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Lest I mention the "autumn" word...

Posted by bonsaigai NY Zone 6 (My Page) on
Wed, Aug 22, 12 at 14:30

Ok, I did, I mentioned the autumn word. You know, the time we "Northerners" have to move indoors to enjoy our Sansevieria. Since I'm on an information gathering mission, what does everyone do for sun, water, fertilization?

I'm already thinking to end fertilization by September 1. Then comes the drying down. By late September, I generally cease watering. Most of the plants are still outside and may get the occasional rain, but I give no extra water. If it's not already too cold and I've moved them in, by October 1, the Parade of Plants gets moved into the warm room.

There they sit in the Eastern and Southern windows. I've been letting them get completely dry, then watering about once a month over the winter, maybe a little more. Last year, I watered just enough to keep the hallii leaves from "folding" and others from wrinkling.

It really was a turn around this summer. Growth has been dramatic (for Sansevieria, "dramatic" is a relative term.) The increased winter water helped the plants come out of dormancy much faster, giving them more time to grow. The hallii produced two new pups. In the past I was happy for one, every three years. My francisii has produced 3 pups, patens also 2 and the masoniana, 5, - minus one the red squirrel got.... Many others are still pushing, new leaves and pups, but probably will not do anything much until next summer.

So, anyone else for growing suggestions or commentary?

I do envy the longer seasons of the south, but I equally love my cool weather.

Michael
Interlaken, NY Zone 6
Still learning the lay of the land and the swing of the Upstate seasons.


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: Lest I mention the "autumn" word...

Michael-
You did it!! Sigh. Other than the relentless mosquitos the last two years...I, like my Sanseveierias, really like the summer (and Spring and Fall) and dislike the cold and winter. Although I really love my home and neighborhood, it is on the smaller side and I really don't have much space, especially good space, for houseplants inside. That does not stop me from growing more than I should though, LOL! Soon the days will shorten and the nights will chill and I will have to bring them back inside. A couple smaller Sas get the ideal kitchen window, and a few mediums get a spot near a sunny back door. A couple larger pots will be in the dining room but will not get direct sun there. My home is a bit cool even for those in the better spots. Variegates that are kept dark and cool and dry suffer greatly. Several of the Sans will be brought to my office where some of them will be in better spots than others. A few variegates or new aquisition will go under a fluorescent shop light at my work in a small "plant room" where temps stay a bit warmer (knock on wood). The Sans really take off in the summer, and I notice that some will have some "momentum" and pups that initiate now will continue to push up over several weeks/months after being brought inside. If these are in the less ideal spots the pups will look poor compared to those that are still getting good light and warmth. In the "plant room" at work I may have to water smaller pots twice a week. Most of the plants at home will get watered once every week or two (smaller pots) or less often (larger pots). I ALWAYS water in the morning of a sunny day during the winter and try to avoid wetting any of the leaves. I also make sure they dry before the next wwatering. Right now, while it is warm and they are outside, they seem to thrive in moist soil. Still a couple weeks of warmth and light to enjoy.....


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RE: Lest I mention the "autumn" word...

Don't even bring the subject up yet. I don't have a clue where or what to do.


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RE: Lest I mention the "autumn" word...

Oh Stush... LOL! It sounds like you have obtained a 'few" plants this year. Hehehe. I know the feeling. At least I have an idea where things are going. Although, I want to paint and renovate my plant room and I'm a bit concerned WHERE everything is going to go...

Woodnative, I try to get everything into as much light as possible too. How "dark" is your low light situation. I think I have to put my big masoniana into a rather dim situation this year.


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RE: Lest I mention the "autumn" word...

The temperature dropped into the 50's last night here in north Georgia. I went into panic mode and brought all my sans inside today. I was hoping for a few more weeks of growing outside. But, better safe than sorry. It was fun shuffling them around to get the most morning sun.

Barb


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RE: Lest I mention the "autumn" word...

Oh dear, here we go, the weather is really turning... 45 F tonight. In they come, or at least some are coming in. I refuse to risk the rorida... hurt the humiflora... freeze the fischeri... Oh dear, this time of year, it brings the heart to heaviness.


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RE: Lest I mention the "autumn" word...

Ok, total panic mode; Bring in what ever I could, and find dead/dyeing plants tomorrow morning.... Dropping here the same. I got most of the white variegated ones, (they are the most sanative). Next the heavy yellow variegated ones, all the hahnii ones. Oh no, that means all of them. It is way too early this time of year. I need help.


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RE: Lest I mention the "autumn" word...

Ok. Many are in, ugh.

Here's a question. In the past, I've plopped most of the plants in a window here and here. Now there are more. For the growers in temperate climes, which windows do you use? I've used everything but North, but really have kept most of them dry and not even in a window last year. I don't see continuing growth as an option in the winter, so don't usually put them under lights.

Stush? Barb? Karen? Michaela? I know there are more "Northern" growers out there. I believe Michael Phillips has a greenhouse and I know Alan Butler does. I just don't have that option - yet.


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RE: Lest I mention the "autumn" word...

Well, this is going to be the first winter with lots of new sans. So, not the voice of experience. My windows with morning light are facing northeast and east. So they should all get a little sun, until we get into those dark grey days of winter. We keep the temp at 72, so they shouldn't get too cold. When it does get really cold outside, I will pull the little hahnis back away from the window. I don't know about watering, maybe every two or three weeks on a sunny day. What do you think?


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RE: Lest I mention the "autumn" word...

Is it too late to vote that you don't mention it?


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RE: Lest I mention the "autumn" word...

LOL! Autumn... autumn... autumn.

Yes. it's the time for all good tropical plants to get the heck inside. Now it will be 80 tomorrow and in the mid-50's at night, but I'd better get my self moving. Tables need sorting, lights checked, and carriers arranged. You wouldn't believe it if you saw what has to come in... besides the Sansevieria.


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RE: Lest I mention the "autumn" word...

Watering is very subjective........ Clay pot vs. plastic.....sun vs. no sun, forced air vs. electric heat etc. etc. I do need to water my plants, it seems, every week or two through winter. I try to water on the morning of a sunny day.
Bonsaigai Michael I am in temperate NJ. The lucky ones get good windows or under lights and these do the best. Those in dark corners survive.....but it really seems to hurt some of them by Spring, especailly variegates.
BTW it should warm up by the end of the week. I brought in some of my variegates, and others went close to the house where the microclimate is a bit warmer than further out in the yard. Some plants including hahnis are still in the yard. Where do I put them all?....


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RE: Lest I mention the "autumn" word...

Well this year I am starting to put some up in a used 55 gallon fish tank. I need light in my living room anyway so why not put some here. A 55 gallon will hold a lot of sans and cactus stuff. 4 feet long and 1 foot wide and 2 feet high. Only my tall sans can't fit. The tank will keep them warmer than on a window seal. Also kept dryer and darker will let them sleep for the winter. We all need a resting period. It's what makes spring so beautiful. My wife wants it in the cellar and I want it up stares. I think she will win this one again.


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RE: Lest I mention the "autumn" word...

Woodnative, very good to bring up the pot materials, it makes a difference. Soil medium also would be something to consider. I've finally gotten a mixture I am comfortable with, 80% draining inorganic: 20% moisture retentive organic. For the real dry, desert species 90:10, I suppose. I'm transferring everything to plastic or glazed stoneware (most are already) next spring. Heat is a challenge. I'm getting a woodstove hooked in but have forced air backup.

Stush, beg her to keep it upstairs. For years, I used a 55 gal. with a 4' shop light for my ferns. It was beautiful. It's very attractive and offers much needed light. I'm actually getting it together this year again, I liked it so much.

I ended up covering plants these past few days. A big heavy blanket goes a long way to keeping things reasonably situated. This weekend is to be warm without rain. I hope the pots dry reasonably. After that, the big parade indoors begins!


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