"Gardening is about enjoying the smell of things growing in the soil, getting dirty without feeling guilty, and generally taking the time to soak up a little peace and serenity. " ~Lindley Karstens

Monday, February 22, 2010

A Busy Weekend in the Garden

I have been busy in the garden this weekend! 

For the past a couple of weeks,  the weather in south florida has been on the cold side (Majority of days' temperature was in 50s, and nights in 40s, or even high 30s),  some very cold tender plants in my garden again show some sign of cold damages.   So, with this weekend's warm weather (day temperature in 70s, and night went to 60s), I just can't help staying outside in the garden as much as I can and get my hands in the soil again! Hmm, felt so good!

Friday night I potted up some cuttings I previousely put in the water, including three Angel's Trumpets cuttings from my friend at work, and some double layered hibiscus cuttings. We will see if I can be successful on these cuttings.

On Saturday, when we went shooping at Costco, I was hoping to find some new plants there, and I was not disapointed!  This is what I came home with:  Two boxes of two-root dormant rose bushes!

The type in the left box is called "New Day".  Here is the description on the box: "Bright , clear yellow roses of good form and spicy fragrance that bloom continuously through the season.  medium-sized bush. Everblooming Hybrid Tea Rose".  Yellow is missing in my rose collection, and the spicy fragrance is an extra bonus.  So, I have to have it :)

The type in the right box is called "Peace". Here is the description on the box: "Magnificent blooms of soft, clear yellow edged with pink, on strong stems, large, dark, leathery foliage. Vigorous. Everblooming Hybrid Tea Rose".  The bicolor again is something that led me to buy it.  I hope it lives up to its promise.

I know, I know, they are not on the rootstocks (Fortuniana and Dr. Hughey) that are perfect for Florida climate, but with the color this lovely, and the price so tempting ($11.99 for one two-roots combo), I just can not resist buying two combos!  If not because my limited garden space, I might have bought more colors.

On the way home from Costco, hubby needed to go to a store to buy something for the swimming pool, and the Home Depot JUST happens to be nearby.  So, I asked him to drop me off there first to JUST take a look :)  They had lots of plants stocked for the spring, and I really could not JUST take a look.  As a result, these two pots of Ground Orchids (Spathoglottis) followed me home...

They are in two different colors.  The first one is kind of purple, pink combination (not as purple as 'Grapette').  I guess it is "Sorbet".  Any thought? 

The second one is more on pink side. Who knows what is the name of this color in Ground Orchid family?
When we finally came home, it was almost the dinner time.  After I fixed a quick dinner for the whole family,  I headed out to the garden to start dividing the orchids.

The original plan was dividing each pot into two sections.  However, I quickly discovered each pot has very big clumps of plants.  I ended to divide the purple one into three sections, and the pink one into four sections, total seven divisions out of two containers (total cost of $29.98)! Not a bad deal, huh? 

Although it was said that Spathoglottis plicata needs full sun to bloom, but in Florida, it prefers to getting some afternoon shade.  With this in mind, I planted three of them in the west side of the front yard, same flower bed as the African Iris.  They are under a small oak tree, which I hope will provide some shade to the

After planting three orchids, it was already around 10:00 at night.  So I decided to call it a day.  When I went on bed, I was locating a right spot in my garden in my mind for the rest of four plants...

Sunday, my kids had academic competitions and a field day at Sunday Chinese school.  The only time I can find for gardening is again after the dinner :)

I eventually decided I will plant the rest of orchids in the backyard.  The only spot I can find that has partial shade in the afternoon is west flower bed, at the corner that close to the house.  After moving out two Devil's backbone plants (Pedilanthus tithymaloides) to a near by location, and two pineapple plants to a more sunny place, I finally got the space for two of ground orchids.  I think they look quite good behind the stock (Matthiola) plants in bright pink color.  You also can see the devil's backbone at the left bottom corner.

There are still two divisions of ground orchids not planted in the ground yet.  I potted them up for now until I can find some other places in my garden.  I think I might need another flower bed on the sides of the house, so that I can have more plants that love partial shade.  That will be on my to-do list for this year.

As for those four newly purchased dormant rose bushes, I will leave them in the box until next weekend.  So stay tunned :)

How was your weekend?  Hope you all had a very relaxing, or fullfilled weekend!


  1. Hi Ami, i love those red flowers in front of your ground orchids, what are they? And your sidebar flowers i love too, esp the persian shield and the blue salvia. I think i love them better than the ground orchid, hehe. Happy gardening!

  2. Those are called stock, or Matthiola.

    I saw your comments at Autumn Belle's site about ground orchids. Bad experience, huh? I guess you just need to find the plants that are most suitible for your garden, and what make you feel happy. That is what the gardening all about, right?

  3. Ami,
    Your weekend sounds so much like my weekends when my children were small. My grandkids were here with me this weekend and they absolutley love to see what's going on in my garden. I got a big thumb's up from them on the new planting bed I'm working on every spare second.

    You sure got the most for your money and the most for your time this weekend. All my ground orchids are toast but I'm holding out hope they will return with warmer weather. I do exactly what you did... always divide them upon purchase... and go to sleep with visions of plantings dancing in my head.

    Enjoy your week... I'm hoping the cooler weather hangs around a bit (not freezing just cooler). It really is nice for shoveling so many loads of dirt and mulch.

  4. I can so relate to going to bed planning the garden in my head. I had to laugh. Your purchases are all wonderful. I have the grapette ground orchids here and they are brown but pushing out some new babies so I have hope for them. I have a trip to Costco planned for later this week. I'll have to check out those roses!

  5. GREAT purchase!! I do the same...make the most of every dollar spent! The ground orchids look wonderful in your garden! I'm with you...I can't just "stop by" either. I always leave the store with something...it can't be helped!
    Also, I love your blog background! Did you recently change it or have I just been in a fog (well, yes I have been, but...)?! It seems like "you"!

  6. Meems and NanaK:

    LOL. I think every gardener has that "planting in the head" moment. I am sure all of your ground orchids will come back when the weather warms up. Show me some pictures when they return to bloom.

    Meems: That must be wonderful feeling to get the thumb's up from grandkids! I wish my boys can be more interested into the gardening, so I can have more bonding time with them WHEN I am gardening. They are more into video games when they have free time :( I can not wait to see your new flower bed reveal, when are you going to post your picture?

    NanaK: Let me know what color of the Roses you get at the Costco if you actually make the purchase. I saw one in pink color, and says it has strong fragrance. But I already have three pink rose bushes already. And the one with crimson color is also pretty...

    Kimberly: Yes, I never can not just "stop by". I think hubby knows that too, but he never complains. I love him for that!

    Yes, I changed the background around the chinese New Year (2/14). The theme is called "Harmony". I thought it fits well with Chinese New Year. I am glad you think this is like "me". It is interesting after a while, we seem start knowing each other in person even we just talk through this blogger world :)

  7. Hi Ami,
    I like your strategy of divide and conquer with the Ground Orchids.When they grow and clump up you will have restoring fresh supply for your garden.

  8. I hope your roses do well. I have grown the Peace rose and it is beautiful. How great that you can plant orchids in the ground where you live. Here in the desert, they are definitely a houseplant. By the way, two of my kids also attend Chinese school on Sundays. They were both adopted from China :^)

  9. Looks like you're going to have lots of color and sweet scent in your garden this spring. I wish we could grow ground orchids in the ground here...it's just too cold.

  10. Spathoglottis is one of my favorite flowers! I especially love the cultivar called 'Berry' which I think is the one in your photo. It grows much larger than 'Grapette' which is cute but not so stunning. There is a photo in my blog sidebar. No clue what the second photo is. ?? This year, my ground orchids were burned in the freeze marathon. I should've covered them! I do think they'll return, though. They have before. We'll see. If not, they will be replaced. That's how much I love them!

  11. Congratulatiosn on your spathos. I bought mine at a flowershop at the local upermarket. I usually buy my plants direct from the nursery but that day, somehow I just fell for this plant and brought it home. No regrets so far. I call mine 'village orchids' because it reminds me so much of my home a long long time ago. Ground orchids are fascinating, aren't they? Good Luck!

  12. Sanddune: Yes, I am learning this new strategy :) I like to stretch my dollar to get most out of it for my garden.

    Noelle: Yes, that "Peace" rose color looks so delicate in the picture. I will post some pictures when it actually bloom for me :) The reason you can not put the ground orchid in the ground is too hot in the summer, or too dry? I don't know how the weather is like in Arizon in the winter. Any freeze danger?

    I saw your post about Chinese New Year, that is how I knew you have three children adopted from China. You must be a very good and patient mom with warm heart! Glad to know you send them to the Chinese school to keep part of their roots. I am so touched.

    I have been so eagerly to wait for the spring coming! So that I can see my garden completely awaken :) I guess my being a little south does make a little difference in terms of plants selection. I saw everybody in your area is saying their ground orchids were hit pretty hard during the freeze. I need to remember that next time the cold weather hits here.

    Floridagirl: Thanks for the name of the orchid! If your ground orchids ever come back, please show more pictures of them in different color, I am very interested! Best of the luck.

    Autumn Belle: Thanks. I know the feeling about a particular plant becuase it associates with a past memory or a person. Yes, I love this orchid!

  13. Great to note that you got the roses - do be careful with those thorns - they do look very intimidating.

    And good luck with the ground orchids - are you planting them directly into the soil?
    Because if you do, you would not able to transfer them during the freeze?

  14. Ami, you have done well; a lot of work in the garden and buying plants which you could divide. I have a Peace Rose. It is a wonderful Rose even in my climate's humid conditions. It does better in spring, autumn and winter. Well worth having.
    I am looking forward to cooler days as my garden needs a lot of TLC after the summer heat. I hope all the plants do well and bring you lots of pleasure.

  15. James: Yes, I put the orchid directly in the ground. I was hoping we have past the freeze danger at least for this year (knock on the woods). I will remember to cover them in case the weather does not coorporate.

    Titania: Yes, the roses also do better here in spring, autumn and winter. We have totally opposite weather. For us, the summer is not that far away. Florida's summer heat is also not too pleasant. But most of plants here love it :) Thanks for the wish. The gardening is bringing me countless pleasure...

  16. Your two ground orchids are lovely. I have not seen those colors, mine is purple. I think I need to divide mine and move some into a shadier location. I love it.

    I don't have either of those roses but they are pretty. Do they have a scent?

    I'd love to email you but didn't see an email addy in your profile. You can email me through my profile.

    Have a great weekend ~ FlowerLady


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