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The Survivors.


By Raquel


As some of you may know, about half of my plants died off last summer, but there were some that survived…even though at times they looked like they had completely wilted and died! So these are the survivors, who are doing much better this year, after coming through the drought last year.

The survivor prize goes to this “Rangoon Vine Creeper” which I had bought hoping it would entwine itself around the balcony railing. But that never happened. The plant remained small and eventually dropped all its leaves, leaving stems that looked like sticks. I figured it was dead and put it aside, next to the wall. But I would still occassionally water it, because I hate to see anything die in the garden and because hope springs eternal! I kept promising myself to throw it out, but I never had the time to walk down the three flights of stairs to put it in the dumpster. And then one day I noticed a bit of green on it. I was amazed. It was still alive! The cold hadn’t killed, it either. I was disappointed when I learned after buying it that it would be 5 years before it flowered, but a collegue has just told me today to feed it vigorously and it should bloom earlier, and that the scent was wonderful. So I am looking forward to it now. here it is, the plant that refused to die:

Another were the red begonias, who remained green and with small flowers throughout; here they are happily responding to the organic fertilizer I gave them and a more regular watering schedule…you can see them growing, mounding and with new flowers…I hope they manage to spill over the container!:

The petunias were on the other half of this rectangular pot. They died, and left these nice red flowers…whose name I can’t remember right now…I am looking for more, to fill the pot up with more, but I haven’t been able to find them anywhere…! I am sometimes temptedto take some from the gardens I walk by, but no, I couldn’t do that, truly, but I wish I could find some…! I know they come in a variety of colors:

It amazes me how quickly plants respond to care (and makes me feel a little guilty of the lack of time and busy schedule that didn’t let me do that for half the year). It hasn’t been more than a week and a half since I started cleaning up my garden, and the gerbera daisy and the lavender miniature rose already look much better…the first two pictures are how they looked almost two weeks ago:
the lavender rose:

and the red gerbera daisy:

and here is how they look today, after being fed Rabbit Hill Farm Rose Food, an organic fertilizer (look at those leaves! and the gerbera is about to bloom soon):

I planted this white daisy without much hope it would survive, but it has done quite well…it does tend to get crisped if the sun hits it for too long, but it is growinf and has even given one bloom (albeit a weak one). It does tend to attract mealy bugs, so it requires quite a bit of spraying:

The red impatien did wilt almost completely, so I pruned it…you can see, however, that the plant is already sprouting again, so I hope that it will recover completely:

The plants that surprised me by their hardiness were the scented-leaved geraniums (especially because ALL of my hybrid geraniums died). Here is one in a clay pot, happy as a clam even though the pot has no plastic liner! I guess it just liked where it was!:

These two also create shade for a small pink polka dot plant that keeps popping up periodically, even though it’s died a couple times…the roots must still be there, and the geraniums must keep it shady enough and cool enough for the pink polka dot plant to grow..who knew? :

I am really glad that my peach rose survived and has actually bloomed. So did my white miniature rose. The red and yellow varieties died. But I love this color of rose, and it lifts my spirits every time I see it:

The summer is scorching hot already – hopefully this year I’ve taken enough precautions and have a strciter watering schedule so that the plants will thrive! But we’ll see.

More blog posts by Raquel

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Another great blog, Raquel~our plants can be tougher than they look sometimes lol! It's amazing what a little love and attention does to revive them and body and soul too. Congrats on your tough little survivers! :~))

13 Jun, 2010


I'm very pleased you have so many surviving plants Raquel :o)

14 Jun, 2010


Thanks Floribunda and Hywel - it is really interesting to see which plants really are tough in terms of standing the heat and which just wilt away...hope you're also having a good summer!

15 Jun, 2010


So far so good :o)
Not too hot and not too wet .... yet :/

15 Jun, 2010


That's great it's absolutley scorching...but that's south Texas for you! A heat index of 100 F (40 C)!!

18 Jun, 2010


Oh dear :o( I think that's rather too hot lol.

18 Jun, 2010

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