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Winter watering is more complex because the plants needs vary more widely. As it gets colder I water less often going for 2-3 weeks in the winter without misting or watering at all. Some of the Prostheceas really need to stay drier to stay healthy. It is technically too cold for them. But they flower well. Interesting things happen because of the temperatures. Dend. magnum and Dend. wenzelii grow fine but refuse to flower while other Dendrochilums love it and flower like crazy. Cattleya intermedia sat for 3 years before bursting forth with better flowers than I have ever gotten in the greenhousePleione formosana took to the log immediately and never looked back. I have a Restripia that flowers best after a cold snap (34°F or so).

As for critters, in the beginning we had some really nice garden snakes napping amongst the pseudobulbs but haven't seen much of them lately. Too bad since slugs and snails are the only really difficult pest there is so far. I bait for them as little as possible and as I write this am wondering why I never tried beerI will now. Otherwise there are remarkably few problemsaphids on the Onc. flexuosum spikes that are easily dealt with using the ultra fine oil sprays a few times as the spikes are emerging and I have never seen a mealy bug or scale even though we fight both regularly on nearby ferns. Anytime we find a frog or lizard in the other greenhouses we carry it out to the log restaurant. I do live in fear of a rat, raccoon, and deer invasions but so far so good.

This has been a most satisfying venture. The logs are ever changing and there is still much work to do, A remarkable number of plants are growing beautifully and I am getting more realistic about taking off plants that are clearly miserable. When we have our spring and fall sales we can point to the logs and say look, this is how they grow, look at the amazing leaf, root and pseudobulb variations, look how they go where they want. Look how cool they are! Friends have donated wonderful plants and there is a local drawing class that comes by periodically, sets up easels and draws happily for hours. People come to the sales to check up on the progress of the logs. I have heard wonderful stories of people becoming inspired to make a life with plants at an early age so I am thinking of inviting the local 3rd graders to give me their opinions. That should be fun...

just planted
1 1/2 years later

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