Thursday, October 30, 2014

Plants: October 2014

It would appear that we have some sort of pest issue, as all young seedlings that are planted outside are practically being immediately eaten overnight. I suspect it is snails/slugs, so I've put down some pet friendly pellets and eggshells to see if that makes a difference. I have also placed clear cups over all the young seedlings to give them some protection.

The purple corn is definitely doing the best out of everything (except for perhaps the Japanese Maple, which is surprisingly still alive and kicking) even though all the individual corn plants seem to be growing at different rates.
So we've added to the plant count as follows:

2x Pratia Blue (Medium)
1x Saucer Magnolia
1x Bougainvillea (Scarlet)
20x Purple Corn (Planted)
6x Lebanese Cucumber (Planted)
4x Red/Green/Yellow Capsicum (Planted)

The Pratia Blue which was doing fairly well previously is now beginning to dry out. It's not quite dead but it looks like it is struggling to survive. A few weeks ago it was flowering and looked fine.

pratia blue   maple-1   magnolia-1

The new magnolia tree seems to be alive but not doing as well as the Japanese Maple.
Since we already have one established Bougainvillea growing, a second one probably wouldn't hurt.

We also have existing roses which seem to be doing well despite being neglected for who knows how long. There's a dark pink, a yellow and two light pink rose varieties.

corn-nov-3  roses  bougainvillea-scarlet

Most of the corn which was planted directly into the ground has come up and is growing. The growth rates of all the individual plants seem to be quite different to one another though.

I could only get the cucumber and capsicum seedlings to survive by placing a clear cup over them to protect against pest attack. They seem to grow much better this way, although on a few plants, the mystery pest has somehow gotten underneath the cup and taken big bites out of the leaves. Cucumber seems to be especially tasty and prone to being eaten.

And we have lost:

1x Snow in Summer
1x Pratia White
10x Purple Corn Seedlings
5x Lebanese Cucumber (Planted)
5x Red/Green/Yellow Capsicum (Planted)

patch-1 patch-2

Transplanting corn seems to be a bad idea, as the ones planted in the ground are now growing much better than the ones that were started indoors. There was also a lot of stem snapping during transplanting, so that killed off many of my original corn seedlings. (A few were also chewed on by the cat.)

cucumber-1  cucumber-eaten-1

The original cucumber and capsicum seedlings all fell victim to huge bite marks overnight, usually leaving only a chewed stem in the morning. I don't really know what is doing this, but nothing survives very long outside without a protective clear cup over it, except for the purple corn.

Capsicum Seed

Surprisingly, capsicum seeds taken from grocery store produce seem to have quite good germination rates. They grow in Jiffy cells, pots, and on wet paper towel.

The best way to germinate capsicum seed appears to be on a wet paper towel placed in a zip lock bag. Here are some of our results:

capsicum-bag1   capsicum-bag2

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