Tuesday, January 5, 2016

Pelargonium Zonale FI White

And now there are five pelargonium/geranium seedlings. If you click the link , it'll take you to the site I bought them from last season and give additional information. Not bad out of 25 so far since December 29th. Sometime this week or weekend I'll take them out of the container with the others that haven't germinated. Once seeds germinated it's recommended that the dome/top be removed to prevent damping off. I'll also remove them from the heat mat. So far it doesn't appear to have damaged them leaving the top on and them sitting on a heat mat.  I've also had no problem with this in previous years. 

I'm sure you've heard that winter has arrived in the Northeast with a morning temperature of 11 degrees and below zero with the wind chill. Wonderful weather. I think many people welcomed the temperatures that we would normally be having. Outside my pansies were frozen this morning. I guess it's too late to pull the geraniums with their pink blooms.

The violas I sowed did not germinate yet. I had them on the porch. With the predicted temperatures I removed them from the porch although it's enclosed, it's not heated. I'm always unsure if I should put them in a cool or warm area till they germinate because the seed pack said 60-70 degrees and many reliable sources on the web say they need a cool environment. Maybe that's when they're started in the summer for fall. So I brought them in and tried something different. Some have risen to soil level so I know some will soon germinate. I put them on the heat mat tonight to see what happens. I've never placed them on the mat in the past. Can't hurt. Let's see what happens. 

I prepared a container for the begonias last night but the coir pellets that came with the set were so small. Each cell in the container needs more growing medium. Since it's coir I don't want to mix it with peat. Hopefully this week I can hydrate a part of a block I have and add more grow medium to use so they can be started. As you've seen in the past, the grow very, very slow. It's worth it in the end and they catch up quick and bloom. I'm excited about starting other seeds. Just have to make time.

Are you still possibly buying bulbs? As long as you can work the soil they can be planted. While looking through 700 e-mails toinght and eliminating all except the specials from plant nurseries, I saw a great deal from EdenBrothers that has the last best deal I've gotten. Ten dollars for 100 tulips. They also have hyacinths, allium, and narcissus left but they're going fast. I wanted to order more grape hyacinths because it looks like the squirrels dug up and ate mine but while I was looking at what was available I guess someone else put the last ones in their cart. So I ordered the tulips and hyacinths. I believe shipping to my area was a little over eight dollars.

What am I going to do with them since I really have no more room? The possibilities include taking them to my sister's house and planting them myself because I know she loves them but won't plant them. I gave her some last week and I saw them inside her house. I made her take them outside as they'll rot or dry out indoors as she lets them do every year. The second option is packaging them up for interested coworkers and neighbors who like gardening and whom I believe will plant them.

I'll work on taking clear pictures. One of my favorite parts of seed starting is looking at images of other gardeners seedlings in progress to see what mine should be doing. Clear pictures do help.

They're nice and stocky so far and not leggy. I hope they all germinate and make it to be planted out. Twenty-five white flowering geraniums would be beautiful. I still have others to plant. If they make it, my sister will want a lot of them. This year I'll save some for house plants.

I've been known to pick with seeds to see what's going on below the soil. This seed was covered but looked the same and had come to the top of the soil 2 times. So I covered it again and now it's ready to germinate. Why not it's my seedling and I learn from them. Sometimes I give them a little help. It's like when the seed coat gets stuck on a leaf and you have to help it off.

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