they've been rained on a lot -- this last batch got shipped just after Tropical Storm Fay soaked them, and then we put them outside because the greenhouse was too hot, where they've also been rained on a lot, because all it's done this summer is rain), and those that aren't rotting need bigger pots.
The latest batch of six-inch Adenium obesum all dropped flowers and buds on arrival, as well as a lot of leaves, and I think it's likely that I haven't actually found all of the problems yet that are out there, because I've been too busy dealing with the ones I know about.
And we've got poinsettias coming in about a month.
And I mean, seriously, most of this shit is new as of a week ago. And then my favorite writer kills himself and Blotanical still won't pick up my feed (not that I'm upset with Stuart about this; I'm just upset in general) so even though I'm still trying to keep up the blog nobody's reading it anyway, and all the customers at work have suddenly turned high-maintenance and impossible to please and douchbaggy. Or, well, not all of them. But the customers do get snippy this time of year, for reasons I cannot fathom, and it's a large enough percentage that it makes work more unpleasant. And I don't even want to think about the election.
So the question is: can orchid pictures make me happy again? If I was happy to begin with, that is? Will orchids make everything better?
That'd be a no. Oh well. Worth a shot.
I can only assume that the moral of the story is, never think, oh, finally, things are going right again, or tell a customer we haven't had mealybug problems in forever. I don't dare try to be happy that at least there's no whitefly. In fact, I probably shouldn't even have mentioned them.