Soft pink and red strawberry flowers

The Sweet Rose and Sweet Pink strawberries have started flowering ~ The photo didn’t capture it, but the Sweet Pink have soft pink flowers, and the Sweet Rose have red flowers. Very different from the standard white strawberry flowers ~

I have grown a pink flowering type before, but it was a different shade of pink ~

Can’t wait for the strawberries ~

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Water to plants

Since we have moved, I now have a tap in the backyard. That’s probably something a lot of people take for granted, but previously I had to go outside to the side of the house to turn the tap on, then throw the hose over the fence to water the garden and my pot plants in the backyard. (Seriously, I don’t know what the building designer/architect for that townhouse complex was thinking?!) It is now so much easier that I’m watering my plants more regularly. It helps that my son is now a little older and okay for me to be out of sight for a little while and also there’s lawn in the backyard for him to play in while I water the plants. The down side is there’s no rain water tank installed in this house. Oh well, I guess there’s no perfect house, especially rental.

Anyway, since the plants are watered more regularly, I can really see their changes. Their leaves looks a lot better, and even start flowering either for the first time, or much more profusely. Namely, the port wine magnolia flowered for the first time, the Lots A Lemon flowered profusely with its perfumed blooms attracting lots of bees, and the wisteria which struggled to push out one raceme the year before, failed to flower last year, have produced four racemes this year ~

It shows a little regular watering goes a long way ~ Even chlorinated town water ~

Wisteria with four racemes

Wisteria with four racemes

BOGI fair scores

It was the annual BOGI fair the Sunday just past, I didn’t go last year so I made an effort to go this year. I wanted to get a strawberry guava ($8, AKA as red cherry guava), and a grumichama ($6) from Forbidden fruits nursery

Of course I ended up buying more than planned, with the extras being a dwarf tropical apple Anna ($15), a coffee tree ($6), and two strawberry plants of varieties I haven’t heard of at $3 each 🙂 (Sweet Rose and Sweet Pink) All up I’ve spent a total of $41 ~ Pretty good I reckon. All trees were from Forbidden fruits nursery, and apparently all of them were on special. I was really tempted to get a Jaboticaba ($10), and a Ylang Ylang ($10) which were marked down too, but I suspect I really have no room ……(really? Do I need to suspect? I have NO room!!) The strawberries were from Brett’s home and timber hardware I think….

I can’t find any information about these two strawberry varieties though, hope they’ll grow well ~

Strawberries

Strawberries

Spring is a busy time for us gardeners 🙂 Tough decision for where to go this weekend with Bonsai Bonsai Society of Qld exhibition, Pohlmans spring celebration, and father’s day activities…

Potting session 1

For many plants, the best time for repotting is early spring just before their active growing begins. We’re now in the middle of winter, but because I have missed this window of opportunity to repot for a couple of years, I have a back log of trees to repot.

Especially for my Wisterias, I would like to repot them just before bud swell, so I’m starting to pot early with some of my other trees so that I’m not rushing the whole lot at the same time.
That’s why this is potting session 1. In this session, I potted up my Clementine Mandarin and Valencia orange, moving them from their nursery bags. I got these from Aldi when they were marked down to $10 each. Bargains, considering grafted citrus trees are sold between $20 to $30 dollars nowadays and more if they’re dwarfs. These are just regular grafts, but since they’re cheap, I’m more than happy to experiment growing them in pots. These went into two self-watering pots that are wider on the top, which should be ideal for citrus having their feeder roots on the surface. I got these from Reject shop for $16 each. Because these pots are a little wide on the top for the current roots, I have transplanted a couple of strawberries, and sown some vegetables and flower seeds on the rim to try eliminate problems with overpotting.

I’ve also up potted my Gorgeous crabapple, but have discovered a few curl grubs, and the root system have shrunk compare to when I first bought it a few years back, so the larger pot I’ve moved it into is actually too big for the root system. I’ve sown some lettuces around it too. I hope the tree would survive, I think I should give the top a hard prune as well to balance out the root prune by the grubs…

The goji berries is potted back in the same pot with fresh potting mix. I ran out of potting mix when I first planted the goji berries, and I had mushroom compost on hand at the time, so I used mainly mushroom compost, and it obviously didn’t like it much, hopefully it’ll do better with the repot.

That’s all I had time for on the weekend. I had planned to do the fig as well, but ran out of time, so I’ll do it in the next session. Hopefully soon…

Repot session 1

Airlayering Crabapple follow up

It was October last year when I attempted the airlayer on my crabapple, and in that post I was planning to update in a couple of months.
Well, I did check in a couple of months, but I did not feel that there were any roots forming, so I did not post a follow up.

As time went on, one of the airlayer “bag” fell off, the ziplock bag opened and some of the coir fell out, and the only one left intact was the bubble wrap one so I did not have high hopes for them. I’m planning to repot my crabapple, so I went and removed what’s left of all the airlayer bags, and discovered there were roots in the bubble wrap one!!!

The coir in there was dried, and I’m not sure how long they’ve been dried for, and whether the roots are alive or not. So I wrapped it with clear thick packing plastic this time with fresh potting mix. Hopefully more and stronger roots will form in spring, and then I’ll try to cut this off.

Lessons learnt:-

  • If the airlayer “bag” stay intact, there’s a chance there may be roots.
  • Try not to use bubble wrap for better visibility and ‘feel’
  • Use sticky tape to tape plastic film close around the trunk
  • Do not use sandwich bag ties, they’re too short and difficult to work with
  • Do not use plastic cable ties. The piece of plastic I tried to wrap around the trunk this time round keeps slipping out of the cable tie
  • May need to water the airlayer “bags”

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    Remains of the airlayer bags

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    Showing dried coir medium

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    Roots!!

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    Wrapping it up again