Tuesday, May 27, 2008

"Michelin Man"? succulent

Over at Scientific Blogging", and at number of other sites, they've announced a list of the ten best new species of 2007. One of the items is a new succulent species, Tecticornia bibenda. It's been dubbed the "Michelin Man", but I think the people who gave it this name had probably been celebrating a bit too much. But it is a neat succulent from Western Australia. It's conservation status is P-3 - "taxa which are known from several populations, at least some of which are not believed to be under immediate threat (i.e. not currently endangered). Such taxa are under consideration for declaration as ‘rare flora’, but are in need of further survey."

The genus consists of quite a few species of salt-tolerant shrubby plants from Australia.

Sunday, May 25, 2008

New nursery helper

Ladybug and Osita now have a new nursery helper, Osita's mama, Kiani. We've only had her a little over a week, but she's certainly fitting in. I'll have a mother/daughter picture up as soon as I get them to stay still long enough...

Echinopsis 'Stars & Stripes'

I used to be pretty negative about Echinopsis flowers. They'd show up and then be gone almost before you had a chance to see them. Nice, but hey? But then there some of the cultivars! This old standard is 'Stars & Stripes', a Paramount hybrid. This flower lasted a full 2 1/2 days and wow! And, even better, the flowers just keep coming and coming. I wish I had more room in the greenhouse.

Saturday, May 24, 2008

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

And today the weather will be?

A few days ago, we broke records for this time of the year with 98F weather. Today it's raining and 60F. And, of course, overcast. A week ago, rush to get the shade cloth up on the greenhouses. Today, take it off so the plants, who thought it was summer, can get some light. The cacti were having a blast and will probably be a little dejected today!

This early heat spell was a bit unusual. Can you believe, Tillamook, on the Oregon coast (which is usually cooler than us) reached 100F (actually 105) two days before Phoenix, Arizona broke the 100 degree mark. Go figure!

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Eriosyce senilis

Before we left on our road trip, I said I would upload a photo of Eriosyce senilis (syn. Neoporteria senilis) with the flower fully open. This is on a different plant, one of the smaller ones we have, and - wow! I can't speak for you, but these always catch me by surprise every Spring.

Monday, May 5, 2008

3500 miles in 8 days

We're back from our road trip for new nursery stock. And, you know, when you're on that last leg, driving up that long stretch of I-5 freeway through the Sacramento valley, some questions/observations just pop into your head. Like, why is it that the California highway department can't simply say "road repair ahead" instead of "roadway rehabilitation" ahead?!? And why do they have to keep reminding us, over and over again, to "Stay on Pavement"? It would seem to me that most people would prefer to stay on the pavement when driving on a freeway at 65 mph or higher. Or, is it a common occurrence for California drivers to drive off onto the grass at that speed?

Or maybe these seem like profound questions only after driving 3500 miles and visiting 12 or more cactus nurseries in 8 days.

At any rate...we're back!