Our First Phalaenopsis Orchid

Posted by Jordan | Saturday, August 30, 2008 | 2 comments »

This beautiful Phalaenopsis Orchid is our newest plant and the first plant we have purchased since moving into our new home. We bought it last weekend at Ikea for about ten dollars, which seemed like an acceptable price for such a pretty plant.
It is our first orchid so we are unfamiliar with the type of care necessary to keep it alive, so hopefully we will be able to learn how. It is currently growing on a plant stand next to a south facing window in our bedroom which has thus far stayed rather warm and has maintained somewhere around 45 to 65 percent humidity. We have not yet watered it, since it is still moist since we purchased it. The instructions on the plant said to water it by placing the plant in a bowl of water and then allow the orchid and soil to take up the water. I'm not sure if this is correct or not, so if any of you readers have any suggestions as to house to properly water this plant we would greatly appreciate your help!

Annah's grandparents have been able to keep their orchids alive, so at least we knew it was possible to keep them alive before we purchased them! We will also be contacting them to see what advice they have! We will be posting again in the future with an update regarding this orchid!

Annah and I are now back from our vacation and we have both been busy continuing to move stuff to our new house as well as getting caught up at work. This post has been in the works for a while since the Adromischus cristatus has taken several months to fully flower. Enjoy!

The Adromischus cristatus that Annah and I purchased back in May (see "100 Houseplants" post) has been slowly preparing for a bloom in the past three months and has finally decided that it is time to bloom. The flowers Adromischus cristatus flowers are truly something to behold since they are unlike any other flower that we currently have.

(The two pictures above which I the tried to get a picture of the entire Adromischus cristatus plant are not the greatest, but I hope you are able to get the general idea of what the plant looks like as a whole.)

Ever since bringing this plant home it has been growing next to a window that receives maybe 8-10 hours of sunlight combined with 12-14 hours of fluorescent light per day. It has been watered probably once every 7-10 days since buying it and is so far still in the plastic pot that it was purchased in with the excess water draining into a coffee cup which it sits in. (I have yet to purchase an actual plastic plant tray for the plant, but letting the water drain into this coffee cup seems to work well.)

The Lithops leslie 'albinica', which grows right next to the Adromischus cristatus has so far not really done anything, for better or worse, so I will continue to give it the same care that I've been giving it and see what happens.

It is probably time to head to one of the big plant stores in the Twin Cities to purchase some more plants in the Crassulaceae family since they are fun plants which are also easy to take care of!

In other houseplant news, the African Violet plant (above) that was flowering in a previous post is still flowering beautifully and more flower buds are getting ready to bloom. The other African violets are growing right next to this flowering plant but none of them have flowered recently, so I'm not exactly sure why they are not blooming since they are receiving the exact same care. We'll just have to wait and see, I guess!

Vegetable Garden Pictures

Posted by Jordan | Friday, August 08, 2008 | 0 comments »

The vegetable garden featured in this post is at my parent's hosue. Annah and I have recently moved in together (finally!) and I will only be staying at my parent's house on and off for the next few weeks where I will hopefully be able to enjoy some of the harvest! In addition to that, Annah and I are going on vacation starting tomorrow and we will not return until August 17th, so there will likely not be any posts in our absence.

This particular vegetable garden is small compared to my sister's garden, which we hope to post more about upon our return from vacation, but this garden is a decent sized garden that produces some vegetables for us. It is basically divided up into two sections which will be described below.

Section One: Cucumbers, Zucchini, and Eggplant

In this small space we have a zucchini plant, burpless cucumber plant, regular cucumber plant, and two eggplants. This is just starting to produce vegetables with cucumbers ready for picking and eggplants on the way. The zucchini will probably not be ready for a few more weeks.


Section Two: Tomatoes and Peppers

There are somewhere around ten varieties of tomatoes growing along the back of the house. Most of these are heirloom tomatoes purchased from the farmer's market in town or started from seeds purchased at Seed Savers Heritage Farm. Also growing in there are Serrano peppers and Green peppers, which we enjoy in salsa or just freshly picked.

(Tomato plants)

(Red Zebra Tomato)

(Red Zebra Tomato)

(Yellow Pear Tomato)

(Serrano Peppers)

(Extra plants...)

There wasn't enough space to transplant all of the plants into the garden, so I have left some of them to live out their lives in the containers which they were originally planted and only a few lucky ones were transplanted into larger pots. I am experimenting with this to see if these heirloom tomatoes will produce anything at all in those pots. I will post an update once I find out.