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PostPosted: Tue Mar 24, 2015 1:11 am 
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Location: upstate NY zone 6B Location Details
Luffas are usually started in the first or second week of April from seed, and they are usually big enough to transplant out of their 1 gallon pots in about 1 month from seed when they start trying to vine.

The praxxus method is already similar to what I typically do with tomatoes and peppers. I usually lay them down on their sides, take off some leaves and ensure that there's plenty of stem underground so it can root out and really anchor the soil with roots. I usually take off bottom leaves, lay the plant on its side, then curl up the growing tip, or tips that will grow above ground, and that seems to work pretty well for me.

I'm growing heirloom tomatoes, and bhut jolokia peppers this year.

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PostPosted: Tue Mar 24, 2015 9:47 am 
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Drosera capensis eating aphid :mrgreen:
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 24, 2015 3:44 pm 
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The plants are fighting back!

Steve, what kind of tomatoes? I'm growing 2 common heirlooms, beefsteak and brandywine, but I may try other ones later if i'm successful this year.

Do you actually eat the jolokia peppers? I'm growing scorpion peppers and I have no idea what i'm going to do with them. both of those are too hot for me!


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PostPosted: Fri Mar 27, 2015 1:33 am 
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I'm just growing Rutgers Heirloom, a standard type this year. I actually do use the bhut jolokias, but not a lot of it. One thing good about them is that you can either freeze or dry them, and they last for a very long time. I just don't use that much of it, but I prefer using it when it is fresh.

I'm actually growing some Alocasia Macrorrhiza which is just starting to accelerate its pace so I separated off 2 of the biggest plants. These actually came from salvaged plants that were leafless and dormant which made survival sprouts, but I bet I can get many massive plants off these in a few months.

3 days ago.
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Separated today: There are more little plants on these upright rhizomes that will keep coming until it expends all of its energy.
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The new leaves will be uncurled and well bigger than the previous one in 2-3 days.
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Off a plant trade, I managed to get some plumeria cuttings that I will be trying to root. I expect roots to form in 3-4 weeks. I'm not even using rooting hormone on these because based on what I've seen off the pachira aquatica trees which are very similar, rooting hormone is completely un-necessary.

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PostPosted: Sun Mar 29, 2015 10:22 am 
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Rufledt wrote:

Do you actually eat the jolokia peppers? I'm growing scorpion peppers and I have no idea what i'm going to do with them. both of those are too hot for me!


I generally like hot chilis but made the mistake of eating an entire jolokia once by itself. That was not the most pleasant experience.

With the extremely hot ones you can use them to spice up soups and chili dishes very effectively (like Steve said freeze them in pieces and use when needed). Another alternative is to make hot sauces (with an added fruit component!) or chutneys because you are diluting them with your base ingredients. I find that drying takes out much of the fruity characteristic, especially with the trinidad scorpion/scotch bonnet/habanero type chilis.

My favourite is still the Jalapeño. Lots of substance and does pack quite a bit of heat.
For laughs and giggles 'peter pepper' is also fun and the ones I grew had a nice aroma to them.


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PostPosted: Sun Mar 29, 2015 4:06 pm 
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Location: HALIFAX, NS
Nicholas wrote:
Rufledt wrote:
My favourite is still the Jalapeño. Lots of substance and does pack quite a bit of heat.


Mine is the dried Facing Heaven Chili which you can actually eat after frying lightly, nice citrusy taste but very hard to find true seed. Indispensible for Sichuan cooking.


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PostPosted: Sun Mar 29, 2015 4:52 pm 
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I've grown Trinidad moruga scorpions last year. I was fascinated by it's fabulous fruity flavor. They are hot, but the taste... Very good.

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PostPosted: Tue Apr 07, 2015 5:46 am 
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I rearranged my plants today to get some more light to the new veggies and I took some pics of the titan arums:

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That's the three of them next to each other. They look kind of different, I think because of the soil. You can't see it very well in the pic, but the middle one is the least droopy and is also the darkest green. It's in miracle grow potting soil. The other 2 are in miracle grow with coconut coir added to improve the texture. It definitely does, but it also seems to dilute the nutritional content of the soil significantly. The arums don't look very bad but most of my veggies looked sickly before I upped the fertilizing.

It must not have been too bad for the arums, because one growing in soil/coir is now shooting:

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It's small but it's definitely starting! The spots look significantly different from the straight miracle grow one:

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It might just be because the background color is darker, but it looks like more light spots, too.

Either way they are all 3 growing quite well.

Here's 3 of the tomatoes and a scorpion pepper:

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You can see how nasty the bottom leaves look, they were worse. The top growth looks better (greener) but still a bit wilty. I just up potted them and I heard it helps to let them dry out slightly so the transplanting goes a little better. Don't know if that's true but I doubt they'll die. The pepper looks rather spotty, Mostly dark leaves with lighter green spots. Another one of them is much lighter, and 2 others are smaller (took longer to germinate) but the one in the photo practically exploded when I upped the fertilizer. 3 of the leaves are 5" long, it's crazy. It seems to be growing more in leaf length than in height, and I may have over fertilized it slightly.

I also got a new bulb. The last one was used when I got the light, so I have no idea how hold it was. I picked it up from home depot, it said 39,000 lumens on it, but the spectrum looks like all the extra light is in the green spectrum. It's strange, not blue or red, but almost a bit greenish.


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PostPosted: Tue Apr 07, 2015 7:53 am 
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Rufledt wrote:
I also got a new bulb. The last one was used when I got the light, so I have no idea how hold it was. I picked it up from home depot, it said 39,000 lumens on it, but the spectrum looks like all the extra light is in the green spectrum. It's strange, not blue or red, but almost a bit greenish.


What type of bulb are we talking about here? Make absolutely sure that it is not a fluorescent one that has one of the characteristic peaks (usually 2 or 3) in the green spectrum.
Plants are green because they reflect that spectrum rather than absorb it. You'd be basically wasting energy and have a lot less available light for growth.


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PostPosted: Tue Apr 07, 2015 2:40 pm 
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It's a metal halide, 400 watt. Most of them are rated at 36000 lumens, but they dim and shift red with age. This new one was rated at 39,000, but appears a different color. Im thinking it may also be reflected light from the plants making it appear greener. I moved some big plants out and it doesnt look as green now. They are all growing quite well since i changed the bulb so im not overly concerned.


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PostPosted: Wed Apr 08, 2015 6:07 pm 
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Location: upstate NY zone 6B Location Details
Once the shoots get to 2-3 weeks old, they should be challenging the height of the originals, and clearly bigger in diameter. Their water consumption also appears to have an uptick since the ones shooting appear to be drying out their soil a lot quicker. Here's just an example of how quickly the titanum shoots grow once they get going. This is over a 9 day period.

3/30/2015
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4/5/2015
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4/7/2015
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4/8/2015
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Here's the A konjac in full bloom. This is thanks to a trade from Alan on this forum. It has a pretty strong aroma when you sniff into the bloom.
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I also found out that the alocosia I had happened to be cucculata, not the macrorrhiza "borneo giant" so I went ahead and puchased it off eBay. Here's the comparison.

A Cucculata: This form is more of an ornamental potted plant that grows more like a tree with leaves generally 10 inches or less in length.
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The macrorrhizha is supposed to get up to 4-5 meters high, and have leaves as large as 2 meters in length given the right conditions so it is the biggest form. It is about the same size as my largest cucculata now, but I expect that to change within 1-2 months.
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PostPosted: Fri Apr 10, 2015 12:04 am 
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I'll take pics as they grow, i'm looking forward to it. i saw today another one is starting a second shoot. I stopped by the university greenhouse today again and it looks like their collection of them is shrinking, either from death or hibernation. They're huge one isn't looking so great,either. I don't know if it's going into hibernation of if there is some other problem. The lady there said they have a lot of issues with their water supply :(


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PostPosted: Thu Apr 16, 2015 10:27 pm 
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It looks like the 2nd shoots on the titanums will all be much bigger than the ones they came off. This is the one from the previous series of pictures, and it's gaining height pretty quickly now, already clearly taller, but also much thicker than the original.
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The rules seems to stick that the shoot will always be larger than the original on the other plants as well.
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It looks like they just about double up in diameter on their 2nd shoots.
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 22, 2015 5:32 am 
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One thing I discovered on a titanums when they put up their 2nd petiole is that they are very prone to magnesium deficiency. I have therefore added a tablespoon of magnesium sulfate to each pot. I could tell pretty easily since there were yellow spots appearing on the leaves that turned dark, and the affected plants had stalled growth on the new shoots. Here's a comparison with 2 of them that were relatively close in growth, however the one that doesn't have the deficiency kept growing while the other one is not budging, but that should change in a couple days.

Healthy one
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Affected one: There are yellow spots on the old petiole, and some of the ends of the leaflets on the new petiole appear white with stalled growth.
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Here's the comparison between the alocosia maccrorhizzos, and alocosia cuculata. It looks like they are still approximately the same size however the maccrorhizzos is progressively getting bigger on each leaf by a greater extent than the other species. In another month there should be a huge difference in size.
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 30, 2015 1:05 am 
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Here's just an update on the house plants that have since been outdoors for the past 2 months.

The alocosia maccrorhizzos is going up in size by a huge amount every single leaf and I have had to move it from a 1 gallon pot into a 4 gallon pot since it was getting root bound already. This one clearly has the lead now in size against the smaller species. It produces larger leaves, but fewer ones however the overall increase in biomass is pretty impressive compared to the last pictures taken a couple months ago.
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The alocosia cuculata is looking pretty healthy too and looks like it may be in need of a larger pot pretty soon given that it is super dark green with lots of leaves, and extremely healthy.
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My largest amorphophallus titanum is around 20 inches in height and it should be producing a pretty big corm underneath. I've found that these plants grow at different rates depending on the genetics of the seed, and this one may just have the strongest genetics. I've already sold off many of them on eBay, but won't let this one go.
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Here are some others.
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Some go into dormancy, but I know they don't last in dormancy that long at this size.
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This is actually the amorphophallus konjac which lost a lot of size after flowering, but it has a leaf with tons of leaflets so it should get back in size pretty quickly.
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The dcxl venus fly traps had a time when they were struggling with being in very damp soil, then getting dried out so they were set back, but they appear healthy now, and should get back to last year's size in a couple months, at least with the largest plant.
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