Diary - July 2004
The Oxford Cactus Show was brilliant as usual. I have rarely seen such high quality exhibits. Apart from admiring other people’s plants, occasions like this are great social events where one meets so many fellow enthusiasts. My plants wont have many more outings this year. I shall take three or four to the National Show later this month (though I shall be surprised and delighted if I even get a Highly Commended) and shall also exhibit at the Mesemb. Show in Oxford in October and that will be it. I intend to cut down on my showing next year. Most of my plants are becoming too heavy to carry about and Lyn and I are not getting any younger.
The plants are looking good. Most of my Lithops seedlings have now been pricked out into seed trays. The seed planted in February started appearing after five days and most lots were showing well by ten days. In a few pots where germination had been poor a fresh flush of seedlings has appeared so those pots will have to wait till Spring to be potted on. I planted some of my own Lithops seed in May when the weather was hot and, when there was still no sign of them a month later, I though that the seed must have been useless. Imagine my surprise, during that cold spell in July, to see lots of little seedlings. My only conclusion is that the weather was too hot for them to germinate in late May and June. It is a good thing that I had not got around to throwing them out!
Lackham College has passed on to Maurice and I some plants that were left to them by a gentleman who died. They kept the best plants for the College and gave us some of the spare ones. Most need some tender loving care having been neglected during their owners final illness. We have been treating them with insecticide, repotting some and taking cuttings of others. We will bring those that are fit for sale to the next meeting. We will be selling them cheaply and the proceeds will go to Branch Funds. Some of the plants being kept by the college are large mature plants and it will be good that they will be setting up a fine exhibition of cacti and succulents in their greenhouse.
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