November 7, 2019

I am adjusting to the earlier sunrise with the return to standard time.  The sky begins to lighten at 5.30-5.45 in the morning.  For a string of weeks the temperatures have been mild, and I can work early.  Just wish that rain would come soon.  Last year the rainy season did not begin until Thanksgiving, but when it began . . .

I inherited two cactuses who were immigrants from Rancho Murieta, and to my joy and delight they are now budding.  Perhaps I will have a Christmas cactus or two, or maybe an Advent cactus.  Those cactuses and the kalanchoe continue to bloom in the conservatory that I created in the main room, next to floor to ceiling windows and lots of sun.  The tile floor also radiates heat.  I have not yet turned on the furnace.

What I read about kalanchoe care is to water when the soil feels dry without wetting the leaves. trim dead or wilting flowers at their stems, and fertilize during periods of new growth.  I should be able to do that.  The white flowers are a great joy in the morning.  

The polka dot plant has begun a growth spurt, longish stems with buds and flowers.  This growth pattern is new.  The stems lean towards the sun naturally, I turn the pot from time to time.  I fertilized with the weekly watering today.

The correopsis that I trimmed to the ground a few months ago has surprised me with a second bloom. The plant has waves of blooms, gold flowers with red centers.  Today I trimmed back the potted plumbago to allow it to rest.  I need to investigate what kind of fertilizer or other care it may need.  The in-ground plumbago in Oakland is blooming away, and I do not want to prune it back yet.

I continue to supplement the water on the in-ground and potted succulents and ice plant.

I appreciate the flocks of small birds that the garden attracts.  My current mission is to chase the woodpeckers off the house.  They have plenty of trees to drill into, although I suspect the house trim boards may be more supple than any number of valley oaks they could work on.  In any event, I rap on the window and throw open doors so that they do not get overly comfortable under the house eaves.

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