Saturday, April 27, 2013

Saturday morning Sheba and/or Nina picture

Spent a lot of yesterday moving plants outside, and then (after looking at the weather forecast) back inside again. The location is sort of new: the husband poured a slab of concrete on the north side of the garage last fall, which means I've got a decent-sized, mostly-shaded, level surface to fill up with plants this summer.

Unfortunately, they're not accustomed to outdoor light yet, so even if it had been warm enough to leave them out, I couldn't have done it. The side of the garage still gets some direct sun in the afternoon. Sunburn isn't the worst thing in the world, but it's worth going to a little extra trouble to avoid. So for a while, I'm going to be moving plants out every morning and then in again every night.

As for the pets, Sheba had a pretty nice Friday; both the husband and I were outside a lot, so she got to sniff every square inch of the back yard. Several times. Apparently it's fascinating.


Ginny Burton said...

The plants look beautiful and healthy. So does Sheba.

Plowing Through Life (Martha) said...

She's a beautiful dog. And it looks like you've got a terrific place for those plants. They're going to have a great summer outdoors!

Houseplant Guru Lisa said...

Do you take all of your houseplant outside? And if not, which ones do you take out and why? Are you concerned about bringing insects back in?

mr_subjunctive said...

Houseplant Guru Lisa:

Do you take all of your houseplant outside?

No. At the moment, the official count has it at 113, though there are some more that'll be going out. At the moment, it's pretty exhausting moving them all out in the morning and then bringing them back in again at night (too cold at night to leave them outside), plus it's a little easier, with some of them, to just wait until their turn comes up again in the watering cycle and take them out then, rather that try to pull them out from whatever hard-to-reach spot they're in.

Some plants aren't going to go outside no matter what, because there's only so much room. It'll likely be a different set of plants going out next year.

And if not, which ones do you take out and why?

It's different for the different plants. Most of the Agaves and Aloes need more light than I can give them inside, so it seems cruel not to. Freakishly big plants that I want to get even bigger (like the 8-foot tall Coffea and five-foot wide Ficus benjamina) go outside, because they'll grow faster. Many of the Euphorbias are outside, because I'm hoping that being outside will help them shake the fungus problem they've been having. I moved the Leuchtenbergias, Stapelias, and Huernias out in hopes that they might flower for me; they stayed alive fine indoors, but they weren't going to flower there. The Furcraea is outside in hopes that it will offset; I had to throw out the offset it'd produced previously, because of scale. Etc.

Are you concerned about bringing insects back in?

Yes, but I'm also concerned about plants not growing well indoors because I don't have enough light (or heat, or humidity, or air movement, or whatever) for them. Lately, I'm more worried about that than I am bugs.

Houseplant Guru Lisa said...

Mr Subjunctive. That makes sense. When you bring them back in, what do you use on them? Are you an organic houseplant grower? I would like to be more organic, but only use insecticides in my sunroom/greenhouse so the cats can't eat anything with chemicals in them. I use a product containing imidicloprid. Takes care of mealybugs very well. I like to use Neem oil in the form of Rose Rx.

mr_subjunctive said...

Houseplant Guru Lisa:

I won't use anything on them, unless I see an infestation of something.

I'm not organic, nor do I especially aspire to be. It'd be a different story if organic options were comparable in price and effectiveness, but at this point it's not even close.