Sunday, October 19, 2008

Fall Cleaning

Is there such a thing called "Fall Cleaning"? I guess if you are a gardener, this is one of the most important thing to do. I didn't have time or the energy to do the entire fall cleaning this weekend, but I did managed to dug out the plants I wanted to save before this year's first frost, which will be tonight. Way too early! :( So, all of a sudden, my indoor plant collection got much bigger! I cleaned my Cymbidium, Elephant Ear, and our favorite Norfolk Pine. It was lots of work, especially with the Norfolk Pine. I put it out in the front yard every summer, right underneath the oak tree. I know it suppose to get full sun, but since it spends 6 months winter time indoor, with partial sunlight, it gets burnt easily outside, even after the hardening off period. I actually burnt it earlier this year. So, it stayed under the tree for the whole summer. Anyway, it loves to be outside. It grew pretty fast, now it's almost 6-ft tall, and more than 4-ft in diameter! If it keeps growing like this, I am afraid we have to give it away. And as you can imagine, it's quite heavy with that big pot. I tried to keep the pot dry while washing the tree, otherwise it would be impossible for me to move it. So now, my dining room is a jungle again. And the shelf in the small bedroom upstairs is 2/3 full. It was almost empty last year! I have to give some duplicates away, otherwise, I will be running out of space in no time. I have a problem with killing a plant, or throwing away a cutting after pruning. And I tend to keep some of my favorite annual indoor for winter as well. I know, not very smart, but I just don't have to heart to let the winter kill them. Ok, back to 'fall cleaning'. It was too cold to wash the pots outside, so I put most of them in the utility sink in the basement, soaking in bleach water. I love that sink, I am so glad Richard and "Ask This Old House" show installed it for me. I cannot imagine what I am supposed to do without it. That's the end of my 'cleaning' outside. As I was washing dishes, I caught this little guy dining on the last of my cherry tomatoes. He/she was so cute, even posed for me and waited several minutes for me to grab my camera.
And does anyone know whether the root of the sweet potato vine is edible? I was throwing away the green and purple sweet potato vine I had in the hanging baskets and window boxes, and found all the big roots. They look like those sweet potato you see in the grocery store, just different colors. The root of the green sweet potato vine has dark pink skin with white inside, while the purple one has white root inside and out. I left them outside for the little above, but just a little bit curious about them. Have to remember to take some pictures of them tomorrow.

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