Diary - March 2004
All my plants have now had their first watering, some have had their second and all are rushing into growth. The flowering season is well under way amongst the earlier Mammillarias and Parodia, Rebutia, Echinocereus and Neoporteria are budding up well.
This years seedlings are coming through and each day I can be seen with my magnifying glass checking if any more seeds have germinated. I spray the seedlings daily and make sure that the pots donít dry out. I have topdressed all the seedlings with fine grit to give them support and to prevent algae from growing on top of the damp potting mixture.
Most of my Echevaria have been put outside to enjoy the milder weather and to make more room in the greenhouse. If we have another very cold spell I will take them back in. I like to have them out of doors for as much of the year as possible as this seems to enhance their colour. They are fairly hardy and spend their winter in an unheated greenhouse, in fact I have some planted out in the garden that survive the winter well. It is only by trial and error that I have found which survive outdoors and which do not. Before you try this it is always advisable to have a spare offset just in case. Out of doors with a free root run they put on an immense amount of growth in a year and seem to flower all the summer. With the more tender varieties I cut off the rosettes in the Autumn and take them into the greenhouse, by the Spring they have new roots ready for planting. I usually plant out some of my Aeonium as well once the danger of frost has passed. They also grow well out of doors but need to come in for the winter as they are certainly not hardy.
My computer has been in sick bay this week and only returned home today so I will print up this page instead of sending it to Brian for inclusion in the Newsletter.
Zone 9 Convention.
There are still some tickets available from me or from Bob for the Zone 9 Convention in Hardwicke, Gloucester, on April 18th. It should be a good day with interesting talks and lots of good plants for sale. Tickets cost £10 each to include morning coffee, lunch and afternoon tea.
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