Each Winter I put a lot of my more delicate plants in the unheated conservatory to try to keep them going. It normally maintains at least 4 to 5 degrees C above the lowest outside temperature. This last winter was harsher than the previous few and I lost more than usual. Not least were three of my small orchid plants which I will replace once we get through the Easter silly season for prices at the garden centres. My three Cymbidium plants did survive and are producing a reasonable number of flower spikes.
Many people assume all orchids are hot house plants but many need cooler conditions. Ideally these should have a minimum of about 10C but so far they have survived short periods well below that. They will spend the Summer outdoors. I do not know the varieties as they all came unnamed. Here is the first variety to open this year. These blooms will last for many weeks.
Among the plants being overwintered were two identical hanging baskets which I had planted last Spring each with two varieties of Fuchsia. One was a disaster and most of the plants died. The other only lost one plant. The trailing plants, Fuchsia Trudi Davro, are just beginning to flower again.
The plants in the top of the baskets are red with very dark, almost black, centres and the two varieties make a lovely contrast. Before too long I should be able to take cuttings and start a new batch so I can replant the other basket.
I don't know when Bobby's birthday is but today it is three years since he came to join me from The Ark Animal Rescue and Retirement Home. He is at least 11yrs old now. Tonight we will have his favourite dinner - roast chicken with all the trimmings.