I’ll Be Back

July 3, 2008 | By | Comments (4)

Faithful Grumpians, it is with great sadness that must leave you temporarily.

For offenses most heinous and reprehensible, I have been sentenced to a rafting trip down the Grand Canyon with my family. My sister-in-law who loves to talk is coming with us. I figure by about the fourth day on the river with her, I will be guilty of another heinous crime.

Even though I’ll be incommunicado until July 14, don’t let that stop you from emailing the Grump your questions. As our raft pounds over the final Class VI rapid with certain death waiting at any moment, I’ll be wracking my brain for answers as to why your hydrangeas won’t bloom. I’ll respond to all of your questions just as soon as they release me from the ICU.

Semper fi,


  1. Grumpy

    The Grump has safely returned from his exciting, thrill-packed, ground-breaking, and totally manly rafting trip down the Grand Canyon. Temperatures during the day soared to well over 100 degrees on several occasions with relative humidity extremely low. I would undoubtedly have perished from thirst, if not for the discovery of a delicious beverage favored by the indigenous people. It’s called “beer.”
    Apparently, they make this “beer” by fermenting malted grain and adding the flowers of a strange vine called “hops.” Sounds awful, I know, but it tastes delicious and is surprisingly refreshing. After the first “beer,” you feel invigorated. After the second “beer,” you feel inspired. After a third “beer”, you find the good in all people. I found myself enjoying this “beer” every day of our trip. If you can find it where you live, I highly recommend that you give it a try.
    Now I’ll answer some questions.
    1. White flies — These rank high among the garden’s worst and most intractable pests. You have to control them early on. If it gets to the point where all of your plants are infested and dying, you’ve lost the battle. The only thing you can do is pull up your plants and start over, making sure the new plants you bring home from the garden center aren’t already infested. FYI,the sticky stuff is honeydew secreted by the insects and black mold grows on the honeydew.
    2. Daylilies — These plants like lots of sun. The more sun they get, the more flowers you get, and vice-versa. If I were you, I’d transplant them to a sunny spot this fall.
    3. Hibiscus — There are lots of types of hibiscus. It sounds like you have two different types. Some bloom all summer. Others don’t like hot weather and tend to bloom mostly in spring and fall. From your description, it sounds like the plants are healthy. Maybe you should return the two that don’t flower to containers and see what happens.
    What about it, Grumpians? Any other ideas about how Pam can get her hibiscus to bloom?

    July 15, 2008 at 7:10 pm
  2. Pam Langley

    Dear Grumpy,
    Hope the rafting trip is Grand!
    I have four hybiscus that I bought about 5 years ago. I kept them in pots for the first 2 yrs and they bloomed fine. Three years ago I planted them in the yard. Since then 2 are blooming profusely, but the other 2 refuse to flower. They all have similar sun exposure. I’ve noticed that the two blooming ones have brownish stems and the other two have green stems. They all had single red blooms before. Could it be a difference in species?
    Pam from Lake Charles, Louisiana

    July 6, 2008 at 9:22 pm
  3. Beth

    My daylilly bulbs have not bloomed in 4 years. What can I do to make them bloom. They are in the shade. Do they need sun or some food?
    Please respond if you make it back from your rafting trip.
    Beth in Tennessee

    July 5, 2008 at 8:37 pm
  4. Lauren P.

    Dear Grumpy,
    I created a beautiful vegetable garden in my backyard this spring. My plants were growing beautifully until they were infested with small white flys. I spray Ortho and Bayer vegetable spray weekly – but to no avail, they have persistently grown in mass, and now infiltrated all other plants that I have in my back yard. Additionally, I seem to black mold and a sticky smear on my many of my plants – which may have resulted from the flys as well.
    I live in Central Florida, with heat, rain, and humidity. How do I begin to eliminate the white flys?

    July 5, 2008 at 9:37 am

Leave a Comment

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s