I have been away for quite a long time. All this while, I tore down my entire terrace garden plants, moved the perennials to a new home, cleared up the space after the vege-plants withered away, went into hibernation for a long time.
When I woke up from hibernation, finally something dawned on me – that I can never grow out of the constant urge of planting something, watching them grow.
While I saved a few plants from my old batch, my pruned banyan tree still survives. In fact, three months ago I removed it from the soil and wrapped it in my old used cloth material and put it in a container and placed it indoors; it is growing wonderfully!
I have also rescued two more tiny plants, one more banyan and an adenium plant and placed them indoors. These tiny saplings are showing promise of life 🙂
Last month, I was away for quite a while, and I instructed my ever trusting maid to water the plants. I specifically instructed her to water the plants everyday at the earliest possible time. After a week, when I came back, a number of plants had died!
I check with her and she says that she has been watering the plants everyday. My curious mind wouldn’t leave it at that. I was furious as well as upset that she did not water the plants and the plants died in Chennai heat!
The next time I went away, I did not want to trust her, but I did not have a choice. Then my plant expert (aka dear mom) suggested I place some sort of a drip system so that the plants get continuous water and they survive the heat. So teamed up with my son, we placed a transparent bag full of water with a few pricks under the bag, so the water can drip out and placed them near the roots of all the plants (It was a time consuming job)
My dear hubby returned a few days ahead of me, saw that some plants got the water and some didn’t (somehow the water refused to drip after a few times, which I couldn’t test before leaving), ended up having some tired plants. But all the plants survived!
This intrigued me more! How can some plants that received water everyday die, while plants that did not even receive water survive? And I realised it a few days later. My maid comes in at around 1, post noon, turns on the water and waters the plants! Now, imagine the heat in Chennai. The water and the pipes get heated up in the sun and the only water you can have the entire afternoon and early evening is the piping hot water from the tanks! The plants should have been burnt due to the heat!
And this is exactly why, I can never trust giving this job that requires endless love on the plants to anyone that is not quite there! An expensive lesson learnt at the cost of a huge number of plants! And my strawberry plant died and my Hydrangea is in its last days.
So, all but one of my Strawberry plants are down. Some of them have been my mistakes, some due to the placement of the plants in Chennai heat. The last one here is currently surviving the heat. I am not sure how well it will endure 106 F weather. It is only matter of time!
Did you know that Hydrangea flowers never dry up? Well, at least most never! I have always seen them in bloom, so never really looked them up close. The flowers turn to almost green, so looking at them from a distance, they won’t look exactly like flowers!
Saves you the time to prune old flowers 🙂
PS: My plant is placed where it gets utmost 1 hour of late afternoon sun. I have a good feeling that it likes where it is placed.
I may have been wrong about a million times, but when it comes to actually witnessing the outcomes of the right things, it is a treat! Okra (ladies Finger) and Radishes are by far the easiest growing plants in this season. I might have to confirm after actually checking the rest of the seasons. I am sowing the next batch of Radish today, as part of the sowing plan (So I will have Radish harvest every 15 days). Okra has begun showing up in 2 plants, although the plants look tiny!!
So I harvested couple of radishes and pomegranates this morning! I guess I should have waited a few more days for the radishes, I left a few more to be harvested later. If I can only harvest radishes every 45 days, I should change the sowing plan for radishes to every 15 days; that is, essentially, every sowing day from my sowing plan.
I have grown plants from seeds, I have even managed to grow a handful out of the cuttings from the mother plant. But I have never grown a plant using the soak-drain-place in wet cloth-let it sprout method.
Sprouts of the beans
I have done this a million times to make sprout salad (with mung bean, chick pea, brown bean), but never used this method to really grow plants. As a test (or as some sort of a sowing-growing versus alternate method race), I have also sown the seeds of Cassia Fistula (Common name: Golden shower tree, Tamil: Sarakondrai) in soil and have soaked some of them in water for 24 hours and placed it in a damp cloth.
I guess this heat is taking a toll on the plants. I had four Strawberry plants last week and only two remain now. Until I get the plant’s location sorted, it is downhill on growing strawberries in Chennai 😐
As far as I know, Adenium plants have the capacity to be re-grown through cuttings of the mother plant. I tried the last time, but did not bother to take care of it well. But this time, since I had success growing my banyan plant from the mother plant’s cutting, I wanted to try the same method on Adenium as well. After a week, the bigger leaves dried away, and I just assumed the cuttings will take time and left it at that. Now I see new growth in the leaves, but no new roots. I do not want to jinx this or anything, but I am beginning to think that Adenium cuttings can sustain growing in water. Time will tell.
Old leaves shedding and new leaf formation
All the old leaves have withered, tiny new leaves forming