Succulent Ramblings

I like to ramble on about my plants... and other things! My hope is to log the progress of plants and talk about my frustrations with others. So, tune in, turn on, or drop out (if you find it boring!)

Friday, December 30, 2016


I must get this down before my excitement fades.  My mind isn't a steel trap like Mom's, so it won't be as clear in 6 months or a year and I want to be able to look back and feel this excitement!

I worked today.  And it started out well, with 5 of my favorite guys... But it's what happened at the Lincoln airport that made the rest of the day truly outstanding, so that's what I'm going to describe...

So the 6 of us took vehicles over to the Lincoln airport.  It was around lunchtime, so it was decided that everyone would do whatever they wanted for lunch, so I picked up something at Casey's and ate on the road.  I was the 2nd to arrive in Lincoln, so I sat down with the guy who got there just before me (Tom) and we chatted.  Tom and I were sitting a couple seats apart, facing the same direction (I think it was west).  Larry showed up and sat next to Tom facing north.  Then Harvey showed up and sat across from Tom and I facing east.  Then Gordon showed up and sat next to Larry, facing north.  This is important only because Tom and I were facing these 4 paintings that are the focus of this story.  We were all waiting for Bill to show up...

So about the 4 paintings...  They were interesting, but I won't go into a detailed description because that's NOT really important, but they were in a "t" - one above another, then two off to the sides.  They were obviously meant to go together, kind of abstract, very colorful, but it was the bottom middle one that I especially liked and kept being drawn to.  As I chatted with the guys and we waited for Bill, my attention kept going to the bottom one - it was shades of burgundy, one of my favorite colors.  Suddenly, my eye was drawn to a window off to the left because a plane was taking off and flying at a 45 degree angle.  "Looky there!", I thought!  My eye went back to the burgundy painting and it was swaying back and forth, back and forth...No one was near it.  There were doors nearby to outside, but no one had come in, so a wind gust wasn't the cause.  Back and forth, back and forth. 

Just before Bill showed up, the Enterprise lady came over and asked if, since were were waiting, one of us could get a car for them from a dealership as she had no one to go get it.  Gordon volunteered and off he went.  Bill showed up and now we were waiting for Gordon to come back so we could head back to Omaha.  And there was the painting, going back and forth, back and forth, back and forth.  After about 5 minutes, I commented to Tom (who is facing the same direction), "Isn't that weird how that painting is rocking back and forth?"  He looked and said, "Huh, I guess a gust of wind must have got it going."  I said, "No, no one has come through those doors!"  All I got was a "huh"...

For a full 20 minutes after that, this painting continued to rock back and forth.  Never slowing down like it was losing momentum.  At about the 15 minute mark, I went to the counter where the Enterprise lady was and said, "Have you ever seen that painting over there rock back and forth like that?"  She said, "What?"...looked and said, "Ok, now THAT'S weird!  No, I've never seen that happen before!"  I said, "Cool!  I guess that means it's a message to me!"

And it continued to rock, back and forth, back and forth, never losing any momentum!  We got up to go get our cars and wait for Gordon to show up out in the parking lot, and as I passed the Enterprise counter, I told the lady, "Would you check that out in 10 minutes and see if it has stopped?  I'll ask you about it next time I'm here!"  And she said, "Yeah, I'll be interested to see if it does stop!"

Now, if you have an explanation that makes sense about this, OTHER than a spiritual message, I urge you to share it with me!  I think I've been nudged by one (or perhaps many) of my friend(s) on the other side!  YAY me!👍

Saturday, December 10, 2016

163 days and...

163 days since we sold the business.  I'd like to say I'm getting bored, but I'm not really.  I know I want to do something else, but I'm kind of waiting and watching.  I think something will come up that screams "THIS IS IT!!!"

In August, I went to Des Moines with Kathy to help judge the Mid-Iowa club's show.  Well, on our trip there, she was telling me that Ken (her husband) had been working at Enterprise for awhile.  I asked doing what, and she said they basically drive cars from one location to another - part time.  It sounded like something I might like to do "in the interim", while I wait for the universe to drop the next thing in my lap, so I applied.  And I started with them in early October, and I LIKE IT!  It's just minimum wage, mind you, but it is stress free, I'm meeting lots of nice people.  I've morphed into the 10:00 crew and I like it.  I work with a lot of the same people, but yet I get to work with someone new almost every day.  There are a few strange cats and oddballs, but for the most part, I like it.  But I've still got my eye out for the "next thing."  And it might be as simple as finishing my book.  I just need to get past this block about where it's going next (or more about how I will get it there!)

But now, I'm having a little "plant block" as well.  I'm just feeling overwhelmed by my plants, and I'm seriously considering choosing 100 favorite Hoyas and getting rid of the rest.  Or letting them die off naturally, meaning the ones that aren't doing that fantastic for me, just give them up.  Maybe ship them off to Marco in Florida and see if his climate will fix them up...I don't know.  But I think I'm experiencing some plant burnout, because I'd almost rather TALK about them than actually take CARE of them.  

So I just went out to water for a few minutes and found megalaster all but dead.  Strike it from my list!  I whacked it back to nothing and I will set it on a windowsill somewhere, and if it decides to make a serious comeback, I'll consider putting it back in my collection.  But for now, that brings my number down to... about 200 species.  TOO MANY!  And that doesn't include ANY of my succulents or cacti!

Going through my list... these are the ones I don't want to part with, and how long I've had them, maybe some comments about why I want to keep them.  I put an * by the ones that I absolutely can NOT live without under ANY circumstance...

aldrichii (10 years)
amoena Java (7 years), up-potted this year and seems to be happy!
australis (11+, 0006 & Lisa just a year), I like them all!
Ban Ngong Ngoy (3 years), just because it blooms so easily
bhutanica (10 years), because it's an aggressive grower!
callistrophylla (8 years), leaves of course
cardiophylla (4 years), nice sized, shiny leaves
carnosa rubra (16 years), nothing special except it came from Bob Smoley
all the other carnosas, K8, KP, KQ, ssp. carnosa,except Chelsea which is ehhh
caudata (3 years), if I can get the dang thing to grow for me!
Chicken Farm (2 years), stunning leaves!
clandestina (2 years), interesting, super succulent leaves
dasyantha (6 years), because it looks so beautiful and flowers easily
*deykeae (7 years), if I had to get rid of all but 5, this would be one of the keepers!
DS-70 (13 years), one of my old favorites - love how succulent it gets
el-nidicus (7 years), finally growing and I love the rubbery leaves
finlaysonii (7 years), gorgeous leaves, pretty flowers
fungii (11 years), large, veined, matte leaves, huge flower clusters
glabra (1 year), I'd like to get the large leaf clone as well
hueschkeliana (10 years), it's a tiny gem
inconspicua (8 years), easy to grow, not a space hog, succulent leaves
'Iris Marie' (10 years), just 'cuz I want to get the dang thing to bloom!
'Jennifer' (8 years), for it's magfificent leaves and perfect flower balls!
'Joy' (3 years), the leaves knock my socks off!
 kanyakumariana (6 years), great name, cute leaves
kerrii (forEVER), all clones are worth keeping, but only one of each
Ko Chang (2 years), super succulent and splotchy leaves
*krohniana (3 years), all 3 clones, love the heart shaped succulent leaves
Kumning Kina (6 years) if I can figure out how to grow it well
*latifolia & loyceandrewsiana (10 years), I'm putting them together next year
longifolia (?), easy bloomer, long leaves
lucardensiana (3 years), love the silver dollar sized round leaves
*macgillivrayii (10 years), love the super succulent, almost black leaves
*macrophylla (16 years?), my #1 favorite of all time!
mac variegated (8 years), just because it's a mac!
macgregorii (3 years), because it took me so long to get it growing nice!
meliflua (8 years), for the outstanding flowers
memoria (4 years), fantastic leaves, hangs beautifully
merridithii x crassicaulis (8/6 years), both clones have outstanding leaves
merrillii (8 years), I love it growing in my Chinese teapot
micrantha (7 years), a compact, easy to grow species
'Minibelle', shepherdell & shepherdii (10/9/? years), love their long leaves!
 mitrata... if I can learn to grow it well!
nicholsonaiae (11 years), but only one!
'Noel' (1 year), because it looks so much like 'Joy'
'Nong Nooch' (8 years), very cool leaves, nicer than fin
obovata (forEVER), probably just the silver flecked clone
*onychoides (?), for the almost black, succulent leaves
pallida (8 years), love the compact way it grows!
polystachya (6 years), because it's so similar to macrophylla
pottsii (7/3/>1), 3 clones, nice thick leaves!
pubicalyx (6 cultivars), beautiful flowers, nice growers - cut back on how many and how big... (*PS)
'Rebecca' (4 years), only because it's my $200 Hoya!
*retusa (4 years), because it's so weird
rotundiflora (6 years), for it's square leaves (need a new one!)
*sigillatis (8 years), for it's uniquely pink and splashy leaves
surigaoensis (3 years), outSTANDingly large and shiny leaves!
tjadasmalangensis (1 year), love the large leaves!
treubiana (2 years), love the long, thick and shiny leaves!
tsangii (3 years), love how delicate it looks
verticillata (9 years), both green and variegated, easy bloomers!
vitellinoides (4 years), very, very veined leaves knock me out!
*wayetti (forEVER), old favorite - both green and variegated
wibergiae (3 years), love the subtle silver flecking
coriacea (6 years), it's grown out to be large and TRIED to flower last year
crassicaulis (7 years), it's looking really good since in the SR
juannguoiana (5 years), a nice looking and succulent species

That's around 90... it would give me a lot of room!  I'm sure as I pare it down, I'll find some I'd rather keep than not, and if I limit myself to 100, that means I have to let one on the list go to keep another.  I think this would be a good thing for me to do as I will appreciate the ones I have more, and it will feel like less of a burden to take care of them...

More about it later...