Saturday, November 9, 2013

Come in From The Cold

 Not long after moving to North Carolina, I learned (through an article in Southern Living) the secret to getting your holiday cactus to re-bloom every year.  They recommended moving it outside for the summer into a mostly shaded spot.  It should stay there until just before the first frost when it will then be brought into the house and given a home in a cooler room out of direct sunlight.
I brought mine into the garage for a few days to acclimate to the slightly warmer temperature before bringing it into the warm house.  I also sprayed it good with an insecticidal soap.
When I brought it in it was covered with tiny buds.
The above photo was after it had been in the house for a week or so.  You can see the blooms are about ready to open.

 I placed it in my living room which is always on the cool side and gets very little sunlight.
It's been a busy week and I haven't been in the living room much.
Until last night that is.
I sat down to read and looked across the room to see this:

As you can see it doesn't take long for the buds to turn into blossoms once it is in the house.
So pretty and I like the way it is brightening up the corner in this dark room.
Speaking of dark rooms, I broke the cardinal rule of blogging and used the flash in this photo.  It was that or a very dull and drab photo.  Sometimes ya gotta do what ya gotta do :-).

While I was taking photos I couldn't help but notice how pretty the inside of this tea cup is and it coordinates well with the cactus.

I brought one more plant into the house for the winter.
It's a Meyer Lemon Tree.
I bought this one from QVC last spring.  I had been wanting one and happened to be watching one of their gardening shows when they explained everything I needed to know about growing it.
It spent the spring and summer on the patio and doubled in size.
It came with a nice booklet of growing instructions which I am keeping in a handy spot.
It will now spend the winter in the sunniest window in the house.
It is normal for it to shed many of it's leaves, which it has just started to do.  Once it goes back outside next spring the new leaves are supposed to pop out quickly.  I'll let you know how it goes.
Have you grown a Meyer Lemon Tree before?  Any words of advice?  I hear the flowers are supposed to smell wonderful.  I'm looking forward to that.

 Now that it is the time of year to spend more time indoors, I am planning to renew my efforts to work on a long neglected project.
We won't even discuss when this Christmas cross stitch project was started.  I can't really figure out why I don't just stick with it until it's done.  I think I'll just blame it on my eyesight.  It's a lot harder to see those tiny holes than it was when I used to love to cross stitch.
Anyhoo, I saw something on HappyOne's blog that has inspired me to get to it.  She will be posting a picture of her weekly progress on one of her cross stitch projects every Saturday.  You can read about it here .
If you read her blog you already know that she whips out afghans and dishcloths and all sorts of beautiful things at record speed.  She will no doubt have her large cross stitch piece done long before mine.  However, I think doing a weekly update on progress could be just the thing to hold me more accountable to finishing this project in time for Christmas.  It might not be til Christmas of 2014 or even 2015, but sooner or later it shall get done.  
Once completed it should look something like this:

Kind of hard to see, but the angel's skirt is a Christmas tree.
The sentiment is  Enter Friend and Welcome Be Share Warmth and Joy Beneath our Tree.

 Wish me luck (I have a feeling I'm going to need it ;-).


  1. Beautiful...your cactus in bloom. I have only had a Christmas Cactus once and it never survived until the next Christmas!

    Good luck with your project....a beautiful piece of Christmas art!

  2. That cactus looks wonderful. Are you fertilizing it while it blooms? That way, you may have blossoms right through Christmas!

    Neither John nor I had the strength to haul the cactus to the basement this year where it is cooler and darker so it is not blooming and may never bloom again. Sigh.

    Nope, have never had a lemon tree Meyer or otherwise.

    All the best with your cross-stitch project. It's lovely. I noticed the same thing...when the eyes went, the fussy work ended. No joy in such projects anymore.

    1. Vee,
      Nope, I am not fertilizing. I will do so now. How fun it would be to extend the bloom time. Thanks for the tip.

    2. Hi Kim, I think you will finish it sooner than you think. Your Christmas cactus is so beautiful. I love Meyer lemons, hope you get some on your tree. xo

  3. Your Christmas cactus is so pretty and so many blooms. I have a small one that I got last Christmas and it is growing, but I have kept it in the kitchen - north window. Looks like it might bloom around Christmas. I have a Meyers Lemon tree in the back yard, in a pot as I don't want it to get so big that I can't take care of it. I have 4 lemons almost ripe. Yes, they smell wonderful. I can remember when we moved to Orange County 50 years ago - there were so many lemon and orange trees and they smell heavenly.
    I have a couple of projects to finish also - one is a beautiful quilt and each square has a different picture and a table cloth with napkins to match. They are probably going to rot before I get them finished.LOL Your Christmas Tree is very pretty and hopefully you will get it finished so you can enjoy it.
    Have a great rest of the weekend.

  4. Ways to treat a Christmas Cactus, what to do with a Meyer's Lemon Tree, and how to complete projects waiting in the shadows. You teach me so many things here. Thank you! I would be most excited to have a flowering plant like yours to brighten up one of my corners, not to mention the huge boost it would give to my "green thumb longings":) So pretty!

  5. Beautiful cactus. Mine is just beginning to bloom and I'm going to follow Vee's advice to fertilize it to extend the bloom time.
    We have a Meyer lemon tree outside (in Canada!) under a shelter. We wrap it for the winter and our tree expert told us that the lemons should continue to ripen. We'll see. It doesn't get below freezing very often where we are.
    I did a few cross stitch projects back a few decades, but was never in love with the process. Your project will be lovely when finished. Doesn't really matter how long it takes if you enjoy it.

  6. Hi Kim! Your cactus is so pretty! Wow! I'm glad you are feeling Christmasy. That's good! I have been thinking about cross stitch. I do like the way it looks and the neat and tidy work involved.

  7. Kim your cactus is really gorgeous! What a bright and delightful colour to enjoy indoors for a while. Mine has started to bloom too. It's white with a touch of soft pink. Half of it died so hopefully the blooming part will survive. Growing a lemon tree sounds interesting. Your cross stitch is sweet and I just know you'll get it completed in time to hang for Christmas. I used to do cross sticheries too, many years ago. I can't see the holes now either. LOL Blessings, Pamela

  8. Your cactus looks beautiful. I had two of them but they didn't make it with the move. I don't even remember what happened to them but they aren't around anymore!!

    Love all your tea cups. They look so pretty sitting there.

    Good job on the cross stitch. Looks like you don't have too much more to do. You should finished soon. I've posted my progress too for this week. Thanks for the blog mention.
    My eyes are not as good as they once were either. I work under an ott light and wear strong magnifying glasses. That does the trick for me and I don't have any problem seeing.

  9. Your Christmas cactus is gorgeous! Have you counted how many blooms it has? My mother in law has such good luck with these (she lives in Asheville, too). She had them in front of windows in different rooms and even a huge one in the basement in front of a window. They bloom like crazy and she always counts them! heehee I love this cross stitch. I hope I can crochet more this winter! Sweet hugs!

  10. Your cactus is absolutely beautiful!! How wonderful that you are growing a lemon tree, too! I wish I could grow one here, but have no place to move it inside for the winter months. I'm glad you're going back to work on your Christmas cross stitch. Sometimes it takes me forever to complete things, too.

  11. The Christmas cactus is so pretty, Kim! I love plants but never had one of these that lived long. Seeing yours makes me want to try again. I hope your lemon tree does well and rewards you with many fragrant flowers. And the cross-stitch will be lovely when it's completed. Enjoy your Sunday!

  12. Kim, your Christmas cactus is one of the lovelies I've seen. You really have a green thumb. I don't know anyone who is raising a lemon tree here in the Midwest, but have seen many of the cactuses. Or is it 'cacti'? Way different climate from what I was used to in Texas. As for cross-stitching, I gave that up 2 pairs of glasses ago. Good luck with that. It will be pretty when you finish it.

  13. Your Christmas cactus is so pretty, Kim, I have two that are now blooming, I would love to grow a Meyers lemon tree! Good luck with the cross stitch project, I too have some unfinished needlework that have been packed away for a few years. ~smile~ I enjoy visiting Happy One, she is such a great photographer. Thanks for sharing.
    Enjoy your day.

  14. I do love Christmas cactus. Mine is also in full bloom. I love your pretty cross stitch.
    Have a nice week



Your comments are welcome and appreciated.
I will do my best to answer any questions here in the comments section.