Added New Portable (Temporary) Greenhouse

This spring I ordered a 6’X8′, collapsible, temporary, tent type greenhouse from Amazon as  I did not have near enough room in my 6’X13′ greenhouse to hold all of my plants.  My wife and I assembled it in an afternoon and anchored it to an 8’X10′ deck.  24 hours after adding metal shelving and plants we were hit with sixty mile per hour wind gusts and a terrifying thunder storm.  The tent greenhouse held up to the wind, but shook so violently that it knocked several plant to the floor, breaking a couple of pots and damaging a few plants.  We picked up the mess and moved everything in closer to the center so the shaking walls would hopefully not push any more plants off from the shelves. 

It took considerable time to get the climate semi-regulated in such a small greenhouse.  I think that I finally have it set up so that things are starting to grow correctly.  One of the biggest issues is there is no way to automate any venting so one has to listen to closely to the weather forcasts and estimate in the morning how far to open the Velcro windows and other vents.  I also have to leave for work very early in the morning when often it will be very chilly, which means that even though the thermostat is calling for heat, I still have to open the windows if the forcast is calling for a sunny day.  I can really only recommend this type of greenhouse set up for someone who is retired and can be there to attend to it every day.  It will get me through this summer, but I am unsure if I will use it again.

From Seed to Flower

I just received my first flower from seed that I started late in the fall of 2009.  Here are the photos showing the seed, newly germinated seedlings, and finally the flower taken last night.  It has been a rewarding experience, but it took a lot of nuturing and attention.  The plant was H. cumingiana and was pollinated in the greenhouse by an unknown insect in the summer of 2009.

Use Ebay With Caution

I recently had a very expensive transaction go horribly wrong on Ebay.  I ordered mature plants from Thailand, and they arrived with rotted roots and half cooked to death.  I had to leave negative feedback, because of the lack of seller response.  He then contacted me and negotiated a deal to retract the negative feedback.  This process apparently goes on all of the time and is the reason why sellers have perfect feedback.  The buyer is so desperate to get back some of their money that they give the seller what they want.  After getting back around half of my money, I still feel like I overpaid.  Here is a photo of one of the plants.  Buyer beware and don’t be fooled by these remarkable photos of “actual plant” to be shipped.  I would say order from reputable vendors from here in the U.S. unless you are comfortable taking a big gamble.

New Photos Added

New photos have been added to the Hoya kerrii and Hoya lacunosa pages.  April 2011 now holds the record for the month with the most Hoyas in bloom at one time for myself.  It has been an unbelievable month with at least 15-20 species showing their flowers.  Here is H. macgillivrayi from last night.

Cropping Photos in Picasa

Having your own website doesn’t mean that you have to know very much about computers.  I am really a novice.  I had not used Google Picasa in a long time, but just found out how easy it is to crop photos using this great free software.  Here is an example:

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