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Hypertufa Firsts, Ladybug Babies, and Planting Endeavors

Category: Garden Projects | Posted: Mon Jun 11, 2007 7:20 pm

Well, I tried hypertufa again and boy am I pleased! Last week I made a planter. I wanted it to be round and very stone-like. I know I kind of cheated, but after it was dry I soaked it in water with vinegar to help neutralized the alkalinity.

I've put some interesting succulents inside, several types of hens and chicks, burro's tail, bear paws, and some type of sedum (I think). I need to look them up. Some of these things don't usually care for our humidity so I made a special fast draining soil mix to help (I hope). My grandma, who can grow almost anything, but has hen & chick issues, loves hens and chicks, so if I can figure a way to keep them happy then I want to make her one of these for Christmas.

I also plan to work on my mushrooms today and finally grout my balls.

I have been thinking about casting leaves too...the other day I saw some castor plants growing in an empty lot so I think I want to start with one of those leaves.

My cardinal vine is starting to take off in my "Hanging Hummingbird Garden".

I keep rotating the pot to keep the vines growing straight. I can't wait to see some color....and hummingbirds...I hope!

The ladybug eggs are hatching!

This picture shows the little larva as they hatch. They aren't so cute right now, but some day they will be beautiful red ladybugs.

My garden bed is done, well sort of, it needs to fill in. I got so sick of weeding that I laid weed block fabric and is an improvement. I am not fond of mulch...I don't like the way it looks, but these weeds are too vigorous to keep up with!

So this is what's growing: Planted by the tall stump, Grandpa Ott MG's, to the left Porter Weed, Butterfly Weed, and Mystic spires salvia. Across the front-orange marigolds and Decor Zinnias (apricot and chartruse). Behind the marigolds and still tiny, Bravado Echinacea, and Anise Hyssop, then sundown echinacea and behind that, a bicolor butterfly bush, and at the very back peach passion sunflowers. All the way to the right: mexican petunia (purple showers), crossandra (orange marmalade), and more salvia. I know it sounds kind of a mess, but should look better when the plants get bigger. The perennials are still pretty small so the annuals will fill in until they reach their proper size.

I've got two hanging baskets done: they contain baby pink and white impatiens and torenia with some tricolor sweet potato vine to fill in. I am not sure I like the way dh hung them, but at least I can reach them and admire the plants at eye level. I am wishing that I'd added kind of a punch of surprise color because the pink and white is a little bland...I may go back and add some bright purple or blue.

Have a great day!

Last edited: Mon Jun 11, 2007 8:27 pm

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Chitweed wrote on Mon Jun 11, 2007 7:40 pm:

All is very loverly.
How tiny are those ladybug babies? They must be hard to even see...?
Nice camera, but for you to even find them...great eyes! :)


hummingbird3172 wrote on Mon Jun 11, 2007 7:48 pm:

They are a little bigger than the head of a pin. I use my camera for photographing my bead so it gets a lot of practice with small things. The eggs are such a bright yellow that they are pretty eye-catching (this is all in a hanging basket so it is easier to find them). Thanks Chitweed! :-)


eileen wrote on Mon Jun 11, 2007 11:32 pm:

I'm glad you've mastered the art of hypertufu. Your succulent pot is really attractive.
I could do with some of those ladybug babies over here as I've just discovered aphids on my lilies.
I DO hope your cardinal vine attracts lots of hummingbirds to your garden - it's certainly growing fast.
You must take mor piccies of your new garden bed for us as it fills out.


glendann wrote on Tue Jun 12, 2007 5:44 am:

You really do so good for a first time.Your plants are doing so good to.


hummingbird3172 wrote on Tue Jun 12, 2007 1:59 pm:

Thank you, Eileen and Glendann! I have a feeling sometime this summer the hummingbirds will be unable to resist me...I am planting so many things with them in mind!

Glendann, actually I did try another pot that was a terrible disaster...nothing to even show for it...this was my second try. :-)

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