Listen for the latest news and guidance on all things horticultural. For budding gardeners and seasoned green thumbs alike. From audio aired on premium podcasts.
Why Are the Leaves Curling on My Lime Tree?
"Also had a question to fred at plan. Talk radio dot com from brandy and brandy says the leaves are curling up on my indoor lime tree any idea. Well no i. i'm going to start with. That's not a surprise I have never grown well. I i grew one spiny old orange from a seed one time and i gave it up because you you could so leather with a don't points on but any event my limit on on Well indoor plants of that nature is pretty significant however One of my clients had a orange tree. It was in a container that was at least Twenty eight to thirty inches wide and maybe about that same height. The tree had a trunk of maybe three and a half inches diameter. She had a great big. I'm gonna call it florida room. He's facing it cetera. Almost ideal it would be on the patio in the shade of a tree Until maybe two hours of sun in the middle of the day then the house would shade it in the evening and on through so my experience is through others and i know she was concerned at one point. This was an orange. But i think it's enough the same that this leaf curling is kind of normal in the wintertime. as growth doesn't stop it slows way down on all plants with the seasons and with temperatures et cetera. Et what dealing with is quite normal now if it does not come out with new leaves here in the next six weeks that are that are also curled. Then there may be something else causing a problem. But i've got a hunch. All she needs to do is keep it at room temperature. Give it plenty of light. Don't fertilize until late march A little bit each couple three weeks. And i mean a little bit. We're we're talking now not trying to push a plant as a green houseman would do to get it bigger for sale. We're talking about sustaining or maintaining plants.
What Are Hydrophobic Plants?
"Going to introduce a poly celebic and scientific term. And that is hydrophobic which means fear of water and we're not talking about literal fear but you may have noticed. There are some plants in the garden where the water just beads up and rolls off and we say that these plants have hydrophobic leaves and you might wonder why this happens how it happens if it helps plants if it hurts plants. And that's what we're going to talk about today. Yeah and sometimes people refer to this as the low dose effect right because lotus plants which heard the aquatic plants that have gorgeous flower and the pretty pod their leaves do this and this works for the plant in several ways doesn't it it does and it's really interesting. I've i've always seen this effect and you mentioned the lotus and that's a one. The thing that it's most common to me on is is al camilla. What's the common name for al camilla. Why am i blanking on lady's mantle. That's right lady's mantle and you walk through the garden in the early morning when the do has settled on the plants. And you look at a leaf of lady's mantle and it's like a work of art with all those perfect round drops on the leaf. There's a lot of different things that can cause that but usually it has to do with the surface of the leaf itself and and how it reacts when waterfalls on it the reason that some leaves have evolved to do. This is several fold first of all in areas like rainforest areas where it rains every afternoon. At four o'clock right. Yeah if a plant is repeatedly repeatedly getting wet a particularly in a place like a rain forest where is humid and warm. That's sort of the ideal conditions for fungal problems. For various. Right leaves fungi. And the fact that this water doesn't stay on the leaf but beads up and rolls off. That helps the leaf not to get leave diseases. That's perfect and the interesting thing. Is that in very dry places. This is a useful characteristic because the water lands on belief. Rolls right off. And where does it go. It goes to the root zone of the plant where it can be most useful and be absorbed so it's just another example of how amazing nature is and how this these characteristics have evolved in very different ecosystems helping the plant in each one of them but in different ways and i just think that is so cool is so
How to Care for a String of Pearls Plant
"Says a girl. I work with was throwing out a dying string of pearls plant rescued. It took it home. I cut the dead parts out and started watering it. And it started to come back to life but it's an eight inch pot which now seems way too big for the plant. Should i put it in a smaller pot or just wait for it to fill in. Well no if. I were talking directly with dana. I'd ask her how long or is this. The rim remnants of the original plant. That now looks skimpy in the pop. they can stand being a little bit of rebound now. I don't mean mashed up where those soil in the but but at the same time as a succulent there Capable of doing what she has dealt with Bless her tell her to blessed to levy that threw it out. Because that's a plant that can go on and on and on and what she did was exactly right to cut the debt out And encourage new growth even to the point depending on. How far up do you can bring visit is a penniless plant. You can cut it back up a little bit and cause it to start over again and this is almost an ideal time to do it. Our days are getting longer in terms of outside light coming in. We can always leave lights on more as a succulent. The plant does need water. No question about it and if little pearls don't don't expand. Then you know you're not giving it enough water if they expand nicely than. Don't push me on that. I would guess that in this age pot. She would probably not have to water more than every other week. Now as in watering any potted plant water thoroughly let it run through drain out into a pot of base stand. Whatever it may be men just let it start to dry again because as a succulent you can flat out. Kill them with too much kindness in terms of water Light wise. It's a very interesting plant. It can handle indoors wearing nicely. You only need to four hours of direct sun or let you say nearly direct sun in a given day thrives in house temperature Once the the we've gotten a little past this point maybe maybe a month from now she can and maybe should This plant now. I i always grab what i call the african violet low analysis. I they tell you to use x. Amount per i use half of x. And i will start fertilizing that plant it somewhere in the period of Oh late march early april. Get it going because it takes at least two weeks for fertilizer to catch up with the needs of the plant so even even could be done now if she has a place where she can keep it. Pretty good light Then the next step because it is as Any other plant would be being indoors as being a hanging planet. It can be dutiful all the way around three sixty degrees in unless she does not turn it. Maybe a quarter a third of a turn a week to the well to the window. Nearest in terms of full sun Fertilize every couple of weeks lightly. Clear on into early fall and then clinton and just enjoy the rest of the winter. So tell her. she's a winner. What the plants value is but she came out a winner And and i kinda sorry for the lead gave it up but everybody gets rid of a diet plant from time to time. And i'm glad that dana grabbed this
2021 Is the Year of the 17-Year Cicadas
"Know i was reading in the date newspaper this week while reading it online that Twenty twenty one is one of the big years for the cicada. mark is going to be is. This is the seventeen year. Well this is the the big daddy of the mall It has been off two thousand four. Two thousand four. Yes yeah. I think that was the year it was there were so many sound was so great. That the golfers emir field couldn't couldn't play their game right and i know people drove through some looted areas. Where there they had you know air conditioner on windows up and they could still here. The rascal screaming in the woods They they don't do much well practically no damage to the top of the tree. They have been in the ground as a well. Larval stage four seventeen years now. What they're doing down there is seen on tree. Roots usually not enough to be a desperate problem for the treat. Kinda co mingle in a way but when they start coming out of the ground sometimes almost all in one day or not all but start all in one day. They're they're They're crawling up trees. I've seen one sides of houses. I've seen troves anything. They can get up on so that when they come out of that show that they've been living in and put out their wings and it's it's really interesting it It's kind of awesome as a matter of fact if you find one crawling up a tree Go back in a few minutes and see if it has started to crack down the top of that show and this creature that comes out of there is going to be an inch long wings even longer than that It he's it's so ugly it's beautiful and they don't they come out they made and then and then they die so they're not eating on the tops. The trees the only damage that they will do is on young trees in particular the over positive or females. She can walk right down a limb and lay an egg in to the tissue of little stems and twitter and so on literally they over positive is strong enough to push the egg down inside the tree tissue from which then it hatches falls back to the ground. Does this whole thing seventeen years later. there are. The annual skaters are not nearly as awesome in numbers and
Unusual Perennials With Far Reaches Farm
"I'm kind of overwhelmed at the possibilities that you have in your list But i did see one sort of like theme ish thing that really caught my eye and recently my friend can drew's and i were talking on the show about some favorite of our early native spring. Perennials were both eastern gardeners. And we both love things with surveys. Arching stems like solomon's seal and such and you have a lot of things like that i think and i don't know if that's intentional. Or if you're obsessed with that too but can we talk about some of them like the polygon items and my anthem and you've you larrea. I die spor homes and whatever. I saw a lot of these things. Tell me about plants that look like that. Let's talk about that. Yeah yeah yeah all of those that whole kind of group. I mean they're like the disarms are now you know been separated out from the into a different family than Pulling games or solomon sales but but we kinda regard them as the sort of fulfilling the same function in the garden. They have the same visual Impact and appeal really and And we're just we are just smitten by them and and and for good reason. There's fear other things that Offer that In the shade garden Solomon's seals in particular Have there's there's over. Eighty species of solomon seals and within each species and their diversity is incredible. I mean it goes from the arctic circle down to tropical rainforest in vietnam and they can be. We've actually pitched a tent on flicking them hooker. I at thirteen thousand feet in eastern bhutan and that only gets an inch or two high in that really short alpine turf whereas We've got political. Tim did in our shade garden. And it's not done reaching its full mature size and we've been as tall as fifteen feet so that's pretty awesome. Thank goodness textiles for them and it said you have thirty one. Different polygamy items. And i was like and then you had an article on the website. I'll give a link with the transcript to it about one that i think it's cinemas The species is king knee. Ainum or juan neum or something It's like a twelve footer. With orange flowers that was surprising. Yeah that's really really nice thing. It's one that had been the had been regarded as a flagging kingham. It's it's distinct in that it has leaves. That are different than what we would see on on on the east coast for example Heard the leaves are kind of following this stem and their little alternate sort of things like every other step stepped up. The leaves up the stem but in keenum who aim vietnam again Their what's called a tesla arrangement of lease or their little like spokes on a wheel in quarrels ranked up the stem. And that's that's very distinctive right. Can you ain't them You know crashing. You know if it gets like ten twelve or even like in vietnam and fifteen feet. How do you. How do you keep those upright. And they've got a clever little adaptation not the end of each leaf tip at hooks into a little hook and it will actually hold onto surrounding branchless and of shrubs and so we have going up through having going up to really thin twigged shabby dogwoods and that can kind of self trellis themselves that way.
What is a Standard?
"Is a standard. You may have heard that term wondered what the heck is that. Do i buy a plant standard. Is that rosa standard. Is that hydrologist standard. What does this mean. This was on my mind recently ellen because somebody sent me a picture of their vegetable garden and at all four corners of their vegetable garden. They grow a cannabis plant as a standard. I have never seen that. Send you the picture. Because is first of all gorgeous. Second of all huge trunk things but we do. They live someplace where it's warm enough. That they don't have the cannabis doesn't have to come in in the window. No annual they do it as an annual you know they get stat big. Sorry i shouldn't have said that that distracted us so that all right. That's all right. So let's let's talk about what a standard is a standard basically is growing something so that it looks like a small tree. That's how i would define you prune up the limbs at the bottom of the plant as the plant grows and it may look like a lollipop. I've seen land tana's stole sold as standards and they look like know flowery lollipops on top of a trunk. You could find a rosemary. Standard as an herb. For growing indoors. It'd be much smaller. But again it still has that bare trunk at the bottom and it might be round at the top or it could be pruned into a square or diamond shape. It's actually it's a simple kind of topiary if you think about it yes it is and it's making a plant look like a small tree as you say with that bare trunk and then the top has the foliage and flowers. If it's a blooming plant many people grow tropical hibiscus as a standard in a pot on deck during the summertime and other tropical plants as well are commonly raised by at the grower as a standard and sold for container plants. Yeah and you see roses as standards. I think more often the smaller flowered roses not the giant ones and when i was growing up in new england. Lots of people grew hydrangea as standards but out in their yards not in containers and they would call them. Hydrangea trees which of course now. I want to say it's not a tree no matter how you grow it but but that was a really popular thing in new england when i was growing up. I don't know if it's still is. Oh it definitely still is now in the old days. They made those standard hydrangea by pruning ruining the lower limbs and leading one trunk Grow up now they grow the trunks. They graft whatever variety of the hype train peninsula onto the top of the trunk and so often. Now they are grafted. And you can find straight hydrangea peninsulas. As a tree form that's basically how they're referred to now at the garden center is a tree form and you can find lime lights. You can find firelight standards. Any number of varieties of the hydrangea peninsula can be purchased in that three four if people are wondering what a standard is now you
Why Are There Dark Spots on the Leaves of My African Violet?
"Says i have some black spots on the leaves of my african violet. Any ideas. well. I have one first off and out. Black is is maybe deceiving me here. A little bit but If if water cold water in particular out of the faucet which is nothing to touch but at the same time when it gets on a leaf of an african violet it causes spot the spot. We'll start off all bleach store whitish and then they can as they as that spot dis And it simply dies down into the leaf and maybe even through it. Sometimes i've seen goals and believes because that is my i. Guess now there can be other things No plant is immune to Diseases is on well uncommon for graphic violence to have a disease One of the things that when it comes down to a visual like that hard answer but on a warm day and this would be if both forty put it in plastic bag tied atop ticket into the garden center and have them take a look at it in case it's something going on and i'm going to guess more than likely disease than insects insect. You'd probably see Some evidence of chewing eating A hole through the leaf. And so on. So i'm gonna guess disease It is a little uncommon. So i i'm going to bet on water getting on leaves as being the first
Proteas: Celebrating These Botanical Shape-Shifters
"Fond of as we're speaking. You have a bunch pictured behind you wonderfully illustrated on the wall but the proteas. I have to say those paintings by a friend of mine. Vicki thomas and she's one of south africa's most acclaimed botanical straight. That's awesome absolutely wonderful person. Carry on all right. Shout out to vicki. Thomas amazing i can seem from here. They're great but you know this is a group. That is a little strange. They're beautiful most of the time. Some of them are culinary interests. A lot of people will be most familiar with them for the cut flower industry and their use in different floral arrangements but in terms of a group of plants. The proteas pro. Dac as a family. Really kind of encapsulates. Everything you've aimed for and more and unlike flagship species they're not getting nearly the attention. They deserve for the plate that they're facing as a family of plants. In a modern world they are a real bench of wackos I mean lynn. A cult them protea or called the jenness protea protea. Because of the greek god. Protease protease was a shape shifter so lineas such will this plump family comes in such a huge range of different weird shapes and forms in not justice flowers but its foliage and its fruits and all the rest of it but there's only one name for them knots the proteas and some of them are crazy and they have crazy names to i mean there's a there's a genus of pro. Tac out there. called megahertz. Sia megahertz probably one of the best plump names. I think that there is and they produce these crazy flower heads. They're not flowers there in or conflicts ince's to be more specific about it. They have these amazing floral brax. The king protea the national flower south africa is is a conflict essence so hundreds of individual flowers surrounded by these beautiful pink or red floral brock switch. A modified leaves banks is the same huge heads. One of the most flourish in fluorescence in the world is a species of fanciable granted. The bull banksia has up to three thousand individual flowers in the end in a single head. But they don't do things by normal standards than nearly always bird or mammal pollinated rather than insect pollinated. They don't use a micro rizal relationship. In most instances. There are a few that. Do they do crazy stuff with that chemical makeup and the way that they use chemicals in their in their systems particularly the way that these phosphorus they are almost completely made of licnen and that goes for the flowers as well as a the warden the leaves you know. This plant family is yeah wacko to me. Just like people. My favorite groups are just the wackos the one offs the strange ones. That are just doing things. A little bit differently than the rest or sometimes drastically differently than the rest. And i am so foreign to most of what this family has to offer. I mean i'll remember going to the huntington for the first time in going. Wait a minute there trees
Hidcote: Behind glass at the plant shelter
"Here though to talk about the plant shelter. Which is the domain. Where i am sure. Many of my listeners would be heading. I as enthusiasts of plants behind glass. They is far grander. I'm sure than anything that i can offer in my own. My own discard. And how big is the plot shelter in. What kind of things are in there. The plan shelter as off the top of my head about thirty meters boy. Five or six meters. It's made range runs from east to west and it has glass on this southern front but it has a solid war on the back on the northern the northern aspect. Well sounds perfect for so many plants. i bet it's a nice place to retire to Chillier days just fine things go and do the plant shelter for the weather's terrible. It's definitely one that you don't need to draw. Draw zone when when the opportunity presents itself. It's a love space nicely protected but is a particularly interesting sort of structure in itself in that it was designed. I imagine boy johnson himself. He had studied architecture in america before he came here and the front the south front that is laced actually can be removed and so becomes as who came out the garden rooms. It becomes another room in the garden during the summertime because it has that kind of open aspects which we then plant very much on the front and we can bring pulse right to the front of it said that their cascading out into the garden sound school just and is everything in pots or in bed. Is the beds in there as well. Yeah there are some beds. Although i think the foundations of seat to some extent contain those beds. But there's also a lot of pulse helps us with displays in terms and be able to move things around as things sort of off lowering. We're looking their best. What's looking good right now. We're now recording in the start of february. Yeah there's there's not a huge amount. We have done some work in that recently. A one thing that is actually incredibly striking is the halden. Bogia via lacy is just so vivid in its color it's Pending racine purple flowers just over at the moment that they're looking spectacular is not a big plant in bed. Or it's been trained up one of the pillars so Once we get to the summertime in glazed fronts komo fits sort of does a bit of both This evergreen climber that's twenty is way the pillar and we do 'em Holiday cuts on nas jay. So it's it's still making its way back up. The pillar feel like but still looking stunning and as flowering really well. Is that one of the challenges of an environment protected environment like that. I'm thinking back to my rhs level to hear protected environments of the challenge of overprotected environment. That you know things grow so well that you do need to hack them back a bit. I occasionally and get things back under control. Because you've got a limited space you've got to form that this not movable and even though you can take the front off in the summer there's only so much space yes. A number of climates make their way to the top instead of seemed to feel like they'd be better outside but identity then would think that when they get to the cold weather in the winter but things the jasmine which eater has incredible heady sent in the middle of summer is is amazing but was a real tyrant this year because it had gone way over the top of pillows and then it just created this mass which we then found a pigeon nesting in an embarrassing say. Do try and keep things a little bit more in control and we run that balance. All the time johnson was at an incredible plants person and he would have wanted to have filled it with with every innumerable varieties of plants. And we want to do the same but you will say well to be able to call them well and encouraged to grow in in the way that we can look off them so that they're not making Plant health problem than not to the harboring disease. All about or anything like
What to Do About a Shady Backyard Where Grass Won't Grow
"We also had a question. This week from sarah and she sent us some pictures to which is very helpful. Says fred my backyard is seventy five percent dirt. Grass is gone. What can be done now as we talked about pictures here fred. It looks like she has some very large trees or some larger trees and some large shrubs that may be giving quite a bit of shade in that area. Okay well that gives me a big clue especially if you can tell by the pictures. In terms of the size of the trees trees compete in two ways as shrubs and other things but at the same time Lawns are meant for open. Clear sunny skies for all intensive purposes. Now there are variations that theme but large trees shade grass so it cannot manufacturers much food they cause the atmosphere under themselves so to speak or or under the tree they cause little higher humidity for the most part grasp doesn't dry as early in the morning therefore subject more diseases of the leaf and so on and then they compete drastically compete with grass roots under under the tree Now having said that it's not impossible to go along. And i think she just flat out going to have to start over the first thing to do at where we can't see it for sure but if she can or if an arborist should be doing you can raise up with the head of the tree you can cause the limbs to be a little higher above the ground You can send the tree out and literally soon it out. Take some branches in appropriate places. Let more light down through the tree. Let more breeze blow through the trees dry grass encouraging better growth in the grass and so on it is however still very difficult in many cases under trees to grow on I have indeed on many an occasion where people prize the tree or they prizes position shading their patio evening etcetera etcetera where. We don't wanna hurt the tree at all. We will simply take out the grass. The remnants of the grass or just very lightly work the top two inches in terms of maybe some more organic material. some peat moss and so create a bed in which we're going to fly ground cover. They didn't matter of selecting the ground. Cover i'm gonna say such as myrtle pakistan eighty There are many many things that can be used but it comes time where you either manage the trees and check it the following year or two if the grass is growing better you you leave well enough alone. But as soon as those trees get a heavy hit on them again and continue to compete underneath. They're going to kill the law. That's just all there is to it for the most part. You just don't see lawns well. Lawn light grasses in the middle of wood so at that point you go with mother nature and created ground cover bed. It's well or what. I consider a total disaster would-be to take out the trees. That's that's not my first recommendation ever Rather work with them and on several occasions Without hurting the tree by covering the routes very much we have built up just slightly to get above the tree roots. Now one one of the infamous trees for lawn damage is norway. Maple they they just don't like grass. I swear it's written in their genealogy but They're they're so dense headed rooted and so on I've never allowed for more than two and a half inches of really good up soil being over the top of those roots. Because we didn't want to run a rotor tiller down through the roots and causes damage to the tree roots. So we build up just slightly In most cases now in one case the lawn slope the good bit where we add it only one inch. I'm going to say on the high side. And we put a little wall and put twelve inches of soil over the roots downhill side however Where the roots normally cover the entire area of the top of the tree. We kept the wall in under the edge of the tree. So that the roots that were exceeding the width of the crown could would not be damaged by extra soil. And it's been quite successful. That was done. Twenty twenty a couple of years ago and i've driven by their time or two cents and the bed is still doing quite well. they have gone on out toward the west side down side. All's well and they don't they don't about ruined their shoulders with the bumpy more and they don't ruin the trees roots and the grass is gone not to be worried about.
A Book for Beginning Flower Gardeners With Allison and Sean Mcmanus of Spoken Garden
"The recently invited sean. Alison to come on. Today is that they have a brand new book coming out called growing plants and flowers. And it's a perfect topic for a perfect time. I don't even think you could have predicted why it was so perfect. When you first told me you were working on this book but with covid. It's so perfectly timed. So why don't you give us a snapshot a little snapshot about the book. And then we'll we'll talk about all the things we love which is growing flowers. All those new gardeners out there especially from and our our book is called the first time gardener growing plants and flowers all know how you need to plant intended outdoor areas using eco friendly methods. I love it. It's just a catchy for his roles off you're right. I didn't mention the first part of the title is the first time gardener. And that's sort of been your audience all along through your your youtube channel and your podcast right. We definitely want to help beginning gardeners but we feel like the book can also benefit a wider audience. Well oh totally learn. Well i i think so too. And we'll we'll share a couple you know. Interior spreads for people to see on the On the show notes for today's episode. But i was looking at it too and thinking what you've you have. It is updated information even for people who think they know how to garden because maybe they have been. But you're integrating a lot of sustainable practices. I noticed in in also like a dish. Additional information pollinators. Maybe people who've garden for a long time just haven't gotten caught up on those those practices. Yeah that's true. Our book is such a range of topics really. You know. it's it's very broad view of a lot of different guarding practices. An older view of someone coming into gardening wanting to know more but not really understanding really how plants grow what they need to grow have had a handle them what to do. What impacts on the environment surrounding them. And how that impacts them versus how the impact themselves and the environment again an all hourly it. It's an interesting thing. A lot of people don't understand that as were soil moisture. and he. it's it's just it's amazing to think about things so he tried to come from broadview green all those things together to explain to a new guard. Yeah i just at the table of contents here. It's just kind of a natural progression of how you would get started and work your way through you know. I'm sure that people just want to get started and plant right away. But you're slowing slowing down a little bit and saying let's talk about the basics. I that is so true. I get a lot of questions on youtube and they're just want instant gratification. Instant answers and they're they're great questions. It's helpful to understand more of that broader scope of that foundation. Really just jump in. Let's do it's like well you're going to get more out of it if you understand that a little bit more i. Yeah it's interesting. I mean. I think people do maybe cheat a little bit and just go by that flat of primrose at home depot. Which is what we're seeing right now and you can do that. But that's a little bit different than committing to a garden or yeah so it's interesting. You really zeroed in on ornamental gardening. And there's no vegetable to be seen in this book right. We don't really speak to. I mean we love growing vegetables and then it's not what we teach
How to Start a Bonsai Garden
"Well i suppose there's limits but there's not much that can't be grown a bone inside trae when done carefully there are books it their classes on it So enjoy it. It's something to keep you to during the winter of any year and especially when we're so to speak trapped inside. I hope all of your being careful wearing masks. What your hands and all that good stuff. So let's let's just have some fun while we're doing now when i think Bone cy i think of like an evergreen type plant A pine or a spruce or something like that. So if i wanted to get started with bonsai what would you recommend. And how do you get started. Well mark let's go to those two seedlings i have run their deep deep in the debris of the beds. I knew they were there a year ago. Now they're they're this fall. When i cleaned up they are presently The juniper is i don't know maybe eight inches ten inches high Fairly narrow and upright like it's project and then the tax is lord knows which one Right now i can tell you. It's more of a horizontal grew. But i will dig those in the spring. Oh let's just say that being earliest probably march fifteen and then sometime hopefully before the middle of april while before they have gotten into really has it grew. Because i'm going to have to dig them. I'm gonna go out quite away sideways. And then we're way in to see where the roots are where their masked if there is a mass and then they will go right into the trays but they will have most of the soil that they started in shaking off off. Whatever i will then go to a very good mix of potting soil. Lots of lots of brigandage lots of water retention but not not sopping wet at any point in time. I will start them. I'm going to call it flat in the trade. I have several now old enough. That they're sitting above the edge of the trae by an inch and a half. They're starting to kind of look like a normal forest tree. In a very miniaturized way mine are not fussy. They're not sick. They would not be judged well in competition. They're just a lot of fun for me. So mark anything. Like that i have used The seedling of a privilege plant. I have used the ceiling will actually cutting that. I started of a A zillion now. Elliot's are a little tricky. I didn't have particularly good luck. This has been a while back. Haven't restarted that. But i have seen some magnificent zillions in bloom in bonsai trees. Pear trees maple trees. I tend when i'm looking for it myself. I tend to go for things that happen naturally. Small leaf and then by retarding its fertilizer and its water and so on. I can cause those leaves to be even smaller And then i have taken. What is this or rubber tree. Plant one of the indoor plants. And i have i think. Probably six or seven cuttings. That has now started to route. I'm looking for a proper trae. i'm gonna start a miniature forest of We'll see how that works out. So i may talk about it again along the course of this next year in terms of what kind of weapon having with the ceilings of this indoor plant which is a tropical They would have to come in before the temperature gets wet. Now let me tell you. I take mine outdoors in the summertime on a bench of the house. They get a full half a day. So they're in good shape and then they get shading the afternoon. So anyhow that being the sun factor. I leave them on the bench until the temperature in the fall. Hits forty five degrees on low night. Then they start coming in under the deck deck but under patio top and then into the house before that is the topic was come into the house and the others in on the ground in the compost bin. Half of it. I stack them usually flat on the ground. But a couple of my. I've kind of leaned in. And then i put about ten twelve inches of oak leaves over the top now scattered. I don't try to make out of it. All i wanna do is insulate them against fast freeze and thaw. And it's rare that i lose what in the wintertime so that's kind of the score and anybody can start them You will be digging taking either plants that are potted in a garden centre or whatever and there are many of those little ones that that you can start in the bone side trade. You just simply take them out of their pot. Usually wash off the soil of the roots. You could see what you're working with. Cut off the lowest ones work with the ones that are nearer the top of the soil in the container and then spread them out right on top of about a quarter of an inch of soil. Half an inch of soil in this container and then put some well now putting oil and then put some potting soil over them. Be sure very sure that the container drains They can be suffocated quickly with too much water. So big holes. For drainage i think screen over the top of that so they don't lose a lot of water and then i always put them on a tray indoors. They're they're bound to drop off excess water when i'm watering so always into a tray of their own For my furniture's safekeeping.
Bonsai Trees: A Privilege To Cultivate
"Your plants of the week. Well it is plants than this time and and it's on purpose I am privileged to have. Because i've kind of created them bone. Cy i bone side now. I'm gonna pretty loosely defined as a as it. Is i think a japanese turn. Perhaps if you go back far enough so chinese term but it boils down to a plant in a tree now. That's very very loose but in boils down to in the case of my plants i have various bone side dishes and well official ones as well as some makers on my part various old antique things The the shallow is just inch and a quarter. Most of them are about an inch and a half deep and then a couple of them. I kinda cheated a little bit us. Some old vessels if you will that are probably three and a half inches deep now that boils down to a mighty flat root system. Most root systems are flatter than we think in the first place even out in the forest and front yard and so on in this case. We're talking about several of my plants which have obtained a significant age for me. Now they're they're Growing in a tray the tray is not flat. Although i've seen that actually done where you very carefully drip water on to the root mass so it it just looks like it's just sitting in a pile of the soil but in any event it's a lot of fun. I have several different kinds of plants. I have Presently a juniper seedling and a text the seedling that i so to speak found this fall in one of my quick cleanup situations i left them going to dig them in the spring. I'm going to be very careful in doing so. They will probably have a root deeper than. I'm going to be able to have by dishes. But at the same time they're going to go into containers bonsai trees if you will and they will start their life on toward Hopefully three hundred years. And the reason i say three hundred is i had the good fortune of being the national arboretum. A number of years ago when it collection of i think few as sixteen is is memories of fading. But anyhow i think it was just sixteen major bone size now. They were in dishes little deeper three and four inches and maybe three foot wide cetera. These plants ranged up to as i recall three hundred and sixty four years of age now. How does that happen well that he picks his first son to take care of the daddy. Does this through the generations and they get that old and then they end up in an arboretum under very careful care and this this probably thirty years ago that i saw them So that when. I tell you that that few plants came here by ship on the high seas in trays protected boxes. If you will that collection of sixteen plants. If i remember right i was told they were insured for six million dollars because they are absolutely irreplaceable. All you can do with the insurance money as be able to start over again or by some some mid age when at only one hundred and fifty years so mark this is a. It's a fun thing to do. You can as i do. I try to create accent precipitate. Now there are forms factual forums and the the bone side collectors and growers Work with these forms wire they do all kinds of things to create the shape. They want usually. It's in one of the bonified classes. All of mine are simply trimmed for character. And i have the greatest fun of that. How well more than half our outdoor plants they are presently so to speak buried or under a pile of leaves in the end of the compost bin getting cold staying cold getting their their normal winter rest and then the the well tropicals are in here. Sitting right near where i'm speaking from they. They are in growth very minimal growth at this point and they The the beauty of these plants is. You do have to be a little careful. But i don't water them more than once a week. Some few that are a little bit larger trae per their size. I water even once a one and a half weeks. You wanna keep them growing for sure that you don't really want to push them certainly not this time of year. This is not gross. Time for normal plant. So i'm keeping them alive. I'm happy with them. They seem to be happy with me. i like to think they add a little clean hair to my my house but i'm not sure you just don't need quite get as involved as i have become. I got bitten by this bug. Probably thirty five years ago Have lost a few along the way but I have a. I think there are twenty total plants and and i do it for
Want Lots of Color, Try Begonias
"I know but before the program you and i were talking a little bit and you You also mentioned begonias. Yes by all means mark and thank you. My memory had faded. I've i'm quick to lose things anymore. yes the goal news In many many kinds and sizes there are the bulbous type that almost have to go in a shady area. They have great big fat flowers. Richest oranges yellows and whites and things that you can never see. They also have a pretty leaf. Then we come to a rooted well. Basically the normal rooted plants and they. They run All the way from little plants that again you still have to be in the shade. Now can go right out. In the full sun. Because breeding john Pinks reds and cetera also green-leafed or Purple leafed and so on and then the white pink and red flower colors. And so i'm on through some begonias. Now that will stand by high by fall I even had a perennial but going yeah And i'm gonna be tripped up myself here in terms of what it is. What is true name is but it is. It is permanent It has been growing in my yard for whole at least fifteen years under some pine trees now the pines are getting big enough shady enough and then route wise predominant enough that it's a little hard for us to do their thing but there there's angel wing My mind is just gone. Flaming crazy in terms of closing down. But they're the a family group. Whatever you wanna call on Is fantastic and then because i had one or two for life i was at busch gardens out in north west corner the country. I was admiring out from outside looking in through the glass At some begonias that were stationed up. Pretty inside i was seeing flowers. That were five inches across engine. A half to two thick kind kinda domed over magnificent colors. I'm standing there in awe and the lady came by to water and ten to them and she said d like begonias. I said yes. And i'm off the she said well. If you're all these you should have been here last year when they were really great lordy lordy.
What Exactly Is an Epiphytic Plant?
"I thought we should talk about epo. Fights elon because we have frequently referred to a plant. Oh this is an epic fight or this plant is epic right. Yeah i think we need to go back and tell really talk about what that is and what some of the common plants. Many of us grow plants that are epa fights routinely right. Yeah i would say that. My probably my favourite house plants are ninety percent of them are epa fights because they are by nature so very easy to grow indoors so undemanding many of them so beautiful and in keeping with our greek theme from the last segment. I will say that. In greek at the fight means upon plant. So it's a plant that in nature grows on another plant not not a parasite. It takes no nutrition from the plant. It just uses it as a place to grow. It makes another plant. It's home so that's the bottom line here now. Why then would a- plant that makes another plant it's home. Why would that make a good house plant. Well think about it if it's growing on another plant the first thing you know is that's an under canopy plant. Because it's growing on a tree or shrub in their leafs of leaves above it so that means you'll need a south facing window or bright west facing window. That house plant is going to be satisfied with less sunlight than full sun and most of us in our houses do not have a lot of full sun and the second thing is if that plant grows on another plant its roots are exposed to the air and that means that by nature. Epa fights are generally very drought tolerant. And that means it's easier for you to care for because you're not going to have to worry about it watering it. Every three days it's going to be a seven to ten day watering plant because its roots need to dry out a little bit in between watering so those are the first two things i think of. They're not that fussy about because they don't grow in this right many episodes you can plant in a light soil. This mix some some of them do better in a little bit of bark. Mix some of them. You can actually mount to a piece of bark and hang it. So there's a lot of options for different fights in how you want to grow them another thing that you can sort of. Assume about a epa fights is that they don't need repotting all that often because they don't need fresh soil because they're used to growing in small crevices however you do need to be careful because if you have an ethic plant like say christmas cactus or thanksgiving cactus right. Those are epa fights and they've been in the same pot for a long time and that potting media that you used was high inorganic matter barak and pete and everything and it starts to break down over time which means that there is less oxygen in the mix that can be a problem for an epiphanic
The 19-year evolution of a retail florist with Kelly Marie Thompson of Chicago-based Fleur Inc.
"I open to flourish in two thousand and two. So that means we're just about to approach our nineteen th anniversary so we're really excited about that It won't be a normal celebration obviously but We're still really excited Yeah i opened. You know back then. I was twenty two years old fresh out of college and studied history. And i had worked in a grocery store So that's where. I really learned my background on floral. And you know. I learned just things like how to pronounce l. strom area or burnham you but i didn't have a huge training or background on. It came to design outside of my art history degree and painting degree. That's just be influencing you all the time just that discipline just cover different medium. Now i do exactly and it's It's really shaped my understanding for color and depth and texture. And i've i bring that with me every every single design Yes i opened up I had a small storefront. I really thought we were going to be a bucket flower shop on because you know boutique florist. Were really thing that long ago at least not in chicago. There were a few but it wasn't as popular of business as it has certainly grown into. No i and i do want to ask you. What do you mean by boutique because Would you know that's a term that means probably a lot different you know definition than what it is today so yeah. That's a great great question. So when i when. I came up with the idea of opening our retail boutique. I knew i wanted us all bucket flowers sort of just hand ties. Ready to go But i definitely wanted to include. Heavy selection of gifts lifestyle goods Even back you know eight nineteen years ago. I always knew that it wasn't just about flowers for me. It was always about bringing people together and gatherings and parties so as we've grown throughout the years our collections have grown and our offerings have grown. And when i'm when i'm purchasing for our retail. I always have in the back of my mind. Like how can this assist in a gathering. How can this assist in communicating and being a part of. You know the other person that i'm inviting into my life. You know Every day so it's it's really You know obviously weddings and special events or celebrations. That bring people together but are boutique is equally as important for that experience as well. So in your product mix you have a more lifestyle items that you think kind of support your flowers and vice versa. Exactly yeah lots of serving pieces for dinner parties A couple of years ago brought in fine jewelry so we now sell engagement rings which is really special part of the process. Wow oh my gosh. That's a that's an endeavor was a scary thing. It was a goal for a very long time of mine. But it's always been a dream to have somebody start their entire process of getting engaged in having flair as part of that story All the way through the last dance when we're able to help service their floral to for their wedding. Oh my goodness so. Are you in the same retail space when you first opened nineteen years ago or have you found expanded on. Come out front. Yeah we've moved twice actually Our first location the building had sold so we had to shift out. That was after. I believe three years and then we moved. We were in our second location for ten And then the landlord actually had just kind of decided they were going to move into a different direction. And honestly at that time. I really thought about closing. It was not my decision to move and there was not a lot of Opportunity in the neighborhood that we were in that i saw that was the right fit for us so i had to make a really big decision of kind of go bigger. Go home If we wanted to continue our retail and special events. And i'm really glad that i kept going with it i. It came very close to say goodbye and to the retail side thing. Oh yeah i was really just. I had a big heart to heart and I drove up to michigan for the night. I'm not too far from us in chicago and drink a little too much wine one night and wrote down all the pros and cons idea. I woke up the next morning. Just ready to go just ready to sign the new lease. I'm so we've actually. We started out with eighteen hundred square feet and we now are between both are retail and our studio. We are thirty three hundred square feet. They're kind of adjacent to each other. Exactly what is it in chicago. The logan square neighborhood on and we've always been in that neighborhood. I was really drawn. I lived in the time when we opened and i was always drawn to it because events cultural diversity and very strong artistic community that both of those still
Can I Leave Cannas in a Pot for Winter?
"Poor fred we had a question this week from our friend joe et and she says fred last summer a friend gave me a large flower pot planet with three canas. The kansas bloomed well during the summer and in the after they'd been frosted and the foliage turn brown and dry. I cut the foliage off. Since this was about the first of december i took the pot and put it in the garage so it wouldn't freeze and i stopped watering it. Well now it's the end of january. And i just remembered the potus still in the garage. So what now. Should i take the canons out of the pot and let them dry out or do you think might grow again if i leave them in the pot until next spring when they can set up beset outside again well no She has several options and the last one is probably going to be the best for her. They the only concern. I have is that it'd be an attached garage and the pot is sitting somewhere toward the house wall so definitely can't freeze 'cause canas Every once in a while they'll come through a winner outdoors but it's it's kinda rare so let's assume they have not been frozen Therefore all she has to do is put them if they aren't putting against the house wall or in some other bit of shelter so that the pot can't freeze period now in the. We're assuming that it won't freeze and can't She can indeed lead them right in the pot and let them start over again now by that meaning if she wishes she can take that pot indoors. Anytime let's just say oh mid march late march and start letting it warm up. Soon as the soil is warmed up water but sparing no out on third walla walla thoroughly. The first time to get them definitely moist then sparingly from there on So that you don't give root rot and things as they start to grow they will then come above the soil and get started to where when it comes mid may. She didn't put him right back out on the portrait patio. Or whatever as she wishes so We assume all's well it sounds like she did the right things I would not let them at this point There there might be an exception to that statement but they can run dormant and dry. And i've even put them in old potato bags that are just nothing but mesh From time to time. I put him under the under the family room and then on nails on the floor joyce and hang them there so that they run dry for several months which is fine then once you start growing them though you must really let them keep going and then as with any indoor plant tennis can grow fairly fast once they get going so she should turn those pots or the pot Oh at least once a week quarter. Turn third turn whatever. Keep the sun coming at the plant from all directions so they stay straight up and mid may she can take about dick. Probably almost empowered by that and If she didn't want to bring him into the house could she just wait until during the spring and just put them outside. Yes by all means mar. Thanks for asking. Because i i kinda ducked on fast at my mind. Yes she can definitely wait and put them out Now in in that case Well let's go with the fact that normally we consider ourselves a frost free from may fifteen on in it will take them probably two weeks or even maybe some more to start showing up above the pot. She could start them. Let's just say first of may get a moist get him the pots getting warmed up. Get them started to grow. Then put him out the middle of may without doing the extra time so yeah She can leave him in the pot. She could dump the plot out if she wanted to. But if they have had a good summer No one thing. Canas are fairly robust when they get going if she had three in a pot. Mentioning is a big but Probably okay but know that depending on the strength of that pot canas by the end of this coming summer having grown well again could start to crack that pot from inside. Just there there Bit like a tree root under a sidewalk they they just keep expanding and They don't care what they push on. And if it's breakable. It will so i would say she. She's done things right. All she has to do is bring them in whenever she wants To get him started or just wait till may one plant them outdoors and all should be well.
Ep. 306 - The Art & Science of Rock Gardening
"Fantastic because my book was released this tuesday and in less than twenty four hours most vendors completely sold out of it. That's amazing. And i think everyone who purchased a copy so far i know there's a lot of delays in shipping various vendors. Unfortunately i have no control over that. I just ask that you stay patient. I'm sure it's gonna work itself out. It's just the nature of the beast right now. Books are still for sale through mango. The publisher and i'll put up a link in the show notes in case you still want to get your hands on a copy where it's not sold out. But i can't guarantee those are gonna last for much longer so thank you again. But today i'm super excited for my guest because it's been a long time in the making joining us is. Penny odi collide. He's penny odi is an amazing plants. Man he's the senior curator and director of outreach at the denver botanical garden and he is also the sitting president of the north american rock gardening society and that is exactly what we're going to be talking about today rock gardens now. It's easy to picture. Rock gardens in your head is a bunch of succulent or cushion. type plants sitting in rocky soils. But as you're going to hear it is so much more than that. It really focuses on an amazing subset. Plants that share similar habitat needs and therefore are shaped in similar ways by their environment. And as you're going to hear the rock gardening society is not only just a great place for gardeners people who love growing plants. It's also a safe haven for so many of earth's threatened plant species. I can't think of someone who is a better ambassador for this group and rock gardening in general than panayote. so let's just jump right into it without further ado. Here's my conversation with patio. I hope you enjoy all
Echinacea With Same Hoadley-A Way to Garden With Margaret Roach March 1, 2021
"Hopefully as manager of horticultural research at mount cuba center in delaware along time native plant garden and research site where he just completed his report on a trial of seventy five different echinacea before joining mount cuba status lead horticulturist for longwood gardens hillside garden and he received his degree in sustainable landscape horticulture from university of vermont. Hi sam thank you I'm thanks for having me. Yes and lucky you to have one of the great jobs horticulture. i think no. I feel very lucky And as we both know. George did a pretty fantastic job putting this program on the map and You know my turn to carry the torch and it's very exciting to be to be stepping into this role. yes well. I love the mount cuba trials. And i love mount cube. I i visited there when it was founded really as a native plant center for the first time that i came so i mean wow what a place so So this is not the first time about. Cuba has looked at echinacea. Is it the cone. Flowers are trialed them so tell us the scope then and now what's been done. Sure so our first echinacea trial or at least our first one was one of the first times we really tried. Plants or genus formally Those there were two early trials. There was astor and echinacea The that first trial took place from two thousand seven to two thousand nine. And i think it incorporated about forty eight different species and cultivars that were available on the market the at that time And those are two initial trials. We looked at horticultural value. Only we weren't looking at The ecological aspects of the plants As much as we have in our recent trials so it's been about a decade or a little bit more so since that initial echinacea trial and a lot more echinacea have been on the market. So it's almost not that the plant not that the initial trial was irrelevant. As soon as it came out but a lot of those plants aren't available anymore and there's been a lot. More plants introduced since then so we felt a good idea to revisit echinacea as a trial. include some of those newer Introductions and also include a Pollinator aspect to our report. Yeah well so. Probably the most common chia's per perea the purple cone flower. And you know. I read in your report. That the word for echinacea comes from the greek word for hedgehog. Yes hedgehog And or a chin. Yeah which i think is a perfect name. That makes a lot of sense. I mean looking at the the cone on the in the cone flower. Yeah so it may be one of the country's most recognizable native wildflowers wherever anyone lives but it's not a widespread native. I don't think like it's not native in the northeast where i live or a new england. i don't know if it's native in delaware but i was looking at range maps of echinacea peru. I think there's a university of kansas scientists. Kelly kin sure. I'm not sure how to pronounce his name. And he has incredible range maps of all the species of echinacea and other natives. And it's not like it's across the whole country. Is it right. A lot of the bulk of Echinacea are really kind of centralized in the central united states Down through the gulf coast states and into the southeast united states on there was One species you Occurred fairly locally but unfortunately it was only a historic current leaving god. I was actually observed in Parts of pennsylvania Before it it was extirpated from the state. but yeah they're they're fairly widespread. Different species are obviously more localized than others But many of them do really beautifully. Outside their natural ranges on into gardens in the northeast and in the mid atlantic and i think the interest of of them is like in herbalism and other things have brought them into gardens and in some places. They've naturalized and so on and so forth but just point out it's not like from coast to coast. This is a native american plant literally. I mean it's right. Yeah does well in a lot of various though. And it's kind of become known as a very recognizable wildflower so not content to leave well enough alone commercial. Nursery breeding programs have kept introducing more and more and more and more so-called purple cone. Flower as in echinacea per purry up. But oh my goodness like. They're not even purple anymore and centers. Keep looking to me. We just said sea urchins or whatever but they look like someone cheerleaders pom pom to the middle middle of a mess. Out a little bit about that. Sure there's you know. I mean i think since the nineties there's been a lot of breeding going on with echinacea And that really kind of started on one of the major pioneers of that. That effort was Dr jim all at chicago botanic garden as well as other nurseries around the eastern united states but they really started to play with Crossing two or more species of echinacea. She's total in one specie in particular really started to allow breeders to bring in these novel colors like the reds and the oranges and that was Echinacea paradox It's the only species of echinacea. That's naturally occurring Outside of the you know pink to purple spectrum. It's actually A pure yellow flower. So those genetics allowed for these kind of newer colors to start being introduced And then you know double flower forms were. I believe i found in europe and Now there i think one of the first ones was a pink Was pink flowered form. And
Episode 174: celebrating four years of On The Ledge
"Thanks for joining me. I'm your host. Jane perron and i've been chatting about plants on this podcast since the twenty eight february twenty. Seventeen in this episode. I'll be looking back to see how far we've come. We'll find out an updated top ten most popular episode. We'll hear from jackie in meet the listener. And if you hang on 'til at the end as requested by a few you'll be able to hear my are real embarrassing. Thanks to lynn cat and abigail florence. Both in the he left to light full reviews for on the ledge in apple podcasts. And welcome to my new patrons this week alice. H became a superfan and camilla. Bobby taylor emma and randolph all became legends. Thanks also to david who made a one off. Payment var code dash dot and all the debates for how to go about supporting the show financially and in other ways can be found in my show notes which are at jane. Perron dot com. Many of you have been in touch to say that you've thought that sound effect just played was the sound of me pouring myself a cup of tea. Well visit interesting one. No i probably go on about t just as much as any other english person. But i can confirm that sound. Effect is actually meet pouring water from one of my very special copper watering-can into i think it was into a kind of vessel of some kind done as a sound effect to try to indicate some element of bordering plots. I'm not quite sure what was going through my head when i get a chance of just had a cup of tea. I should've done then. But i will record the sound of myself pouring a cup of tea so you can compare and contrast thank you to all of you who've been untouched to comment on that sound effect now. Do you remember this. High poesies sanguine. Lente justina margin. Atta a s- need us. Never lapiz exult tartar. No this isn't an early draft of harry potter and the half flood prints but a selection of latin names for house clans there many indoor plants with latin names. That are intriguing. Beguiling sexy even but to me. The most dramatic in mind boggling wall is monster galicia sula. Actually i think you'll find. It's pronounced mold stereotypically cssr well. I was cringing a little bit as i listened back to that second episode of on the ledge which came out in march twenty seventeen. I hope i've improved my sound quality a little bit since then but on the other hand. Maybe it's not so bad because this remains one of the most popular foods ever of on the ledge in episode one hundred. I gave a top ten of most popular episodes though. I thought it might be a nice idea to kick off this episode with an update. Here we go. The countdown begins at ten back in june twenty nine teen in the hundredth episode episode. Seventy on house. Plot hoarding was at number ten. But that's draw right out of the top ten and been replaced by episode one hundred and forty four underrated. Houseplants now as i remember that episode was one that was a bit of a lost minute substitution when another interview fell through so just shows you you never know what's inspired a last minute. Ideas are going to work at nine. It's episode one hundred. Nineteen how to give your house plants. A health check again. I think that was another episode. I did pretty much off the cuff. So are you getting a vibe about how i run on allege here yes fly by night is the word on. Then at number eight it's episode ninety-eight on the science of plant propagation with the wonderful american horticulturist. Leslie hallard so there you go. People want to know about plant. Science new in at number seven is episode one nine pepperoni as part one. Oh yes that was. When i visited the wonderful sally williams and her national collection of pepperoni is in the pink district. So that just shows how popular those plants are and talked to. It's not in the top ten but it does include that all important information about who must pot propagation which is such a key method of propagation for me. Now so i and many of you have a lot to thank sally williams for and then episode eighty two comes in at number five growing hoyas aka the wax plant. That's when i interviewed doug chamberlin hoya grow extraordinaire of among hoyas still really popular episode. I think since that episode are probably quadrupled my own hoyer collection and hot news. If you're into heuer's there's another hoya heavy episode on. Its way next week. I will be speaking to ellen. Zakho's who is another hoya fan and she's got a huge hoyer tattoo as well. Now episode eighty-two was at number one in the chart from the hundredth episode. So it's dropped back but still showing how popular hoyas. Aw and at number four it's episode. Ninety-nine thousand nine. Houseplants for low light. Yes we all want to know what plants put in those dark corners. And that was where. I spoke to lisa stein. Cov the house blank guru about plans that will cope with a lack of natural light. Then a number three. It's the very first episode of own the ledge episode one on terrariums when i was a wee baby podcast with my training wheels very much in place. I haven't done much on terrarium since then. A really should put that right but it's great to hear. The people are still listening to that very first episode in at number two. It's ten commandments for house. Plant care this was a really great episode. I interview judy. Feldstein of house. Four one one dot com and she offered up her top ten tips for house plants. And this episode obviously touched a nerve for many of you and then the suspense is killing you. I'm shaw would probably isn't. Because i've told you but anyway at number one the most popular episode ever on the legends episode to moan stood at the lucille the swiss cheese plant. So they go. That is the top ten. It's interesting comparing with two thousand nineteen because the only episode that is in both of those charts from june twenty nineteen and today is the growing. Hoyas episode isn't that interesting if you want to have a look at the chart and listen to all of those episodes do check out the show notes for this episode and you can click through to the relevant shows now. It's time to meet this week's listener. My name is jackie new york
Unusual Perennials With Far Reaches Farm A Way to Garden With Margaret Roach February 22, 2021
"Today and sue milliken are the proprietors of far reaches farm in port townsend. Washington and also of the nonprofit far reaches botanical conservancy that seeks to acquire and conserve horticultural and botanically important rare plants. Many of them from asia. I'm so glad to. Have you join me kelly into get acquainted. Welcome oh thank margaret. I'm really very pleased to be here today. Yes so i we. If people don't know where port townsend in it's a wonderful place. It's kind of a ferry ride across from seattle. Yes if it is and it's a it's a. It's an old victorian seaport and it has Just very charming. We've got some actual architecture here with old brick buildings. It's quite beautiful. yeah. I haven't been in a long time but i remember it fondly so i've read that you and your partner sue milliken met in nineteen ninety-seven on a plant hunting expedition in union province in southwest china. And when did you start far reaches the nursery Tell us a little bit about sort of the quick history. Well we'll i'll. I'll leave out some of the more salacious details really quite interesting We We found an immediate connection and bonded over. You know this dry spiny mound of erin area. Fungi to a pass and unanimous. Who else would love that plant. But we each did so we knew we were meant for each other There was it was a little bit time later about two thousand three. We acquired this property here. Within the city. Limits of our towns are our six acres and started building the nursery of You know a couple of years later from that yes. Is it true that although you have this remarkable extensive collection largely shade plants that you purchased six acres with just one tree on it and cut that tree down. Is that a true story. It's a sad but true story. Yes it was a huge cottonwood. Which isn't isn't the most stable or durable long-term tree so we had to take that interest in shade gardens We had to build this kind of massive last house structure to house our our shed garden. And it's real actually worked out really quite well. We don't have root competition from Shade trees So about how. Many kinds of plants confess kelly. How serious is this issue of yours. How many tax do you have in the collection. Do you think. And how many are for sale at anyone given moment in the catalog in the nursery well. It's it's kind of difficult to really say. I mean i guess how you define tax if you get into You know we. We do a lot of We do some breeding and so many have. Hundreds of seedlings are evaluate. I guess each of those could be taxed but not counting those we've got. I don't know seven or eight thousand anyway okay. Different kinds of plants. Okay yes oh. Yeah and in any given year summer for Propagate more of some to have them for sale sort of varies i mean. I don't think you have seven or eight thousand things for sale in the catalog to you at any one. We'll do we'll do a few hundred usually and it's it's it's plants it come on now we offer. We don't have a bit put everything on the cadillac at once. It's just as plants grow and propagate and get Of size than we add. Add them on. We don't do anything and really large numbers We have a kind of an attention deficit issues so a couple of flats. And we're we move onto something else. and a lot of these. A lot of these plants are rare because they're difficult to propagate or take longer to finish in a in a pot to be saleable So but we work on those anyway. So it's It's a. It's a bit of a challenge but we find it very rewarding. So i know that you two are focused next on the nonprofit. The far reaches botanical conservancy. And i wanna talk about that. A little later in our discussion You know the the effort to sort of more the nursery into into that. But i i wanna talk about some plants.
Gardener Growing: Uprooted, With Page Dickey
"On gardening and co founder of the garden conservancies. Open days scheme in the united states. She joins me today to share more about her own gordon. Life journey and the many sometimes surprising ways in which we as gardeners grow including by trial and error through lifelong learning in relationship to plants and as described in her newest book up rooted she shares the sorrows and joys griefs and expansions of leaving one beloved garden and finding yourself rooting into your next garden differently but still lovingly. I am so pleased to be with you today. Welcome page. I'm so honored to be with you jennifer. So you know. I've i've given you a little introduction but would you share with listeners. Your current relationship with plants and gardens both personally and professionally at at this current sort of moment in your life page. Well sure. I moved to a new place. New garden Five years ago or almost six years ago and started from fresh water having been taking care of a garden another garden for thirty four years so so it's all been very much of a fresh start this time and a wilder land in that we have meadows and woods fields and woods and i've made small gardens in the last five years around the house but more important i've become familiar with and nurtured the fields and woods that surround the house and Learned a great deal from discovering the wildflowers. The grass is the plants that grow in those two habitats actually several habitats. That are here that are brand new to me Renew because where we have a cow carriers soil meaning. We're on limestone and I've never had that before. And we're also Northern more climate so it's colder which has its ups and downs. So it's it's a new adventure in in my gardening life. Yeah so i would love to. Have you take us back to some of your earliest experiences. That that grew you into a person for whom this would be a calling professionally and personally throughout your entire life and maybe i would ask you to start by reading. The section in the book about your aunt helen. I'm happy to do that. Jennifer my sweetest memories of growing our our time spent with my mother's sister. My beloved on jalan editor small eighteenth century cape cod home in hingham massachusetts. She was lovely looking as a young woman. -ccomplish graduating from wellesley college with honors in one thousand nine hundred twenty three where she developed a love of classics history and poetry. She never married but had many friends and was last active all her life supporting the arts and land conservation in many ways. She was the opposite of my mother industrious but reserved at a large party with no interest in the trappings of society. Her beauty had faded. Some what when. I knew her her figures short and generously wide a beatrix potter of a woman who dressed sensibly in woolens for the country life. She led mornings with on. Helen's were spent walking with her two bearded collie on trails. She carefully maintained through thirty acres of mature oak and beech woods behind her house. And it was on these walks. That i learned from her the names of wildflowers and birds. I remember one warm day. When i was quite young wrestling with her on a fragrant bed of pine needles in the woods while she taught me the lord's prayer. I am agnostic at best. But i have to this day. A fondness for that prayer mornings at helen's were also Breaking baking bread a sensuous occupation. I learned to love in those visits and meals. We're inevitably delicious. Thought out and celebrate a daily using vegetables and fruit from her garden where she was gardner. And i mostly remember. Spring borders pool have long wards jacob's ladder and virginia bluebells interspersed with myriad small bulbs that had naturalized sylla's cayenne doxa's grape hyacinths. I remember to sitting with her on the terrorist outside. The kitchen shelling peas popping in my mouth. As many as i dropped into the colander. I i dabbled in drawing and painting with watercolors spin hanging with my aunt. Accu an occupation. She enjoyed throughout her life. Evenings were spent reading out loud after dinner. Es nasty when. I was young the five children. It and the nix the carpet later. There was austin and trollop to fill our nights one day in her mid eighties on jalan called me with a triumphant news. She had climbed the maple that bowed. It's slim's over. Lead rocked by her driveway. She said she'd been thinking of doing it for years on her. Last visit to duck hill in her early nineties. We walked slowly around the garden her arm entwined with mine. Oh pagey she said. If i were just a little younger i'd have you dig me up a piece of this and that i bring this up because my aunt was my mentor. She taught me about everything. I still love in life from dogs books to food gardens to pads in woods but also because i think it was at her home in hingham spending time with her there that i i knew i loved new england. Thank you thank you very much for that. It is a really moving section of the opening part of the book and really sets the tone for Both your incredibly knowledgeable Plants manship but also your love of the literary side of it the artistic side of it and the communal part of it as well i think so you were you were born and raised in around philadelphia and your parents weren't particularly gardeners but luckily and helen into the gap Tell us a little more about your your progression from there into what would become your your endeavors before and then into duck hill Before we get to church I don't know why jennifer but right from the beginning. When i was child i had a partial. You might say. I had a leading toward plants. I remember acquiring house plants in my bedroom. When i was a little girl and when when i was about twelve i made my i asked. My father is up in new hampshire where we had a a log cabin summer house and i asked my father if i could make a garden. And if he said he of course he said yes. And i the odd thing was. It was an opening in the woods. And i felt the need to to design something and so i. I got a wheelbarrow. I called all these stones. These the biggest pieces of granted. I could lift and i made a circle with these with these stones and then i made a path with them. Maybe that was the beginning of my pats arden's and then harf fis me to think now i went into the woods and dug up polly potty for send orchids god only knows what else and trans planted it to this little garden.
Caring For A Variegated Rhododendron
"Of the week is eight plant and yet it represents a great number of others. I happen to have gotten a hold of a variegated rhododendron a number of years ago. Little thing at that time and i was almost unaware of their their ability to do what they do. My now is approximately three feet tall. Approximately two and a half feet across the top. And that's just what rhododendrons new and more for that matter however this one is decidedly variegated. Now it's it's a fairly rich more or less normal rhododendron green but then it has cream streaks edges tips spots. It's just. It's just a plant that i can. Well i know where it is. And it's kinda hidden from traffic. But i think even traffic in the street they could see it. It's it's light and break. It is much color as you think of color chart but it's quite attractive this time of year and it's almost the only thing. Well i certainly in. My case is the only thing in that area that is really attractive and interesting at this time of year. The the one trick to them and i i had to learn this from the same guy that supplied oh four years or so after i had it was starting to show more green leaves and i say well what's happening with the plane. He said well. You're not bruening off the green of wait. A minute said well. They will revert fairly easily. So see full. Green leaf look to see if there are others on that same stem that are variegated. It's still you leave it if not cut it off. That's why i've been doing that. So i mostly a variegated plants which this time of year not else's much sparking With color it's it's very interesting and something. I recommend all variegated plants per the need for some interest this time of year
In Situ Community-Based Oak Conservation At The Morton Arboretum
"Suited to do some major impact stuff for a bunch of trees and the main focus of what we were connected over our oaks because the icn just did their assessment or trying to get this out that what is it. Forty one percent of species across the globe are facing extinction or at least of conservation concern. And i just spoke with your colleague dr murphy westwood about a lot of exit. You so taking trees to other places to help conserve them. But you are position in a way that you're doing a lot of the institute the other side of that coin which is also desperately needed. So let's take a closer look at just. What in situ conservation means to you before we look at some of the species. You're working with right. So the global tree conservation program in the morton arboretum. We have a very specific approach to how we try to save threatened tree species. We've i go through prioritizing because unfortunately we cannot save all the sixteen thousand three species on the planet and we wish we could right now but we don't have the money or manpower resources so we need to make some hard choices of what we are going to folks and that is We used a lot the redmi sting which is why you talked about with murphy and the new red list of folks which is one of our target tax on groups was published and my team members did that and so now we have a clear picture of which species need our help the most so then two approaches we can take our well. Try to go and save these species right were they occur and that's go in situ conservation so within their native range but also complement to that. Sometimes we just can't that we were not able to save the species right where they occur. So then we can compliment that with ex situ conservation. Which is what murphy. Also talked a lot about hoochie. You can do see the preservation and you can save species by having specimen symbol. Tammy berea so. My job is to focus on the in situ conservation part so where we do is that we select right now. We have tools as if he projects with two different species off endangered oaks which are coworkers brandy. Gi which is endemic micro endemic old that only occurs in the tip or huckabee -fornia peninsula in the california lack in mexico. Scowls working mogo. Well people those these resorts drink margaritas. And they have no idea that fifty kilometers from there There is these amazing biosphere reserve called sierra laguna forest biosphere reserve. And we've seen that reserve. There is the majority of the distribution of these core brand This is a very dry arid. Ecosystems very scrubby and so these are tree only occurs on by edges obese announced streams. And when you think of a stream or a river you imagine that yes. What but he's he's really funny. I guess share some pictures of you just sad there dry and only when there's hurricanes or weather events then erase a lot there and it feels app and it crashes the mountains a mountain range right there and so all. The rain gets dunked on everything. Floods the roles get destroyed. And then you pass this they rebuild it like with the sand like they have. Ob sands so anyway abc's where these oak grows but the problem is that because it's a very dry ecosystem that is also where the ranchers want to have the ratchets. That's there's water so they put these long hosts. And that's how they watered needle gardens or wetlands. Show there's a conflict between the place where the you know the specific habitat for these species. And where the ranches are and the problem. The ranchers be street because he'd provides shea in
What is humidity and how much do our plants need?
"So humidity just means how much water vapor is there in the air. How many water droplets are there. And you might have heard of absolute humidity that just means the amount literally the amount of water in the air measured either by grams per cubic meter or grams per kilogram. But this doesn't tell us the whole story. And that's where relative humidity comes in. And this is the number that you get as a percentage and it tells us the degree to which the air is saturated with water in other words if relative humidity is one hundred percent that means that the air is completely saturated with water vapor as much water vapor as there could be at that temperature and those loss rewards really key because colder air holds less water then warmer air. So that makes sense. I mean basically what you need to know is if you have the same amount of water in a very hot room. Relative humidity will be lower than if you are in a cold room. I'm what's the usual relative humidity of our homes. Well it does vary it. Depends what kind of climate you're living in. What kind of heating and cooling mechanisms you've got but usually you'd find it. Roughly around the forty to fifty percent mark and of course the million dollar question is how much humidity does the average house plot need. Well it's hard to generalize but generally somewhere between forty to sixty percent is fine for an awful lot of plants. I mean this birth bearing in mind. That's the reason why these plants have lasted so long as house plants just because they can cope with conditions in our homes on. The test is usually just feeling those plant leaves if they are thinner than a piece of very fine tissue paper then. That's probably blonde that. These high humidity thinking maiden heffernan some of those players of the miranda group here and the thicky you go on the leaf then the less. They are going to be worried about humidity because they've got to waxy cuticle and that avoids the plot losing too much water to that dry air. It's worth remembering the reason why plants need humidity in the first place is because they have these pause in their ski- surface of the leaf the martyr as they're called and when the air around the is dry that means they tend to lose moisture out of those pause so relative humidity is one of the factors that affects what's called transpiration this process of moisture being lost through the smarter is just one of the factors that can impact it though is include things like light and temperature so that's the basics on humidity. But what can we do to increase humidity for those plants. That need