Mushroom Update & Window Garden

For the first few weeks I wasn't seeing any activity in my mushroom kit, aside from some nice blue-green mold. I think the air in my kitchen is dryer than I estimated, so I made the cut in the plastic bigger and soaked the block in water for a few hours. I also added a humidity tent made from a big clear plastic bag. Now I've got some baby mushrooms growing!

sorry about the dirty fingernails in the pic, but I'd already planted a bunch of seeds this morning

The window garden is keeping me entertained. I got a big shop light for supplemental lighting since the sun is still setting around 4:30.

I started this impatient from a cutting I got from my friend Kathy. I am impressed with how long the bloom is hanging on.

Dylan and I took a little trip to the Lyman Estate Greenhouses in Waltham to pick out some mini tropicals for our terrarium projects. The historic greenhouses are a really nice spot to get out of the snow and smell some greenery, and the plant shop selection is good too.

below: we filled some spice jars with little vines. I put horticultural charcoal in the bottom to keep the soil fresh, since there is no drainage.

I made a closed terrarium for the maidenhair fern with a cracked drinking glass. I still have to add water every week or two, but our house is pretty dry these days from the radiators.

I've got a few herbs inside as backups, in case the parent plant doesn't make it through the winter inside. Some times zone 7 plants make it through our 6b winters, but it depends on the drainage.

Dittany of Crete, Origanum dictamnus - in the margoram family, has pretty purple flowers and neat fuzzy silver leaves. It was very popular in love potions.

Lavender Cotton Santolina chamaecyparissus - another mediterranean silver-leafed herb, this has little yellow flowers and a strong scent that can deter pests. I think it smells like rosemary + gasoline, but not in an unpleasant way.