I just thought I'd pass along this deal to anyone out there who reads my blog. Lee Valley tools is where I purchased my awesome potting tray and also my little soil scoop, two tools I absolutely love. The company is running a "free shipping over $40" deal right now. So if your beloved didn't get you what you wanted this year, head over and get it for yourself. :-) Click this link, and you should be redirected. Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!
Last November, I wrote a blog about my visit with Pat Hancock. While there, I bought several leaves from her beautiful plants, and I wanted to share with you the very first bloom from one of those leaves. I haven't been too good about separating babies, since this was a very busy year, so I"m a little behind. That's why it's now a year later that I'm just getting my first bloom. I should've had blooms on these plants a few months ago, at least.
One of the things I learned while visiting with Pat was the unique way that she names her violets. In each cross, she names them using the same letter of the alphabet. So, if two Buckeye's each begin with the same letter, chances are they are siblings out of the same cross. Neat, huh? Of course, everyone else may have already known this but me!
I also wanted to share with you a common phenomenon that happens when wicking violets. On some of my plants that were recently wicked, the plants' roots have grown down the wick and into the water. Some growers choose not to remove those roots, but I do. My main reason for doing it is that the excess roots can actually plug the wick and cause it to stop wicking. Perhaps it is different with large standards, but on the minis, those water roots just aren't necessary. The plants will still grow and bloom just fine.
I’m so excited to share photos with you this week! It has just been absolutely amazing to me to watch these two shelves of newly repotted and wicked plants burst into beautiful bloom! What a fantastic way to spend the cool winter months. The foliage on these plants is still immature; most of them need grooming and shaping/training, but for now, I’m just enjoying the flowers.
As promised, here is a photo of Celina Elegance.
It isn’t exactly a bright, cherry red, although it is significantly redder than I thought it would be. The bud looked plain purple, so I’m happy it isn’t.
And, here are some other bloomers to enjoy . . .
Happy December everyone! It’s been a little while since I wrote, so I thought I’d give another update on our 3 little plants. They’ve really changed since the last time we checked in with them, but one thing is sure. They love being on wicks! Their growth is good, although the plant room has been a little chilly lately. I’ve been fertilizing sparingly with Dyna-Gro Foliage Pro. I’ll be switching to either plain water or perhaps Peter’s the next time I refill reservoirs. I’m not always consistent about what I use, but I always try to leech them out at least every other refill.
We’ll look at Imp’s Christmas Wrap first. I’ll refresh your memory with the description:
Imp’s Christmas Wrap (J. Jackson) Single frilled pink pansy, raspberry glitter edge, raspberry fantasy. Dark green, pointed, serrated, pebbled/red back. Miniature
Does it look like the description to you? Me neither, really. The color of this photograph is really pretty accurate. I would call the color more of an orchid, and I’m not seeing any fantasy in this bloom. Overall, disappointing. The first time I saw the bloom from across the room, I would have sworn it was Lollipop Kid, which I also grow. Here’s the description for that one:
Lollipop Kid (8247) 07/28/1995 (S. Sorano) Semidouble light orchid pansy/dark red-orchid frilled edge. Medium green, ovate, quilted/red back. Semiminiature
<------And a photo for comparison. Pretty close, eh?
<------Here’s what the entire plant of Imp’s Christmas Wrap looks like now.
There are still gaps in the symmetry on this immature plant, but unless the plant shapes up extremely well at maturity, I won’t be keeping this variety. The reason for that choice is because the bloom is nearly identical to Lollipop Kid, whose symmetry is really great already. I don’t need another plant with the same bloom that won’t shape up as nicely if I choose to enter it in a show. Jury is still out on this one, but for now, it’s not looking too promising.
The second one we’ll look at is Tiptop. Here’s the description again:
Tiptop (6646) 6/11/1987 (H. Pittman) Semidouble lavender-pink. Dark green, plain/red back. Semiminiature
This little plant is looking really nice! I counted over 30 blooms and buds on this little thing just this morning. While the flowers are fairly simple, the exact coloring of them is still unique. This isn’t just a flat pink, but with its sparkle and depth and hint of lavender, gives the illusion of a much deeper flower color (photos don't do it justice.) And the plant itself is shaping up all on its own. I’ve given this one limited attention and the same fertilizer as the other ones. I’ll be keeping this little vintage violet, since I think it’ll make a nice show plant. Especially with some training (leaf removal and disbudding/show prep) this one can be a knockout.
The last one we’re watching is Celina Elegance:
Celina Elegance (H. Pittman) Semidouble bright cherry red. Crown variegated foliage. Semiminiature
No blooms on this one just yet, but there is a bud coming, and it doesn’t look at all like bright cherry red to me! We’ll have to wait and see, but so far, the bud looks purple. That’ll be a great disappointment, because just look at that foliage! It’s just beautiful with its variegation and leaf shape. The serrated leaf edges make it look somewhat ruffled, and the plant’s symmetry also looks really promising. We’ll have to wait and see what the flowers look like and if they are produced in enough quantity!
I repotted several more plants since my last entry, and I put most of them on wicks. Now, I have almost two full shelves of plants that are wicked, and they’re all doing very well. Most of them are beginning to bloom, so I’ll share some new photos next time!