Fear of Clowns

"Faith may be defined briefly as an illogical belief in the occurrence of the improbable."
- H. L. Mencken

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Beautiful things, these are 

I've had a croton on and off for my entire life, but I've never had one bloom!

blooming croton flower

Dave's Garden lists blooming as "inconspicuous/none". I got this specimen from HomeDepot so doubt it's an uncommon variety.

Here's a shot of some of the most erotic parts of my car.

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Friday, May 09, 2008


Pictures from the 2008 Chaitén eruption. Before:


Volcanic ash replenishes soil nutrients.

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Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Three carnivoes 

One's first thought about the plants in this picture isn't "They eat meat."

three carnivorous plants

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Monday, March 31, 2008

Carnivorous plant scorecard 

I intend to collect all species native to North America in the following five genera: Darlingtonia, Dionaea, Drosera, Pinguicula, and Sarracenia. Blue means I have it, purple means I've ordered it.

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Thursday, December 20, 2007

Herb planting day! 

Today my Christmas present to myself came - new and exciting seeds.

This evening, I seeded in rockwool cubes "Greek" oregano, "pesto" basil, rosemary, sage, intoxicating mint, kanna, and sinicuichi. Half of the cubes were soaked in plain reverse osmosis water, half in r/o water with 70 ppm B'cuzz root and 40 ppm gibberellin and pHed to 5.0. The sinicuichi seeds are as small as large specs of dust - I sprinkled these on a 1" thick slice of a large rockwool cube and tried to push some of the specks into the wool with a fork. I can't imagine such small seeds could grow to seedlings on such a minuscule endosperm, so I just used the weak B'cuzz/gibberellin nutrient solution.

I also started some larger non-herbaceous plants - wild dagga and kratom - again experimenting between plain reverse osmosis water and the weak nutrient solution pHed to 5.0. The kratom seeds are as large as the smallest wood sliver you could get under your skin.

The seeds with hard coats - the intoxicating mint and kanna - were soaked in near-boiling water for 2-3 minutes.

Kanna seeds naturally contain a germination inhibitor which gives the species the advantage of a generation of seeds germinating over time. The germination inhibitor can be overcome with gibberellin at a higher dose than I used this time, but as the plant's natural germination inhibitor is water soluble I'm soaking 15 seeds in r/o water. The high concentration of gibberellin required to overcome the germination inhibitor would possibly have unwanted side effects - such as elongation of roots and stems.

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