Friday, March 26, 2010

A Very Happy Cactus

Hi All. Here is some news from Don Campbell from the Chinle Cactus Club.

The abnormally harsh winter of 2009-10 was not kind to many cacti in the two Chinle Club sponsored gardens. However, on Wednesday, March 24 immediately following the regular 'Garden Party' at WCBG it was especially pleasant to find a few very happy cacti. Ernie's Cactus Corner at the Western Colorado Botanical Gardens has some of the biggest, happiest, healthiest 'Mountain Ball Cacti' one is likely to find anywhere on the Western Slope. In fact these Pediocacti are so happy they're getting ready to celebrate spring with a profusion of flowers. The plant shown below is slightly over 6 inches in diameter and loaded with flower buds. Count 'em, there are over 20 with the possibility of still more to emerge. Depending on the upcoming weather, one could expect to see flowers in about 10 to 14 days, If you go looking for flowers, be sure to give old Sol enough morning time to work a bit of magic and coax the flowers into opening.

(With the vandalism we had last year at the Gardens it looks like the cactus are arming themselves.-Elizabeth)

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Bloom Day

Ok, so I actually took these photos on Bloom Day. From the blogs I read I think that Bloom Day is every 15th of the month. Garden bloggers are supposed to venture out and take some photos of what is blooming in their gardens. I just happened to be inspired by our plants on March 15th. It wasn't until the 16th that I figured out about Bloom Day and, of course, it isn't until today that I actually posted them. They are lovely photos anyway.

1. Lobster claw in the butterfly house. No, I did not enhance the colors.

2. Variegated ginger in the butterfly house. This is an extremely happy plant.

3. The same ginger, but the whole shebang. I told you it was happy.

4. This isn't a bloom, but dig those crazy Shirley Temple curls on the philodendrom!

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Ghost Orchid

Plants do the most amazing things. They grow in the wrong soil. They grow when you prune them wrong. They grow in the wrong zone. All kinds of crazy things. The one phrase that comes up again and again in discussions trying to figure out why the plants are doing what they do is "Plants don't read books." They don't read newspapers either. Thank goodness.

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Something Fishy

Something fishy is going on here. See?

This is our brand new koi. It's name is Sushi. (giggle) What you can't see is the plecostimus. It's name is Arley, because you can 'arley see 'em. No, they aren't swimming around in radiator fluid. They are in their transfer tank which is an acidic shade of green.

There is Sushi in the Rainforest Greenhouse pond. He (she?) looks right at home. Arley is living up to her (his?) name.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010


Hey! I just got hit on the head with a hibiscus leaf.

Friday, March 5, 2010

Hooray for Grey!

Hi all. Usually you are hearing me kvetch and moan about the grey weather outside. It is true yesterday was truly a superb day and I'm pretty sure I heard seratonin levels exploding all over the Grand Valley. However, today we are back to grey and gloom. So what should you do on a grey and gloomy day? Visit the butterfly house, of course.

We have nearly 100 pupa in the puparium and they are starting to emerge. We let loose a couple of monarchs and a queen this morning. Yes, that is the royal we (forgive me, I couldn't help the pun). The weather is a plus for releasing butterflies because our little darlings are a little sluggish on grey days. That means we'll be putting them out to roost on low branches and you'll be able to see them up close and personal.

You know what else will be in our butterfly house that you can see up close and personal? Renowned artist Sara Oakley. That's right. It is the First Friday of the month and that means we've got that rare plant artistus spendens  down here at the Gardens. Sara will be painting in the butterfly house from 5 to7pm tonight. Come on down and check it out. There will be cookies....