Pinguicula Unboxing

Group shot of the plant corner.

I’ve been waiting all morning for my package from Gem State Carnivores to arrive. Customer service has been excellent. He replies quickly to inquiries and shipping was fast. I bought 3 pings from him: P Weser, P emarginata x jaumavensis, and P laueana x potosiensis.

unpacking process

The pings were super well packed. So well packed, that I could barely get into it! There was a lot of cutting involved. The pings were healthy and a good size. The p emarginata x jauvamensis is in flower and pushing new buds out. I love the little white flower with pink veining.

Pinguicula emarginata x jaumavensis flower
Ping group shot 🙂 In their new window sill home

The new plants were potted up in 2/3 peat and 1/3 perlite and the bottom was lined with a little bit of sphagnum. My first 3 came potted, so it was my first time seeing the roots. They are quite shallow and dinky–a little silly looking because you wonder how it’s supposed hold a plant in place.

On a side note, the serracenias are waking up. I bought a dormant mystery rhizome on a recent order from California Carnivores. Can’t wait to see what it is!

Are your carnivores waking up for the spring yet?


aquatic acquisitions

12g Long 2/28/16

It was an exciting few days. My aquariums haven’t seen additions in a while…not surprising, seeing how it is quite full of fish and plants. However, sometimes there’s just something irresistible at the LFS.

Cryptocoryne sp. “Flamingo” There are some things that one thinks

German tissue cultures recently arrived at my LFS, which included some popular plants like UG  and montecarlo. It’s hard to get excited by it when you own low tech tanks…but I should be able to keep a Crypt alive right? The plants come in a little hospital jello cup. You can loosen the agar in some water and plant it right up. The Crypt Flamingo seems to be a solid clump, but other plants should be much easier to separate. In fact, the instruction just tells you to cut up the mass of plants to the portions you want. Can you spot the little pink plant in the 12g?

Emerald Dwarf Rasbora (Celestichthys erythromicron) still in LFS bag

The LFS also had Emerald Dwarf Rasboras (actually a Danio) hinding in with the celetrial pearl danio and the price wasn’t even on the tank yet. But due to my propensity to stare very closely at fish, I totally spotted them, and then I had to get them. They were a little expensive, but when are you going to ever see more, right????

Anyway, I took them home, and it turns out they are super fun to watch. They colored up and adjusted quickly. They are pretty aggressive eaters compared to their new tank mates, CPDs and dwarf corydoras. The cherry shrimp can be jerks though. It seems they like to swim around lower and with more of a wiggle than CPDs. They are about the same size, and share a giant mass of moss surrounding a sad Japanese temple ornament with no issues.

With that said, I had gotten 3, but I went back and got a couple more before they were spotted by other people.

If I had a bigger tank, I would have totally snatched up some celebes rainbows too. Those guys were purty.

Anything new lately at your local fish store that  you couldn’t pass up?


Some people just can’t help themselves


I don’t know why, but while at the garden center, I bought a little snail that hangs over pots. It looked so cute, even though we don’t like most real ones in the garden. Ironically, when I’m stooped below it working on something, and I catch a glimpse of it, it scare the poop out of me until I register what it is.

Crassula mesenbryanthemoides

Isn’t this little guy cute? He has the longest name ever. I bought him last week.

Top left: mystery Stapelia; Middle Left: Jellybean plant (Sedum rubrotinctum); Bottome Left: mystery plant; Top right: mystery sempervivum?; middle RIght: mystery catus (opuntia?); Bottom Right: Senecio stapeliformis

I bought the above plants this weekend…I know, it was a little overboard, but some of them I have always wanted, some were interesting, some were just darn cute. The stapelia is a little furry, any idea what it might be? Help with ID with any of the mystery plants would be appreciated.

repotting time

Some of the soil was a little disturbing, so I was eager to repot. The senecio stapeliformis had suspicious (and gross) looking orange eggs on top of the soil…


I got a lot of mystery plants today, any idea what they are?

Winter Blooms

Left Top NOID phal (maybe Pinlong Cherry?); Right top Tolumnia Tequila Sunrise; Left Middle: Masdevallia Angel Tears; Right Middle: Brassavola nodosa; Left bottom: NOID peloric Phal; Right bottoms NOID white Phal

These are some recent winter blooms. The phals are actually ones that haven’t bloomed since 2 winters ago, and I had forgotten what they were. There’s one more NOID forgotten Phal about to finish opening it’s first bloom. Since this weekend, the last bloom on the Brassavola nodosa has opened up.



Weekend projects: repotting Dendrobium kingianum (cross?)

Dendrobium kingianum (cross?) in bloom

Some weeks ago, I got this plant at Orchid Fever in Culver City. Unfortunately it didn’t come with a tag, which is a shame. I am kind of hoping that it is a cross because it will probably bloom more easily next year. Dendrobium kingianum is notoriously hard to rebloom. I asked the lady there why there aren’t tags, and she said the supplier refuses to because it’s extra cost. Lame. They think it’s lame too.

Well it finished blooming. It smelled wonderful while it lasted, very sweet floral smell. It was potted in pro-mix and the new growth was starting to root, so I decided to repot it this weekend.

I hate promix.

I loosened most of the promix in a bucket of water, and because the roots have grown in so close together, a lot of it was stuck at the top. I had spray it at the sink in the kitchen with a bucket underneath as I don’t have access to a hose outside. I then potted it up in fine-ish kiwi bark with perlite that I bought at SVO during their open house and some sphagnum moss on top. Unfortunately I didn’t think there would be this many roots, so I wasn’t really able to upsize the pot very much. The new pot is sightly wider, but it still fits in the decorative pot.



new growth! There are four of them. 

I will let it recover indoors for a while and then I will put it outside, now that I have a shade cloth up.

Spring is here…in Southern California

spring is here
Top left: Oncidium Twinkle “pink profusion”; Left left top: Giant NOID Cattlya; Left Left bottom: Masdevallia Angel Tears; Left Right top: Pink root growth tip Neofinetia (aka Vanda) falcata; Left Right bottom: Paphiopedilum Makuli-Curtisii Maudiae x Maudiae Napa Valley; Top Right: NOID Phaleanopsis; Bottom Left: NOID Miltoniopsis (x2!); Bottom middle: Brassavola Nodosa; Bottom Right: NOID Compact Cattlya

Spring is here. There is tons of new growth going on in orchid land 🙂 It feels nice when you grown them yourself.

What’s growing at your house?

some blooms coming in the aquarium


Anubias barteri bud
the last bud

Surprisingly, my Anubias barteri decided to put out a bud one after another. I counted myself as lucky when I saw the first one. The bloom doesn’t last very long, only a few days, then it starts decaying, at which time I snipped it off. To my surprise, someone else decided to joing the party…

Can you spot the bud? It’s smashing up against a leaf. Bucephalandra Dark Centipede

These guys are under a light with minimal ambiant sunlight during the day. I have no idea when they know to flower…

How do they know when to flower?