It’s pretty late for me to just be getting my tomato seeds planted, but the crazy long winter has just got me out of whack and off schedule. I usually have them already going and about four or five weeks old by now ready to harden off by the last expected frost date in my area, which is about April 18th in my zone 6.

It’s been looming over my head and I just kept putting it off. But really with the colder weather later this year, I think I’ll be fine. I usually don’t get a ripe tomato until mid July anyway. Once they get in the ground, they will take off.

I went on a photo frenzy while taking pics of my soon to be seedlings. My greenhouse suffered this winter for sure. Last year, my heater was malfunctioning but this year, there just wasn’t a lot of sunshine. I could really tell a difference in the way things were blooming, or didn’t bloom I should say.

I thought I’d share some successes and failures since the last time you saw my beautiful and green lush jungle like greenhouse. Here’s a hint, it’s more like the burnt prairie these last couple months. My plants are ready for their vacation outside where they will waste no time to soak up the sunshine, fresh air and humidity. They’ll have a new flush of leaves before I know it  🙂

But… until then… it’s the Good, Bad and the Ugly.

Here we see a little leaves coming back on this pretty little tropical plant that can take the shade. Apparently, it didn’t like the few times I must’ve forgot to water it. Oh well, it looks like all is forgiven.

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Below is some sage being resurrected. Somehow I managed to kill off the begonia that shared the pot last summer. I think it got too much water. I might mention that perhaps I’m losing my mind because the above plant and this one are only about 12″ away from one another yet one got too much water and one not enough. I guess I should pay closer attention.

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Ahh… so here we come to the babies… the star of the show and reason for the post. The seedlings. Tomatoes and peppers.

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What’s that you say? You can’t see anything? Well, dear friend, that’s because this is a picture of dirt. yep. Cause I’m crazy like that. Enjoy!

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Okay, so here we have a nitrogen starved salvia. I have to say I was happy this made it through the winter. I adore this plant. It has bright red flowers that go gang busters all summer long in the hottest most obnoxious dry spot that I put it in a couple years ago. Now it doesn’t live through the winter, but it reseeds itself like there is no tomorrow. I dig those little suckers up and put them all around. Some made it into pots last year and here is the proof. I have to really watch all summer long, because it will seed and grow all the time and my hubby will mow right over them! I can spot a seedling 10 feet away, but he is blind as a bat and uses that as his excuse. >:(

salvia plant

 

Next we have my Umbrella plant, a version of one that is. I think this is called King Tut. If this guy looks familiar it’s because he lives his life in my koi pond all the long days of glorious summer. He sits there happily with usually a frog or two in his pot. I prop his pot up with a cement block under it in the water so it will skim the top. Hey, do you wanna see my koi pond from last year? I’ve got a video of it with all the birds chirping, frogs doing whatever they do and fish swimming. It’s just under 2 minutes. Go see it here but then come back and finish reading this 😉

umbrella plant

 

Doesn’t everyone have a corkscrew weeping willow growing in their greenhouse? This actually has special meaning to me. My mom, whom I miss more than words can say, loved weeping willows. She had both the normal and this corkscrew variety. She snapped off a branch and stuck them in milk jugs of water and would root them and give them away or plant them. She gave one to my best friend, Kelly. One day, while mom was still with us, a big storm came and lightning struck her corkscrew weeping willow. She happened to be about 10 feet from it! Thankfully, she wasn’t hurt. But my dad said she moved faster than he’d ever seen her move getting back in the house! So it killed the tree. Mom got sick not long after and never got another one. Kelly, snapped off a branch of hers (that came from Mom’s) and rooted it and put it in a pot and gave it to me. Here it is now. I’m going to find a special place for it in my yard this spring.

corkscrew weeping willow

 

And here is the good… I thought I had lost this canna but it has come back. Yay!

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One thing you can count on in a greenhouse is geraniums. They are a staple. Come usually about February the sun gets higher in the sky and these babies just start blooming and blooming! But this year, it has been much later. I don’t think we’ve had as much sunshine as we normally do. I just love geraniums anyway though whether they bloom or not, I love their smell, pretty shaped leaves and of course their flowers . Mom always had scented geraniums like rose, chocolate and mint. I had one that grew in my sunroom in another house years ago and that thing grew about 5 feet tall. I eventually killed it. I think I will get one this year since they make me so happy.

greenhouse geraniums

 

Here’s another shot of the Umbrella plant and another variety of geranium I’ve had for several years. It has bi-color pointed leaves (not rounded) and orangey red spikey flowers. Very showy. Below that is a verbena, another tough plant that I love.

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This one, I can’t remember what it’s called but it gets the most beautiful reddish dark purple leaves in the hot sun. No flowers to speak of really, but gorgeous foliage. It does flower because I get occasional volunteers from it. Little gifts ❤  Also, it’s easy to snap off and root. Although it is spindly now, it will get nice and lush in a hurry. See those baby leaves? awwwww

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Here we have “Diamond Frost” euphorbia. What a happy little plant. It’s managed to hang on. It believes me when I tell it that vacation is coming soon. This is such a dainty plant, I just love it. There is also a blush variety, but I like the white.

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Here is one of my gangly geraniums that is years old. Barely hanging in the soil but who could get rid of such a fighter?! Come on, that’s a beautiful cascading plant. When it flowers, it is brilliant fuchsia.

cascading geraniums

 

Another verbena perking up. Happy and tough.

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Asparagus fern or Spring-rei as I call it below is older than I can remember. It’ll look very handsome soon with summer flush of growth. Just can’t hardly water these guys enough. In the white pot is a vine coming back to life called mandevilla. I think this one is Red Riding Hood. I need to repot it with some good soil, it didn’t do very good last year. To the right of that in the faded big green pot with the big stalk and little green leaves at the bottom is my Brugmansia. I call it Datura or Angel’s Trumpet. This is a lovely purple and white variety. I love it, unfortunately, the mealy bugs love it more.

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The little begonia that could… leggy but alive! I’ll cut her down to her knees and she’ll fatten right up.

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Some pretty little sedum peeking up.

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Here is another beloved geranium. I do wish they stayed full and lush more than one season. I can’t bear to get rid of them. Look at these beautiful wine colored flowers. I have tried to cut off starts with no luck, so I just keep the whole plant until it looks like a very bad science experiment and screams “Feed me Seymour!” It has to be completely brown and shriveled before I give them up. I know. I need to talk to someone, don’t I? I’m a plant hoarder.

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I mean come on! *Gasp!*

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Spikes in the back, probably pups off the mother plant from years ago. Hard to kill these guys. Not as hard to kill the lantana next to it though 🙁

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Ah look who’s wanting to join me in the greenhouse. It’s Mocee Mimosa Moxey. My sweet little tuxedo cat.

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*cue Clint Eastwood whistling music* here is the bad…  wah wah wahhhhhhh

The mealy bug infestation that won’t EVER go away that adores the Datura. That is a big seed head with hundreds of viable little seeds in there. The white sticky cottony looking stuff is the mealy bug goop. Little bastards.

mealy bug infestation

 

Ahhhhh my beauties from last year… I love my tropical plants. Banana and Bird of Paradise. OH and a little fairy catching up on some reading.

Tropical plants, banana plant and bird of paradise

 

Just waiting for this red hibiscus to burst open!

hibiscus bud

 

My Bougainvillea that was playing oppossum the last month or so decided to make a grand entrance. I have to watch when I walk by this bad boy. He’s got thorns that will take out an eye!

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As to not make you think my hibiscus was doing just wonderful, here is the rest of the story…  But it’s making a come back.

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So in full disclosure, I took these photos last Friday and meant to post this as a weekend post. Oops. But happily, now you get to see what just 2 days does to the babies and this beautiful Bougainvillea (below). The previous photo of this flower was taken Friday around noon and this one was taken Sunday about noonish I’d say. Wow, huh?

Bougainvillea hanging in pot

 

Oh and looky here… 2 days brought me a sign of life. Look closer. See it? Stretching it’s wee little head up?

tomato seedling popping up

 

This one is off to a good start already!

cherry tomato seedling popping up

 

I hope you’ve enjoyed my spring greenhouse tour. I’ll share more later on. I’ve got an art show this coming Saturday. A new one for me called Earth Day Art Crawl in Evansville, Indiana on the grounds of the West Franklin St. library. My first one of the year! I’m excited and have a ton of stuff to finish before it gets here. Come by and see me if you’re in the area. I’ve got lots of new paintings for sale that haven’t been offered anywhere yet. Then in two weeks I’ve got another art show, Arts in Harmony, a 2 day show. I’ll share more about that later.

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some of my paintings

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