Tuesday, July 28, 2009

My tillandsias

I promised Lynn that I would show a photo of my tillandsias so that she could see their sizes. Here's a pic of the tillandsia hanger that DH has just made for me.

Most of my tillandsias are mid-size. But the Tillandsia xerographica which I got from Thailand week before last is really BIG. (The seller was nice to pick up a big one for me. Thanks to him!).
Here's a close-up of T. xero and T. bulbosa, to show their difference in size. T. bulbosa is the one with red spikes.

Tillandsias, like many other plants, can be very addictive. But who can resist such interesting plants which live and thrive in air?

Friday, July 24, 2009

My succulent fountain

Having some success with succulent plantings so far with a mini-dish garden and an outside bed, I attempted another planting. This time it has the form of a fountain.
It didn't take me long to get it done as I have everything at hands already. So I just went ahead and here's the final product.

The "spill" is achieved with sedum burrito. I hope in a few more months, it will grow long enough to cascade and cover the "fountain".

The "water" in the caching pool consists of several acheverias and semperviviums. I also added a handful of NOID sedum to make it look "busy". Then I mulched with pine bark and scattered a few pebbles to brighten up. When the little sedum finally fills in, maybe I will remove the bark mulch.

I'm loving it. It will definitely the object of my gaze for the next few weeks, now!

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

My entry gate planting

Vietnamese people like to live behind fence and entry gate. I guess this is the result of all the turmoils that our country has been through in history. We are the same: we have fence around our properties and high entry gates to our homes.
To soften the hash look, we plant climbing vines over the gates.
In our main home, ĐGT, we have bougainvilla climbing over the gate arbor. This plant thrives on neglect in our climate: the more neglect the more blooms we have, especially in the dry season.

We have both white and pink bougainvillas on the gate there.

In our second home, TSV, we have pyrostegia venusta.

These days, the blooms almost covered the whole gate.

When I come back to our homes from outside and see the blooms on the gate, I just feel warm all over! It's the look of home.

Saturday, July 18, 2009

Hoya obscura blooms

This morning I found my hoya obscura has opened its first umbel.

Obscura is famous for producing numerous peduncles at a time. These peduncles have very long stem and the blooms look like little cotton balls. Very cute.

I got this one as an established plant last year. When I kept it at my "hot" garden, it didn't do much. Since coming to TSV, it has grown quite a lot. Now it looks very full.

This blooming season, there are as many as 15 peduncles of varying stages on the plant. This way, it looks like I can enjoy it for many weeks.
Obscura has a very sweet scent. I'm sure tonight, my little living room will be smell very nice. Just love it!

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Yoohooo... my pet plants have arrived!

I was worrying the plants from Bangkok would get seized at the customs because they were coming without a phyto certificate. But maybe the plant God knew how much I loved plants so He gave order for them to get though safely!
And here they are after getting potted up.
Nepenthes rafflesiana: You should look at how big its pitcher is! And the pitcher is spotted. Incredible!

The only drawback on this species is, according to the experts, it will only hold two fresh pitchers at a time.

Nepenthes bicalcarata, with green pitcher.

Tillandsia xerographica: If you know how small some tillies are, you will be startled at the size of this one. It's huge! Just love it.

Tillandsia pruniosa. This one looks kinda like T. bulbosa, doesn't it?

Is it enough? Well I'm not sure...! You know how it goes with plant-addicts, don't you?

Friday, July 10, 2009

New hoya blooms

It's Hoya kerrii (plain).
I got this plant as cuttings last year and this is the very first time it blooms for me. I'm exceedingly happy about this because I have been wanting it so badly.

The blooms look like chocolate cake decorations. Yum!

But, in spite of the big leaves, the blooms are small as compared to those of carnosa or pubicalyx. And there's no scent either!

Well, you cannot have everything at once, can you?

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

My wind chimes

According to feng-shui, wind chime is used to bring auspicous "chi" to your home. In Vietnam, I see people hang wind chimes not so often at home but at fabric stalls in the market! Perhaps, they wish to have good business or perhaps the sound of the wind chime might make them stay awake on slow business days!
I've got inspired by Melanie's post on her blog (Old Country Garden) re the use of wind chime in the garden. I bought two of them: one to hang at my back porch, the other to hang on one of the trees in my garden.

You just imagine: every morning I would have my coffee sitting on the porch and enjoy life as it comes to this little and remote corner of the world. The air is cool all the year round here so the coffee keeps me warm, while I look in the distance and behold the view beyond, all this time listening to the sound of the wind chime!

Life is good!
If you want to share the sound with me, click here.

Monday, July 6, 2009

Welcoming blooms

As soon as the car stopped to drop me off at the front gate when I returned to TSV this morning, I was welcomed with this.

With ligh rain every day, these vine looks their best in summer time. Don't you like those hanging vines with the orange blooms?
I was also greeted by the cosmos, which is a faithful self-seeder I have here. Their blooms always look cheerful in the morning sun.

The wild rose on the arbor also tried to say "Hi". This is one of the few roses that I have planted in TSV. Although it does have black spots, it produces clusters of blooms that look very very pretty. I hope after this rainy season, the canes will completely cover the arbor. Then I will cut back the water shoots to encourage side growths and blooms.

A little further in the back of the yard, I have a 'look-alike' morning glory, which a friend on GW identified it as "Grandpa Tot". But it has 'split' leaves instead of the 'round' leaves I normally see in morning glory plants on the net. So I don't really know if it is a 'true' morning glory or not. Anyway, the blooms look similar, don't they?

Although I have to travel long hours (7 hrs) to reach TSV every other week, my weariness disappears when I see all the blooms in my garden.

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Updates on my pet plants

Just a little update on my pet plants so far.
First up is my tillandsias. I got these plants last year and had tried different ways to display them and was not happy. I wanted to be able to bring them inside and place them on my mantle so I mounted them onto a piece of driftwood. After some time being in a sunny location outside, they have acquired a nice red tin.

I feel much happier with their look now.
I have recently added another 'pet' plant to my collection. It's a pitcher plant.
This is the second pitcher plant that I have.

This second pitchy cutie is smaller than the first one I have. Its 'pitchers' are also smaller but they're red, whereas those on the first one, N. ventrata, are more greenish.

I'm also waiting for my order of two more pitcher plants and two more tillies from Thailand. It looks like I'm hooked to these cuties!