Thursday, July 8, 2010

Summer Moving and Your Moment of Zen

Hi Everyone,

Before showing you images of some of this week's seedlings.....Lee Pickles emailed me asking how I was able to line out plants in the Florida summer heat without them rotting.  While I do think that chemicals have no place in normal daylily gardens, in a hybridizing garden plants have to be lined out in mid-summer.  Not using fungicides on an open wound in 95 degree weather and 100% humidity is like trying to perform major surgery and expecting your patient to recover on their own without antibiotics.  So, here is what we do.  While it works for us, I can not guarantee it will work for you.

First of all, we prepare two "cement mixing" trays (available at Home Depot or Lowes) with water.  To one of them we add Aliette, Banrot and Subdue according to the directions on the containers.  Here is a picture of the chemicals, and Reyna ready to go.
We then dig, cut and divide the plants.  We first put them into the basin of clean water to rinse off the dirt..... if you do not, you will wind up with too much dirt in your fungicide basin.  Here is Reyna cutting and cleaning the plants, along with the two chemical dips.
  Then, we transfer the plants to the basin with the fungicides, and leave them to soak for 10 -20 minutes while we clean the next batch of plants. 

We then plant them as usual, under 60% shade cloth.  We use retractable shade cloth, connected with islets on clothes-line wire (you may be too young to remember what that is).  This allows us to use the shade cloth to reduce heat in the summer, and pull it back for full sun exposure during the rest of the year. 

After the plants are lined out, we soak them with a mixture of Banrot and Subdue, along with dilute soluble fertilizer, using a siphon hose.  We do not use Aliette at this time since the particles are too large to fit through the fine mesh of the siphon hose.  We soak the plants after planting, and then once or twice more, every few days. 

That's it!  With this, we rarely lose plants, and they are ready to go for Fall delivery.

Now, for your moment of Zen........ Some seedlings that bloomed over the last couple of days....  The first one is from my blue eye breeding crossed with Jamie Gossard's Tet. In The Navy x Crystal Blue Persuasion kid (Blue Dragon?).  The second is an eyed/edged double, while the third is a monster sized (8 inches, plus) red.