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Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Cleaning Up For A New Year

Can't believe it's Christmas already and 2012 is coming to an end. Guess the world didn't end after all, haha. 2013 will be a whole new year, and a whole new experience for me since I've finally finished school. Since my SPM results will only be announced in March 2013, I have 3 months of freedom before having to decide on my future. Hopefully I can still find time to blog and garden after that.

Also, sorry again for the inactivity for the past few weeks since I've been busy rearranging and cleaning up my messy roof garden. It's tough work, but the results are worth it.

This is how it looked like before.


And this is what it looks like now.

I've tried to divide the plants into a few sections to make it neater than the jungle it was before. 


I've moved my hibiscus plants and edibles to this corner. The freshly filled pots will be used to germinate more edibles and annuals.


Here's the orchid section, reserved for my growing collection. It's shadier and less exposed to the elements, so I can easily control the growing conditions of the more finicky orchids. 


This section is for a more exotic look, so I'm filling it with vines and shrubs, such as hoyas, the nong nooch vine and datura. There's still room for more haha.


Here's my new lily pond, complete with fish, shrimps and a frog. Currently there's only 2 juvenile waterlilies, though I'm hoping to add more aquatics. Behind the lily pond, is a new rack for my nepenthes. My collection is gradually recovering, and hopefully stays that way.


This section is reserved for my carnivores, a shelf and a minibog. It's still kind of messy, but I'll be arranging them soon. The sarracenias are growing nicely though the pitchers are drooping due to the heavy rains filling them to the brim with water.


This shelf will be reserved for foliage plants, bromeliads and tillandsias, and ferns, since it receives more shade than the other areas.


Last but not least, here's where I place the miscellaneous plants, mostly sun-loving plants, since this area receives a lot of direct sun.

By the way, I'm wishing all my blog readers and fellow bloggers a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year! Have a wonderful time.

Until next time!

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Freedom

Finally, all those sleepless nights are over! I'm done with my SPM examinations (technically, still left with an Art paper, but that's relatively easy) and I can get back to full-time blogging again. Blogging and gardening would also be a good way to stop me from worrying over my results haha.



Also, I've been nominated by Kimberly of Garden in Paradise for a Beautiful Bloggers award. Fortunately, I'm free enough to accept the nomination and blog about it now. Well, here goes the 10 questions:

1.What would you do if you won $10,000 tomorrow? Remodel my garden and buy more plants, and save some for my education.

2. Best lifetime moment?  My best lifetime moment was when I had the opportunity to go to Sg. Buloh, a haven for plant  enthusiasts, 2 years ago. Still waiting for another chance to visit again.

3. Are you happy? At this moment, I'm over the moon!

4. Do you prefer Facebook or Twitter? Facebook, hands down. I don't even have a twitter account.

5. If you could change something in your life what would it be? My social awkwardness haha.

6. What is your biggest vice/habit in life? Plants, of course. I can spend more than an hour in my garden just looking at them.

7. What is a good point about you? When I feel like doing something, I strive for perfection. A negative point? I tend to procrastinate sometimes, haha.

8. What is your most embarrassing lifetime moment? Too many! Anytime I have to do something with lots of people watching, I'll tend to mess up and feel embarrassed, like when performing a piano piece.

9. What is your favorite flower? Orchids, especially the exotic ones! Still waiting for the day where I get to grow a Paphiopedillum or Grammatophyllum successfully.

10. What's your biggest love in life? Gardening has been my passion since childhood, and I intend to keep that passion burning forever.

Now, time to nominate others for this award.

James Missier of Garden Chronicles
Stiletto of STileTTo
Andrea of Pure Oxygen Generators and Andrea in this Lifetime
Stephanie of Steph's Green Space
Barry Parker of A Sense of Place
Bangchik and Kakdah of My little vegetable garden
lotusleaf of Indian flowers and herbs and gardentropics
Rohrerbot of Las Aventuras
Sunita of The Urban Gardener
Autumn Belle of My Nice Garden

Nominees, if you choose to accept this award, here is what you need to do:

1. Include the award logo somewhere in your blog.

2. Answer the same 10 questions I did, for fun, if you want to.

3. Nominate 10 to 12 blogs you enjoy. Or you pick the number.

4. Pay the love forward: Provide your nominees' links in your post and comment on their blogs to let them know they’ve been included and invited to take part. 

5. Pay the love back with gratitude and a link to the blogger(s) who nominated you
.

Anyway, here are some photos of my garden to share:




My carnivores are flourishing under this rainy weather. The high humidity and low temperatures at night are very optimum conditions for their growth. (Clockwise from top left: A Heliamphora flower, Byblis liniflora flowers, Sarracenia rubra hybrid with Sarracenia x Scarlet Belle, and a Nepenthes inflorescence)







A plethora of blooms from my garden. They always brighten up the garden, and my day, whenever they bloom. (Clockwise from top left: A white Melastoma malabathricum locally known as Senduduk, a white lotus, a Kampung Rose, and half-opened Hoya carnosa blossoms.




And last but not least, my orchid collection, which is growing at a steady rate. I love it when they bloom together in unison to produce a spectacular show of vibrant colours. Some of the orchids is this photo are Dendrobiums, Vandas, Arundinas, Kagawara and Spathoglottis.

Until next time!

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Orchids Abound

I'm back (temporarily) after such a long break from blogging. Currently, I have an 11 day (down to 4 days already) break from my stressful SPM examination, so I finally have an opportunity to update my blog. Hopefully this exam would be over in a flash, and I can get back to my regular lifestyle and schedule. I really miss blogging and my fellow bloggers. Well, just 6 more papers to go before I'm free at last.

Fortunately, things are going quite well in my garden, and I am able to balance between gardening and revisions of my exam subjects. Right now, my orchid collection is taking the weird weather well, with hot sun from morning to afternoon, and heavy downpours from evening to night. Watching them bloom puts a smile on my face, especially after a tiresome day of studying for the exams. Here they are, just in time for the GBBD.












To all Malaysian gardeners (though international gardeners are welcomed too), there is a new gardening group on Facebook, Malaysian Gardeners where gardeners from Malaysia and a few from overseas share knowledge and experience in all matter flora, thanks to the effort of Sherynn Ooi. Feel free to join the group as everyone is welcomed.

Until next time!



Saturday, October 6, 2012

Finite Time

It seems as though January was just yesterday, and yet October has arrived so quickly, it's shocking. And now I'm left with less than 30 days to revise and remember the tons of facts that I've learnt for 2 years. I admit that I'll probably have to allocate a large fraction of my free time to studying and revising, so I won't be able to blog often until my exams are over at the end of November. To all my readers and fellow bloggers, thanks for your support throughout this year, and I hope to be able to continue blogging as soon as possible. This is probably going to be my last post until then.

Here are some pictures to share.



My Orange Jessamine (Murraya paniculata) tree is in bloom right now, probably triggered by the rain spell not too long ago. It fills the night with a lovely fragrance, and unsurprisingly I find moths seeking nectar in the flowers.



This particular dendrobium is a favourite of mine. I just find the veins and colour of the flower to be captivating. 



My hoya carnosa never stops producing new blossoms. The tiny star-shaped flowers look so artificial but cute. The fact that it's a fast grower is certainly a bonus.




These 2 slow-growing carnivores are finally looking established since their rate of growth have gradually increased. I'm happy that my heliamphora has survived for so long since they are disgustingly finicky and have a bad reputation as hard to grow. My nepenthes lowii x campanulata (a hybrid between a difficult lowlander and also a difficult highlander) is growing larger pitchers now. I wonder how long it will take before it reaches its full potential.

Until next time!

Friday, September 21, 2012

Countdown

I'm back after yet another period of inactivity. Finally, my SPM trial examinations are over, though I will still have to prepare for the real deal. Judging from my rather lackluster results, I guess I still have much to study if I hope to score with flying colours. I just hope I don't suffer from a week of indigestion, stomachaches and nausea like during the trials when I sit for the real examination haha (seriously though, really bad time to be ill). 45 days left to revise before the knowledge I've gained since 2011 will be put to test.

Also, I'm happy to say that I have passed my piano examinations. Not really outstanding, but still my days and nights of practising until my fingers hurt paid off.

Anyway, here are some random photos of my garden plants.



























My carnivorous plants are doing quite well. My sarracenia has finally blossomed. Maybe it thinks that it's spring due to the rather cool weather not long ago.





Until next time!

Saturday, August 18, 2012

Surprises

Now that I'm on holiday for a week, I get to spend more time at home and in my garden. After a tiresome day of reading, studying, and web browsing, a stroll in the garden is a wonderful remedy for a throbbing headache. Maybe it's the pleasant colour of green, or the abundance of essential oxygen, but either way, it's still a great place to relax and clear the mind.

Recently, I've bought a few more plants for my roof garden, and there were also a few pleasant surprises which definitely lightened up my day.


My roof garden, still in the process of weeding and rearranging some plants. It's a real improvement since I first started it months ago.





















Just got these two hoya vines, probably H. carnosa (white) and H. pubicalyx (maroon). I love the clusters of small star-shaped flowers.







I've also got a new purple vanda orchid, a white gerbera and two dianthus. Hopefully they'll thrive here and fill my garden with lovely blossoms.


Finally, after almost a year of rest, my medinilla decided to send out not one, but three inflorescence. Maybe moving it to my roof garden, where it's more humid, sunny and have a higher temperature drop at night triggered the blooming. Anyway, I'm glad it finally flowered again.



And this uninvited guest to my garden surely surprised me. Luckily I noticed it before I drenched it with water. I think this is an Oriental Bay Owl (Phodilus badius), a nocturnal owl native to Southeast Asia. It was around 6 pm when I saw it, so maybe it just woke up. I think it's adorable, staring at me as I watered the garden.

Until next time!

Saturday, August 11, 2012

Focus

Finally, I'm back again after a month of inactivity. I feel as if a great burden had been lifted from my chest, as my art project, piano exam and school exam are history now. However, I can't celebrate so soon as this period of rest is transient and I have to prepare for my trial exams for the SPM (a major exam from November to December) during this calm before the storm. I guess I have to make the most of my time to revise a whooping 10 subjects in the following weeks. I hope my absence hasn't made you all lose interest in my blog, as I still hope to continue and interchange knowledge and experience with all of my fellow bloggers.  I just want to say thank you to my consistent readers and fellow bloggers for putting up with my intervals of absence.

But enough talk, here are just some pictures to share.




Some of the carnivores growing in my garden. 







Assorted flowers currently blooming in the garden. 


My rabbit looking rather confused at the camera.