Flowers!

Apr. 27th, 2009 07:24 am
ljdaly: (Default)
[personal profile] ljdaly
Guess what?

Flowers! Honest to god! That actually was faster than I expected. I wonder how many of them will grow?

Wow! Flowers! Or, actually, little green horns poking up out of the dirt. Little tiny fingers. Er... maybe it's not flowers. Maybe it's zombies. With horns. Zombie goats. Evil devil zombie goats.

In other news... if a person with a concrete thumb had these azaleas, and she wanted to fertilize them with coffee grounds... just how would she go about doing that? Say, if she already tried mixing them with a little water and ended up with coffee-glop-covered azaleas?  (Such, I assume, are the practical things that people who grew up around dirt probably know instinctively, whereas those of us who grew up around chain link and broken glass have nary a clue.)

(no subject)

Date: 2009-04-27 01:13 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] bogwitch64.livejournal.com
Mix the drained grounds into the top inch or so of soil underneath the bush itself, as wide around as the branches go. As is above, so is below as the saying goes. The bush will have a root system fairly similar to what you see aboveground, so you don't want to ball the grounds all around the trunk base. Water it after you've mixed the grounds into the soil.

And, hey! You knew enough to know azaleas like coffee!

(Did you 'water' the azalea with soggy coffee grounds??)

(no subject)

Date: 2009-04-27 01:32 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] e-underwood.livejournal.com
Coffee grounds? Can I brew my coffee first and then give them the grounds? :-)

(no subject)

Date: 2009-04-27 01:53 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] bogwitch64.livejournal.com
Silly, Erin. Of course not! The azalea gods would get cranky without their caffeine fix. :-P

(no subject)

Date: 2009-04-27 01:55 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] e-underwood.livejournal.com
Next thing I know, they'll want cream and sugar, too!

;-) My azaleas are wimpy little creatures. Will the coffee help pep them up?

(no subject)

Date: 2009-04-27 02:12 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] bogwitch64.livejournal.com
Azaleas like well-drained, acidy soil. Coffee grounds are their version of candy. :) Don't overdue it though. A dose of coffee grounds every month or so is plenty. The acid makes the colors of the flowers brighter, but it doesn't really do all that much for nutrition.

If it's not blooming well, it could be because you don't deadhead the blooms. Tedious. If you don't pinch off a bloom when it fades, one WON'T grow in that spot the next year. Of course, one will bloom elsewhere, but for the most profusion of flowers, deadhead. If the foliage is sparse too, you have one of two (or both) problems. Sunshine and/or water.

Azalea like sunshine, but morning sunshine. Afternoon sunshine is too strong for them. They like well-drained soil, but they also like water, and of course they don't like wet leaves. If you're going to water, do it at the root in the morning. Water only if it hasn't rained in a week. You don't want to encourage shallow roots.

If your azaleas are in afternoon sun, don't get deadheaded AND only get water when it rains, there are things you can do to make them happier and, thus, less spindly. If you want to give them a boost of nutrition, rhododenron food.

All that said, azaleas are actually quite resilient and easy to care for once you've given them a happy home. They'll NEVER die, even if they look spindly; and a little care will perk them up in no time.

(no subject)

Date: 2009-04-27 02:14 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] orogeny.livejournal.com
Holy crap! Thanks for all that. You're an expert!

(no subject)

Date: 2009-04-27 02:15 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] bogwitch64.livejournal.com
Gardening guru for 16 years. Do I get a prize or something? ;)

(no subject)

Date: 2009-04-27 02:17 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] orogeny.livejournal.com
Yes! You get the prize of having me email you all summer. ;D

(no subject)

Date: 2009-04-27 02:30 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] bogwitch64.livejournal.com
Yay! And we have to do a day in NYC, me, you and Diana. Maybe Erin will make it down. I miss you! If we spend the day in the park, maybe you can even bring Molly with you. :-D

(no subject)

Date: 2009-04-27 02:19 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] e-underwood.livejournal.com
You are the best plant mom, ever!

I want you to come to my house and help my plants. :-)

We used to have a massive over shading problem. However, our neighbors cut down a few trees, which I think will help.

(no subject)

Date: 2009-04-27 02:36 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] bogwitch64.livejournal.com
I used to take unofficial care of most of the gardens in my old neighborhood. I planned several, helped to plant two and was the 'go to' girl whenever someone had a plant-ish question. I even considered making it a business for a while. I certainly would have had enough clients to keep me busy!

I miss my shade garden in the other house. I had a rose/fairy garden, my anual pool garden, my greek shade garden, my 'heart' garden planted in a heart-shaped (by accident, if you can believe that) enclosure and all flowers pink, my front anual gardens and my 'wild' garden in the old farmer's wall next to the house. It was something to see. Gorgeous. The people who bought the house tore most everything out and planted petunias and such...blrgh...

Now with my newfound, crazy allergies to all plant life, I'm leery of gardening. I'm hoping to be able to get back to it some this summer, even if it means itching! It's one of the reasons I'm going to wait for fall to finish coloring the last of my tattoo.

(no subject)

Date: 2009-04-27 02:12 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] orogeny.livejournal.com
Yes!

Acid-loving plants, like azaleas, apparently like coffee grounds.

Who knew? Well... tons of people, it seems.

(no subject)

Date: 2009-04-27 02:11 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] orogeny.livejournal.com
Yes! I watered it with coffee grounds! I didn't know!

This poor azalea. Honestly, the stupidity I subject it to. I'm surprised it's still alive.

(no subject)

Date: 2009-04-27 02:13 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] bogwitch64.livejournal.com
Resilient plants...and very forgiving. They're like a big, drooly dog, always ready to forgive for that pat on the head. I'm sure they're fine. Rinse them off and those grounds will end up in the soil after all. :)

(no subject)

Date: 2009-04-27 01:31 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] e-underwood.livejournal.com
Weird! I was just about to send you an email asking if the seeds had sprouted.

Ok, now you can post a picture for your zombie sprouts! Hehe

(no subject)

Date: 2009-04-27 04:35 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] j-cheney.livejournal.com
[livejournal.com profile] bogwitch64 nailed it. Scratch some into the soil.

Starbucks has bags of used coffee grounds (gallon sized, not little) available free at most stores. The "grounds for gardeners program".

(no subject)

Date: 2009-04-27 04:48 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] orogeny.livejournal.com
Hey, my Starbucks had their big bucket out, marked "Grounds for Your Garden," and people filled it with trash.

I thought it was pretty funny. Sad, but funny. People are pigs. Although if they're actually putting their trash in a can, maybe they're not pigs after all.

(no subject)

Date: 2009-04-27 06:49 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] j-cheney.livejournal.com
Good point...

(no subject)

Date: 2009-04-28 12:20 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] melissajm.livejournal.com
Yay, sprouts!

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