Showing posts with label Plants. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Plants. Show all posts

November 13, 2013

How to Make a Planter Out of a Bible

How to Make a Plant Container Out of a Bible

Haworthia Attenuata in Bible Planter
Haworthia Attenuata in Bible Planter

Oh my has it been a really long time since I last posted here.   Not only have things been sort of chaotically disorganized in my life, but I am also overwhelmed with a multitude of tasks of late, leaving me little time, energy or motivation to write, because often, at the end of the day, I am just too exhausted and can't even think straight, never mind even think about what to write about.

  Fortunately today is not one of those days.  If you know me, then you know that I love growing houseplants and have a large collection of various plants throughout my home.  For quite some time I have been wanting to create a unique planter out of a book, however, haven't gotten around to doing it, particularly because I didn't want to destroy any of the books I own. 

Well, take it as a sign, but as I was dumping my trash into the dumpster outside, I noticed a small stack of books, one of them being a Bible.  I thought to myself "hmm.. a perfect candidate for destruction" and brought it inside with the intentions of creating a planter out of the Bible.

Of course you don't have to use a bible to create your own planter.  You can use the Koran or any other fairy tale you wish, so long as it's a hardcover and has enough depth to house the plant you wish to plant in it.

First you want to flip over several pages, and then cut away a hole through the remainder of the book making sure to leave a couple dozen pages at the bottom.

Next, flip over about 4 of the pages you cut out of and then line the hole with plastic.  Now fold the opened pages over the exposed plastic.  Fill with soil and plant your favorite small plant in it.

May 27, 2013

Indoor Plants for Positive Energy & Clean Air

House Plants For Clean Air & Positive Energy

Awhile back I posted about my Tillandsia Air Plants, and since I recently got another one, in addition to several other plants, I decided to write about indoor plants and share with you some photos of my little collection of indoor plants, which I do hope to grow as there are several more plants I want to have, and since I'm nearly out of sunny space in my home, I need to acquire plants better suited for shade although I am supplementing available natural light with artificial light.

Plants inside the home provide not only color, & decor, but promote the flow of positive energy as well as having the benefit of providing clean air.    All plants provide oxygen, however, some remove toxins from the air, and some even clean the air, removing carbon dioxide, dust particles, etc and then releasing fresh, clean oxygen.    Plants are also an excellent form of the elements wood, water & earth in Feng Shui.

This is my latest Tillandsia Air Plant acquisition, however, at this time I have not been able to positively identify it, but think it is most likely to be Capitata Red.

Red Tillandsia Air Plant

Since I mentioned Feng Shui in this post, perhaps I should add that my living room is Japanese in style and decor, with some Chinese in there as well.  The overall design and theme of my living room is that of Washitzu, a traditional Japanese room.   Thinking of Feng Shui, or the Japanese version, Fusui, It's only natural that I would have some Lucky Bamboo in my home, which isn't even Bamboo at all, but one of several variations of Dracaena plants.

The Lucky Bamboo isn't the only "Feng Shui" plant in my house, as I also have a Pachira Aquatica, better known as the "Money Tree", which is said to bring good fortune and wealth when placed in the wealth baqua of the home.

  My interest in this particular tree however, was the thought of it as a candidate for Bonsai since I am interested in Bonsai, however, Bonsai trees are very expensive, so I thought about experimenting and attempting to grow and train trees on my own for creating Bonsai, however, have changed my mind as I have no interest in screwing it up and losing a lovely tree, so, my Money Tree is one of several trees I own, which was purely by accident because some plants I bought not knowing that they grow into full size trees.

Hopefully some day I can afford to buy myself some really nice Bonsai trees.  I'm hoping for a Bonsai Cherry Blossom.

Since I'm already started on trees, I also have a Dracaena Marginata Magenta, aka Madagascar Dragon Tree, as well as an Areca Palm, a Dwarf Schefflera, better known as the "Mini Umbrella Tree" even though it can reach 5 to 6 feet indoors if allowed to, but is still smaller than the standard "Umbrella Tree", and I also have a Coffee Arabica Plant, which at the time of purchase, had no idea that it could become a 6 to 10 foot tree.   Here's the photos of my trees, although they're still tiny trees.

Dracaena Marginata Magenta Areca Palm
Dwarf Schleffera, aka Mini Umbrella Tree Coffee Aribica

I also have Succulents.   My initial interest in these was for miniature gardens, or what some call "Fairy Gardens", but frankly, I just don't have the money to spend on accessories, etc to build a tiny little village with houses, fences and decorations, etc on top of whatever the plants themselves cost, so I skipped doing the mini gardens and decided to not seek out the diminutive succulents for this purpose.

At the greenhouse where I purchased all my trees, I came across a Rhipsalis Heteroclada, and I love this plant, which is not only a Succulent, but also in the Cacti family as well..  All Cactus are Succulents, but not all Succulents are Cactus...  As soon as I got home with m strange and weird plant, the Rhipsalis, I went to Google and began researching it, and learned that this plant can become MASSIVE, and that I can create numerous additional plants via propagation of cuttings, so, I am very happy about that, because many people collect these as well as other Succulents, so, having such a large plant enables me to trade cuttings for different varieties, and besides, I really LOVE this plant, and it was the first Succulent for me.

Rhipsalis Heteroclada
Anyone interested in trading cuttings?  I'd love to have fire sticks, properly known as Euphorbia Tirucalli, and it's high on my list of plants to get, so, if you have one and would like to trade for some of my Rhipsallis cuttings, let me know. :)  Of course I'd trade for other Rhipsalis, other succulents, etc, etc.
One species of Succulent plant I really wanted was a Haworthia Attenuata, which looks like a prehistoric and diminutive, zebra striped and spiky Aloe, and yes, Aloe is a Succulent.    I also wanted very badly what is called Lithops, better known as "Living Stones" because they look like rocks until they bloom and a flower grows from the center, however, my seven year old daughter calls them the "Butt Plant" because she says they look like "little butts"...meaning asses, not cigarette butts, not that I needed to tell you that, but you never know.. I've had more than a fair share of illiterate readers here before, so.....

So.. one day I was in CVS and discovered that they were selling little Succulent plants, however, the selection was poor, and they were in terrible condition, mostly dead,  but I did however buy one since they were only $2. however, have no idea what it is, and am not too interested in this one... BUT, when I crossed the street and went into Walgreens, I found that they too were selling them, but as mini greenhouses featuring a six pack of little succulents in a little clear plastic greenhouse shaped container, and lo and behold, there in one of the packages was a Haworthia Attenuata that I desired, and in another package, a pair of Lithops...  So, I opened up both packages, and made sure the package I bought had both of these. :)

In addition to the Haworthia, and the Lithops, the only other of these Succulents I'm able to identify is the one I believe to be a Crassula Ovata variety, but at this time am not certain which variation.  There was one of the Echeveria variations, but I squashed it by accident and it's not in this photo.  I'm hoping that the dropped leaves I saved will root and that I can generate more Succulents via propagation.

I don't know what kind of Lithops I have, but there's hundreds of varieties out there, and I can't wait to find more, although trying to shop for Lithops online is a pain in the ass due to all the shady seed sellers who make it difficult to find actual plants because of all the goddamn seeds spam listed on ePig.

I did want to write about several plants I want to have, most of them unusual, weird and odd, but suppose that can wait for another day.

Oh, and since I mentioned my living room being Japanese, & Chinese, perhaps some day I will post some photos of my Washitzu, and some of my Japanese and Chinese art.

May 20, 2013

Have You Ever Tried or Used Crystal Soil?

Crystal Soil
Crystal Soil
  Shortly after writing my post on Tillandsia Air Plants, I got a few house plants, and have plans to get many more, most of them unusual or rare.

In my eBay searches looking up various rare plants, I came across something called Crystal Soil, which I've never heard of before.   This Crystal Soil looks like colored glass marbles, yet is not made of glass, but a form of gel crystal that you soak in water and then use instead of soil.

I find this Crystal Soil appealing as a decorative item for use in clear plant containers and want to try it, perhaps with a Lucky Bamboo, however, I'm hesitant about using it on any plant that relies on and needs real soil because I don't want to kill a plant, even though several sites selling Crystal Soil claim it to be safe, non toxic and claim that it contains nitrogen, phosphorous and potassium and other nutrients plants need.

Have you ever used crystal soil?  What was your experience, and what kind of plant did you put in it? How did the plant handle it?  Personally, my thoughts are that it's fine for Lucky Bamboo, or cut flowers, etc as a purely decorative item, but wanted to see what others say about this odd little product and it's use and function with houseplants, or even indoor grown herbs, etc..

April 27, 2013

Tillandsia Air Plants

Collecting Tillandsia Air Plants

Due to moving into my new apartment and having an extremely poor internet connection over the past few weeks, I have been unable to update this blog, but now that my mobile broadband connection seems to have improved, I'd like to share with my readers about these beautiful and interesting plants I recently just found out about these cool little plants called Tillandsia, known as Air Plants, because they live in the air, not in soil.  They're from the Bromeliad family & get their nutrients from the air & water.

Shortly after moving into my new home I was walking around town when I discovered a new shop that wasn't here when I lived here before, so I decided to check it out, and it was there that I first saw the air plants, but at the time I was just looking around as I had no money to spend.

I didn't think too much about the air plants again until I had some spare cash, and ended up going back there to buy some, and came home with three of them.   When I was back at home, I searched on Google to get information on how to care for Tillandsia Air Plants and it was then that I learned that there's 540 different varieties.  I love these cute little plants and decided that I want a small collection of air plants of various varieties, and so, roughly a week or so later, I was back in the shop and picked up three more.

After I decided how I wanted to display my cute little air plants, I couldn't wait to photograph my new Tillandsia collection & show them to my friends and family on Facebook, and now here I am sharing them with you.

Tillandsia Air Plant, Capitata Peach
Tillandsia Air Plant, Capitata Peach, on a glass container I found for free outside, filled with sea glass, rocks & oyster shells my daughter & I picked up at our local beach. Capitata Peach Tillandsia is a native of Dominican Republic, Cuba and Mexico and grows mainly on rocks.

Bulbosa Belize Tillandsia Air Plant
Tillandsia Air Plant, Bulbosa Belize sitting on an oyster shell.  When the Bulbosa Belize Tillandsia blooms, there will be a bright red flower.  This variety is a native of Belize in Central America.

Ionantha Mexican Tillandsia Air Plant
Tillandsia Ionantha Mexican, mounted by making a hole in wine bottle cork I scavenged out of a recycling bin.  There are variations of the Ionantha Tillandsia, this variety being a native of Mexico.

Harrisii Tillandsia Air Plant

Harrisii Tillandsia Air Plant
These two photos are of the same Tillandsia Air Plant, Harrisii, mounted on a piece of Atlantic ocean driftwood bark.  Harrisii Tillandsia was named after an American air plant enthusiast, Bill Harris, that was murdered in 1985 in Guatemala where the species is a native plant.  Harrisii is an endangered species in Guatemala.

Tillandsia Air Plant Ionantha
Tillandsia Air Plant I haven't positively identified as of this posting, but believe to be Ionantha Guatamala, mounted on a piece of Atlantic ocean driftwood.  When mounting Tillandsia Air Plants on ocean driftwood, you must make sure that the driftwood has had all salt removed, usually by soaking it for a couple weeks with several water changes.  Salt will kill a Tillandsia Air Plant.

Juncea Tillandsia Air Plant
Tillandsia Air Plant, Juncea, mounted on a piece of Atlantic ocean driftwood.   Juncea Tillandsia is a tall, grassy air plant.   Juncea Tillandsia is native to Bolivia, Brazil, Costa Rica, Mexico and Venezuela.

I hope you enjoyed this post on Tillandsia Air Plants.  If you're interested in getting air plants of your own, considering buying air plants on Amazon & I'll earn a small commission when you buy via my links.