Saturday, January 31, 2009

Slugs, seeds and sunlight

The blue of the sky is from east to west, and yesterday's grey smothering clouds are replaced with those white and dispersed. The seedlings in the greenhouse are starting to think its spring. I saw this year's first slug in the greenhouse. Killed him, then put out slug bait. A good deal of it in the greenhouse.

Aside from a damping-off preventer I have sometimes used for indoor seed beds, slug bait is the one synthetic thing I don't mind using around plants. Chemical fertilizers and insecticides are a no go, but experience with slugs eating seedlings is painful enough to be grateful for slug bait. I know, I know, there's probably a million methods to kill slugs. I'll clinch on a natural method sooner or later I'm sure, but for now convenience wins out. Anyways, it's a flaky substance; not the kind of thing to get everywhere and poison things.

The Japanese Cobra Lily seeds (Arisaema sikokianum) that I had in their baggie doing a warm startification sprouted, twelve of them, around two or three weeks in. And without their cold stratification. That's what I like. Growing it from seed though, it will be years before I get to see the likes of this.

All eleven of those mystery seeds (picture below) have sprouted.

To which I've revised the riddle (I know, how lame):

Never in my lifetime will you prune me.
I take care of my shape well enough;
besides, though thornless, my leaves are so tough
and lance-like, that I'm sure you will agree,
the merest eyesight will inform the most dumb:
one foot at closest, round my parameter,
is an excellent rule of thumb.

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