Thursday, November 17, 2011

BE CAREFUL WHO YOU BRING INSIDE FOR THE WINTER

There are always a few lucky plants who get to spend the winter inside the house. Partly because the extra greenery is nice to have inside and partly because both potting shed and greenhouse will be full up again this year. Most of the ones which come inside will not require any water over the winter. If we are away for a period of time then plants which require more water will go in the potting shed where the humidity levels are higher.


Close inspection of plants is a necessity. After all, there are probably hitch hikers down there among the leaves. It's not unusual for me to bring lizards into the house. I was carrying in a sanseverai last year and as I walked down the hallway to the place where it was going to spend the winter I discovered an anole pressed up against the long leaves. I did a quick turnaround. Yesterday while moving this aloe plant a few feet out popped another anole. Such darling little critters. He must have just molted becasue you can see the old skin on his tail.


I brought some cactus inside but had to find new trays for them because on two of them the preying mantis had laid its egg case. I don't want a repeat of trying to catch all the little mantids as happened one year when the mantis laid its eggs on one of the branches on the lemon tree.
Make sure you check out your plants for hitch hikers.

11 comments:

  1. You can usually pop the mantis egg case off the pot without damaging it, then move it somewhere protected outside -- preferably where birds won't find it.

    Or better yet, put it in a jar in your refrigerator for the winter, and take it out in the spring. That's what I would do -- I've been looking for a mantis all fall, and will be on the lookout for cases while I clean up this fall. Last spring was the first in a while that I didn't have an egg case in a jar and therefore dozens of young to spread around the garden, and mantises were hard to find this summer.

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  2. Good to know- did not know what the egg case of the preying mantis looked like. I have seen that. Little hitch hikers. haha cute.

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  3. Alan- I really like that idea of the jam jar. Maybe I'll try that. One year I had babies running all over the place and I was trying to get them on a sheet of paper to take them outside. Some got caught in spider webs in the corner!

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  4. During a hard freeze, I will bring my potted plants into the house...Along with TONS of mosquitoes - YUCK!! Thank goodness we now have space in our garage for our potted plants.

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  5. Very good point to be careful bringing plants indoors!

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  6. Your hitch-hikers are much cuter than mine. All I found were slugs and spiders.

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  7. What a cute little stowaway! I love the little anoles! I've never seen one molting, though, very interesting!

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  8. Anoles, soppy little peeper frogs, fence lizards -- they all come in with plants. Fun. My pest control crew in the greenhouse.

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  9. I expected a snake! Good to know about the praying mantis egg case. I've seen those before and didn't know what they were.

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  10. Hahahaha...so cute! I can only imagine the sheer joy/terror of my cat were that to happen in my house!

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  11. I agree, anoles are darling. We have lots on our front porch and they often use the railing for their displays.

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