Jul 30, 2009

I'm no "Miss Muffet"

Little Miss Muffet sat on a tuffet
Eating her curds and whey
Along came a spider
Who sat down beside her
And frightened Miss Muffet away!

Was capturing Alisma P. for a good shot until came a spider beside me. But this "Miss Muffet" isn't frightened by this spider ;-)

Jul 25, 2009

Midday Glow

Group flowers together in the sun, you'll get an attractive piece in your garden.

Photos are taken during midday which feels like 39 degree C (102 degree F), an occasional slight breeze from SSE 9.66 kph.

Dewpoint at 25 degree C (early in the morning) and high humidity 66% throughout the day to counter this scorching heat.

Rains only 2 or 3 times a month; so daily plant waterings becomes a necessity.

Heavy-waterings in the evenings and light-waterings in the mornings, to keep plants looking refreshed.

Heavy-waterings in the evenings and light-waterings in the mornings, to keep plants looking refreshed.
Light-waterings directly on soils to keep it damp during the hot part of the day. Also recommended morning watering to newly planted bedding plants and vegetables. In very hot and dry weather, may require watering during midday to keep plants from flagging - also to note that water at midday means a lot of moisture will be lost from evaporation.

Jul 24, 2009

Starting blooms

Young plants grow from seeds; yellow Turnera and Purple with pink center Perinwinkle Minor started to bloom already at only a foot tall.

Perinwinkle Madagascar (Apricot Delight) in cascading blooms. They don't seem to seed like Periwinkle Minor, neither grow via stem-cutting.

Planterbox nursery

Time to pot Zinnias seedlings. Pic left; these seedlings are bursting the peat pot's bag (net). The peat pots are moisted every evening after the day's torturing heat (32 degrees C / 90 degrees F).

More Zinnias seedlings in separate pot of soil. These took a week to germinate compared to the peat pot that took less than 3 days.

Ooops Jewels of Opar don't look good. A few kinds of herbs (Suat couldn't remember its names to tell me) - of the three, only one pot looks ok but isn't growing well like Zinnias. I wonder why.

Need this planter box, so Jewel of Opar to make way for the Zinnia seedlings and the healthy pot of herbs.
Removed the peat pots' bag (net). Split each peat pot into half and spaced them for room to grow.

Zinnia seedlings takes backstage with herbs in the front.

10 days after re-planting, these seedlings are growing upright steadily.

These, Periwinkle and Butter Daisy are filling up the box fast. I've replanted them 2 weeks ago.

Jul 17, 2009

5-inch long Butterfly - oops it's a Moth :)

Whoaa .. it's so huge that you can't miss it. 5-inch (12cm) long butterfly (in-progress checking on its species), pretty tame. Gave us quite a fright when it flew about overheads, in and out of the house. But if you're looking out for it, it is visible as far as 21 feet away. Somehow it got used to the camera flashlight and it stayed for 20 minutes to pose for me. ;-)

Symbolic meanings from WikiAnswers;

Butterfly is called "hu-tieh" in Chinese, "tieh" means 70 years that symbolises longevity and represents young men in love.

For the Japanese, it represents young maidens and marital bliss. Which is why it is common to find butterfly design on families' crest.

Reversely, the Germans believed that when butterflies hovering around milk pails or butter churns; are witches trying to steal the cream.

While ancient Greek considered butterflies as souls of those who passed away and an Irish saying, "Butterflies are souls of the dead waiting to pass through purgatory".

My Butterfly Gallery http://angelfire.com/journal2/chinfashin/piclist/piclist.html

Update Oct-12: Anatomy of Butterfly.

Update Sep-27: Thanks to James Missier (yet again), an incredible find which took me months! I found an interesting site sells framed insects showing types of Uraniid Moths from the Family Uraniidae. Closest resemblance would be Nyctalemon sp.

Well, I'll leave the Anatomy of Butterfly here for the time-being. Checkout Butterfly and Moth Anatomy; difference would be a Moth does not have 'Proboscis' and 'Spiracles' (the part after 'Abdomen').

Germinate & Thrive

Zinnia seedlings in small peat pot are thriving better than the potted soil. Take a look of these seedlings 10 days ago at SnapShots of Home Gardening: Light drizzle

Sweet Success! I transplanted these babies (bottom pic: periwinkle left and butter daisy right) a week ago. I noticed its growth rate faster when given sufficient clearance surrounding it (not over-crowded). Got to think of what to do (fast) before they start getting over-crowded again!

Jul 10, 2009

Voracious Grasshopper

Biggest I ever seen - size 4" long x 1" wide, it was eating my neighbour's Limau Kasturi's (Citrus Microcarpa) leaves. Leaving bite size of 0.5" semi-circle on each leaves, nearly half the plant.
It's time to pesticide!

Jul 8, 2009

Light drizzle

Capital COOL after a light evening shower followed by an hour of drizzle. Gardening during drizzle, a soothing activity in a calm atmosphere. Spent my time tidying up pots, removing the old to make room for the growing seedlings and grouped seedlings according type and growth size.

If you've seen the previous blog on 'Seedlings & Growth' in Jul, I've decided to remove the spent Medallions (Butter daisy) replaced with transplanted young seedlings. Pic top; Medallions seedlings on top and Madagascar periwinkle at bottom. Pic below; remaining old Medallions in a pot (left), Yellow turnera seedlings sandwiched in between and a single (spotted buds, yippee!) M. periwinkle in a pot, right - yet to know which bloom colour.

I've experimented growing Zinnia seeds in 'Small Peat Pot' last Sunday. Just 2 days later, germination success! Pic left, more seedlings spotted on 3rd day while young ones already reaching out for sunlight. Now they're relocated to part sun-shade area, next to our bonsai.
Pic below; a Marigold seedling, is taking quite a while.

Update Jul-24: Marigold seedling didn't make it.

Jul 5, 2009

Pretty Chrysanthemums

Pretties .. had to have it - don't you think so?
RM1 each from Pasar Mini Sun City. There were other colours; yellow, orange (or bronze) and red.

Chrysanthemum flowers symbolises 'strong life'; in Chinese culture, giving these flowers (especially red ones) to elderly (old people) for its meaning. However, these flowers, do not symbolise love and affection, to be given to loved ones. White and yellow Chrysanthemum flowers commonly used for prayers or funerals.

Seedlings & Growths

2 months later, Medallions (Butter Daisy) seedlings germinated from dead blooms - easy to grow.

We didn't plant these following our landscape maintenance's advice; that it may not last as long as the Zinnias and Marigolds. She was right but she hadn't mention about germination much easier than those in the flowerbed!

Darling Pentas (Egyptian Stars clusters) had grown bushier with more, and more non-stop blooms. I'll recommended these instead of the Lantanas any time!

4 months now, (see http://jaimeboey.blogspot.com/2009/03/pretty-blooms.html ) .. it has been a gradual slow growth for these seedlings while I patiently wait. Pic left, Madagascar Periwinkle. Pic right, Yellow Turnera.

Saving seeds

Oh look at how 'tall' our Zinnias! They've eclipse the Marigolds (backstage). On top of that, its blooms twice larger and last 2 weeks longer than poor Marigolds.

Zinnia seeds; for germination success use dark/black seeds which are ripe. To be 'ripe', it should have darkened to a dusty brown or gray shade. White seeds are not yet ripe.


Pick wilted blooms to dry for a few days. Gently rub the base of the flower and seeds will tumble out.

Marigolds propagated by seeds, at least 2 cm apart; takes 45 days to flower after germination. Cover seeds with 1/4" of potting soil. Water sufficiently. Seedling emerge within a few days and start flowering after 1-2 months. Start fertilizing monthly once buds are formed. Potash fertiliser prolongs the flowering period. http://www.dooyoo.co.uk/plants/marigold/1227656

I'm trying out this - small peat pot to germinate Zinnia seeds. Interesting to watch as the peat capsule enlarged after soaking in water for 10 minutes.

I should be stuffing 3 to 4 seeds; I thought hard, what if some seeds didn't germinate? Well? The more the merrier! Stuffed 7 to 9 seeds each.

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