Thursday, January 15, 2009

Quality vs. Quantity


I...um...have a reputation. While it may or may not be a bad one, having over 175 plants living in the house during the winter does give some people pause. I've seen my name mentioned in connection with this overabundance of house plants here and there across the blogosphere.

I'm here to set things straight. Just because I have a large quantity of plants doesn't mean they're all worthy of the space they occupy.

Yes, I have been obsessed in the past with plants in general, and I used my obsession to get me through the insanity that is winter in the midwest. I'm not saying I'm over this plant thing, because I don't think I ever will be, but I find that I'm becoming a bit more "selective" about the plants that receive the most attention while being holed up with my kitties and me.


*gasp* Am I sabotaging my own plants? Let me think about that.
..

While I am one who finds it difficult to toss even a pinched-off coleus tip to the compost bin, I'm tired of coaxing petulant plants to perk up. Before the winter is over, I predict the plant count will be down by a few, and that's really okay with me.


Meanwhile, today is Garden Bloggers Bloom Day, when we are supposed to post what we have blooming in our gardens. Amazingly, last January there were English Daisies blooming
outside. This year? Not a chance. If there is anything blooming outside, it's well insulated from view by several inches of snow.


Somehow, I doubt if there are any blooms under that, though. Even as good as snow is at insulating the plants, we are having the coldest temperatures in 15 years right now. As I type this at 11:00 p.m., it is -13°F, on its way to -20°F for the night. Tomorrow's high is to be -1°F. Wind chills may reach -50°F.

With so many plants in the house, you might think I had many things in bloom. Not so! There are several amaryllis that will probably be open next week, but none right now. There is a jasmine that is loaded with little pink buds that will open white one of these days. A few kalanchoes have sparse blooms, but nothing to brag about.


There is that new orchid I bought on Monday.
But there is also another orchid blooming. It opened over a week ago and I was thrilled. This one is a rebloom of an orchid I bought last year. I have photos of its blooms from last March and now here it is, blooming again. It's not the first time I've had an orchid rebloom, but I count myself lucky when it happens.


I'll take one good flush of blooms from a single orchid plant over a whole roomful of other plants any day.


20 comments:

Hilery - Desert Greenhouse Guide said...

Your orchid bloom is gorgeous! I love the combination of pink stripes and spots. I'm officially jealous! I keep putting off getting an orchid for fear of the cats treating it like a buffet line.

Carolyn gail said...

And a beauty it is too, Kylee. Great selection.

Yolanda Elizabet said...

It is quite nippy in your neck of the woods Kylee. Here we've had the coldest spell in quite a while too but now the frost and snow is gone and we're back to dull, wet and grey.

Your garden looks very pretty in its white hat. How are the outsoor kitties faring in this kind of weather?

Your orchid is absolutely lovely!

Lisa at Greenbow said...

I always admire people that can make their orchids rebloom. Heck I admire them just for keeping them alive. I don't do so good with them. This one is beautiful.

patientgardener said...

Gosh 175 does seem alot but then I have goodness knows how many in my little greenhouse and cold frames - some will survive and some wont. I too am becoming more hardened to the losses

flydragon said...

175 !!!! People call you the "crazy plant lady?" Love those orchids though. I'm gonna have to get me one of those.

Rose said...

Your orchid blooms are spectacular! I'm not a houseplant person, but on days like this I wish I had a few more blooms inside to cheer me up. Your yard looks beautiful under its blanket of snow, but winter has overstayed its welcome at my house!

Diana said...

Oh - I know it's cold and you're kind of miserable with this weather, but your snow sure is pretty, Kylee. And your orchid is stunning. I see so many of them in the blogosphere during winter, and and so green with envy. I kill them, but they tempt me everytime I see one posted, especially a beautiful one like yours. Better to leave them to you to nurture!

Nan Ondra said...

White gardens are very trendy, aren't they? (Or maybe they're supposed to be a different kind of white.) Well, at least you have your amazing orchids to brighten your indoor habitat.

Keep warm!

Rick said...

A blooming orchid in snow covered Ohio in January.
Our technology allows us to do remarkable things with plants.
Two hundred years ago, who would have ever thought a blooming epiphyte possible in snow covered Ohio.
Love the orchids.

Robin's Nesting Place said...

I have absolutely nothing blooming this January, not even indoors. Bummer!

I'm so glad I don't have to get out in this bitter cold weather today.

Stay warm!

Kylee said...

Hilery ~ We have three inside cats and they have shown no interest in the orchids at all. They don't bother most plants, only the ones that resemble grass. LOL.

Carolyn gail ~ I don't know if I've ever met an orchid I didn't like. ;-)

Yolanda Elizabet ~ They just said on the noon news that we are one of the coldest areas in the country right now.
The outdoor kitties are doing well! Romie was outside tending to them last night and his hands got cold. He said he just picked up one of the cats and it was so warm, it warmed up his hands. Their coats are unbelievably THICK. So thick you have a hard time parting it to find skin. That's a good thing for them, though!

Lisa ~ I've not been able to get all of my orchids to rebloom, but enough that it hasn't stopped me from buying more! LOL

patientgardener ~ It doesn't seem like there are that many here. They are in clusters, with most of them on the south side of the house where they can get more sunshine. Well, that's not entirely true. Most of them are downstairs in the basement greenhouse. Those will all go outside in the summer.

flydragon ~ Maybe they say that behind my back, but I have been called "The Crazy Cat Lady!" since we have nine cats (inside + outside). Maybe I'm just basically crazy? LOL

Rose ~ Winter has lasted long enough for me, too, Rose! Only two months until spring, though. Seems like forever, doesn't it?

Diana ~ I do love seeing snow outside. If it's going to be winter, give me snow. I've lost a couple of orchids, but they generally do well for me. Not sure why though!

Nan ~ LOL! Oh yes, those white gardens. They just glow in the moonlight.
You stay warm as well! It can't be that warm where you are either!

Rick ~ Two hundred years ago, Lowe's would not have been selling orchids. Two hundred years ago, no one was even living in this Great Black Swamp! And now orchids...
Will wonders never cease?

Mr. McGregor's Daughter said...

Okay, that's what I'll tell myself, I have quality, which is better than quantity. Hah! If only I had something of the caliber of an Orchid. Yours is beautiful. I forgot that I also had something blooming outside last January - a single Lamium flower. I'd be happy to settle for that. Stay warm, spring will come someday.

Gail said...

Kylee,

It is unbelievably cold up there! Unimaginable for us in the mid south!

Lovely orchid, it looks wonderful juxtaposed with the snow!

Take care and keep really warm,
Gail

Carol said...

I like that orchid, it reminds me of peppermint candy for some reason.

Hope you are keeping all those plants warm!

Carol, May Dreams Gardens

Kylee said...

Mr McGregor's Daughter ~ Winter is getting old early on, isn't it? I sure hope it doesn't hang on like last year! Yes, lamium is a tough one, isn't it? Mine isn't blooming now though, unless it's doing its thing under all that snow. Ha!

Gail ~ We're trying to keep warm, Gail! Today it finally warmed up a bit, but I do hear the wind cranking it up a notch or two out there. Ah well, spring WILL get here eventually, if we don't go batty before then!

Carol ~ I can see peppermint candy there, now that you mention it! Yes, the plants are all warm now, but they suffered a bit with our power outage last month. :-( The begonias didn't like that one bit.

EAL said...

Kylee, I would love to see where you put all 175 of those houseplants. You are my hero.

My dendrobium is reblooming--there are buds-but it'll be a while.

Kylee said...

EAL ~ Okay, I'll assemble a collection of photos and post them. It might take awhile! LOL

Kerri said...

I can so relate to you not even wanting to toss away a pinched-off coleus tip. Take heart dear Kylee..you're not alone in your obsession! :)
But yes, we do get tired of the under performers, or near dead-looking plants, when there are so many healthy looking specimens to lavish our attention on.
Your orchid is gorgeous and much appreciated!
I enjoyed reading the 175 plant post too :)
We're very white here too, although a tad warmer today, with gentle snow falling.

Shady Gardener said...

Kudos on your newest orchid blossom! That indeed is quality! :-) I visited my Aunt MEA this past weekend. Her orchid had a new branch with many blossoms. Two other branches were setting new buds. I'm trying not to be "green-eyed!" ;-)

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