Tuesday, January 14, 2014

The Weekend/Transplanting Pansies

Sunday it rain most of the day, hard pouring rain that stopped for short periods of time. The upside, the temperature was in the 60's so no boots or heavy coats. It was a day to shop for my mother and I. Of course the best part is going to the produce market which has a separate building for flowers. I wanted some of everything but didn't buy any plants or flowers. I am forcing myself not to go back today to get something. Five foot tropical plants were only $12.00. Beautiful dish gardens crammed with unusual tropicals in beautiful ceramic container with Asian inspired paintings; primrose of all colors $1.50. Winter cactus were 3 for $5.00 and other smaller tropical plants but still large for $9.00.

There was a sea of orchids in all colors for $5.00's each. My mother was taking near the orchids with another customer. When we got back in the car she told me that the customer told her that the orchids were 3 for $5.00 earlier in the week, wow. I have had to admit to myself that for me orchids are like a tulip. I enjoy their beauty while in bloom and once the bloom is finished the plant is done, although some spring blooming bulbs are perennial. I have not been able to keep them alive to become a houseplant. There was a table of chrysanthemum's for $3.00 in all colors unlike winter mums. Beautiful wicker and ratan baskets of all sizes. There were so many flowers at reasonable prices.

Okay I will stop exciting myself. A busy day is ahead. I took a coffee break and while I drink it I will blog. I transplanted some pansies this morning and have to sterilize more soil first to finish. I used miracle grow organic potting soil. I sterilize it by baking it in the oven. I'm not sure this is really necessary but different people do different things. I won't be using the soil that I used last year from Home Depot for the seedlings. The texture was wonderful but I didn't like how my plants performed this summer with it. I have never made my own soil but I am geared toward doing this in the future because I still don't like the texture of Miracle Grows organic mix. It has a lot of cut up bark in the mix. Brought a bag of vermiculite before it disappeared from the shelves in the Fall. I will keep it to mix with   more components of what I would like to make my mix with. That will not be during seedling time.

I had more pansy seedlings than I thought and still want to start a variety with ruffled leaves but too many seedlings are time consuming. The end product is wonderful, but all the preparation and time it takes to pot up each seedling can be discouraging for me. I did dispose of some seedlings that were smaller than their counterparts and may not be as healthy. I cringe whenever I do this because I want to keep everything but have found from experience that it's okay to do this because when I kept seedlings that didn't look like the others they did not thrive and often died later. Haven't bought small bathroom cups that would have been perfect but I would have to transplant again later and I want to avoid this. Multiple seedlings were put  into each pot. Time will tell how they do with so many in the pot. I have smaller pots I saved to reuse this year but they need to be disinfected and washed. Of course this should have been done last year so everything was ready. Well, there is only so much time in a day.

I still have to start dinner which will be baked turkey parts with gravy, basmati rice, and fresh roasted brussel sprouts and possibly fresh pole beans. This will be my first time having them. My mother bought some at the produce market yesterday and showed them to me. They look like huge string beans and much longer and fuller.This will be my first time roasting brussel sprouts. Seems simple to roast them on a cookie sheet after seasoning with a small amount of some salt and some pepper and coating them with olive oil. I usually buy them frozen and boil them but all the health benefits leach out into the boiling water. 

Just planting bulbs in the window box! This box is outside my daughter's window. She'll enjoy the blooms in the spring.

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