Settling In

Originally posted on The Expat Garden(er)

After a calamitous plant disaster and some trial-and-error figuring out which plants might succeed out-of-doors, I think my plants are organized as appropriately as I can make them and settling in a little bit. Only a few were lost during the tragedy during the move, luckily, and most plants are now getting over the trauma and moving on.

Outdoors, I have my two Pandanus; the grey-variegated Yucca guatemalensis; the majority of my Plectranthus amboinicus; the Philodendron bipinnatifidum; the green bell pepper seedlings; Cryptanthus; cuttings of Carpobrotus chilensis I "acquired" from a beach in Ventura, California, last month; and various Sanseveria, Haworthia attenuata, Aloe 'Dorian's Black,' and Agave desmettiana planted together in two pots.

Most plants should probably be watered every day or two in this environment. There's some nice breeze to help keep them free of mildew and such, but the environment is very dry. The porch faces east, so the sun only shines on them for a few hours in the morning, but even so, some of the plants are showing signs of either heat or sun damage. I need to be a bit more careful about watering these plants more regularly (it wasn't a problem back in DC, but then, the plants were right next to my bed and much more visible). I used bottled Aquafina to water all of my plants--it's 40 cents (1.50 riyal) for a 1.5 liter bottle, so it adds up, but I don't want to test the desalinated water on my plants, no matter how hardy some of them may be.

Everything else is a few feet behind the outdoor plants, on my shelving unit that I had shipped over from DC. Yes, it only cost $100--but there was a shipment allowance, and as long as I didn't have to pay to have this shipped over, then why not bring it with me? I brought two smaller units as well, but they are in use in the kitchen, which has such shallow cabinets that they can't even fit a plate. So those are holding bulk items (spices, pasta, and other bits in glass jars; pots, pans, baking dishes; and the like).

But this shelving unit is devoted to plants. I don't have fluorescent tubes for my shop lights, so the plants only get what sun comes in through the 20-foot-tall window. You can see the Amorphophallus are doing quite well. The large corm, which I had to cut down to bring here, is maybe dormant already, but the two smaller ones are healthy and soaking up rays. The mixed succulents pot (with Stapelia gigantea, various Haworthia, a Gasteria from my horticulturalist friend at the National Arboretum, and my Cryptanthus 'Volcano') was previously outside, but it came in because I think the environment was too intense for the Haworthia.

On the right of the middle shelf, there are some white pots with seedlings in them. Those babies will be an update for later!

I have many more-focused updates in the works. I have been negligent of The Expat Garden(er), really. I still have photos from California and Doha, Qatar, for The Tourist and Plant Photography posts, as well as more Garden Reports, New Acquisitions, and a few Local Plant Profiles in the works. Those last ones may take more time than I had hoped, but hopefully they'll be interesting and informative.

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One Response to Settling In

  1. Glad you are settling in, the plants in the photos look quite happy! And the balcony is really nice and relaxing looking!


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