Thursday, October 12, 2006

Moving Indoors

With the arrival of the last night’s cold front, the fall has deepened and turned even further away from summer, though I don’t yet feel a pull towards winter. I was forced to bring the last of the houseplants inside the cabin, and now I feel a bit cramped. This is partly because the plants have all grown during their time outside and so are larger than when I put them outside. But mostly it is because the cabin is small and adding three large plants and a half dozen more smaller ones takes up a fair amount of my already small space.

The largest of the plants is the ficus tree I’ve had for 10-12 years. The photo on the left is how it looked out on the front deck a week or so ago. The tree is now so large that moving it anywhere is very difficult, though a plant caddy on wheels helps. The tree is much taller than a single story, reaching almost up to the stovepipe cap on the 2-story high ceiling. At the moment, while the tree made it inside safely, it is not yet in its final winter location, simply because I don’t know where that will be. Where I had it last year is no longer suitable. For now it stands in front of the TV and the fireplace while I try to decide where it will end up.

Several of the smallest plants are almost as difficult to find winter homes for as the tree. I have three pretty nice ferns that I have to keep away from the cats, as they will eat them right down to the ground. The problem is when I put them someplace where the cats can’t get them, they end up so out of the way that I forget they’re there too, and then they rarely get watered. I need to find homes for them that are away from the cats but in my face so I don’t forget them.

That's Ben, the cat who should be named Total Destruction, just to the left of the tree's pot. He's a Maine Coon cat and is eyeing that pot with a look that scares me a little.

4 comments:

pablo said...

I brought in our last two plants after their summer vacation outside. They are bushy and robust, but they face five or six months of limited light and will diminish in vigor and looks. Then spring will come and they will go back out on the deck and thrive once again.

Carolyn H said...

Pablo,

The health decline is what happens with the ficus tree as well. It will shed a lot of leaves, and I will be holding my breath that I can keep it alive indoors until it's time for it to go outside again.

Carolyn H.

LauraHinNJ said...

I have the same problem with no room for the plants that have finished their summer vacation outside.

Peggy said...

Hi, again,

I spent most of this week bringing in plants for the winter. I thought I was doing better at only bringing in plants that I know can survive the winter, but my small area for plants, an entryway supplied with plant stands and lights, is totally crammed full, and I still have more I'd like to bring in. None of mine are as large as your ficus, but a couple are lantanas the size of a small shrub. I know they will shed a lot of leaves, and I will prune them back; I just hate to leave them outside to die. I sympathize with your space problem.