Re: [IGS] Letter from OZ

-- [ From: Dale Neil * EMC.Ver #2.5.3 ] --

Hi Joan,

> It was good to learn about the different climate zones.  You really do
> a hard time of it (at least your geraniums do) with all that cold.
I'm finding that coping with cold can be helped with the correct frame
of mind (esp this year). What we are going through  this year is down
right balmy compared to past winters. For instance, today it got up to
40 and the weather people are reminding us that 2 years ago on this date
it was -28 F. It really doesn't feel bad at all in that respect. Of
course, there are special geranium needs to consider. One really has to
be hardy to make it through our normal winters. I do have many micro
climates on my property that produce surprising results but still not
good enough for Pelargoniums. Sooo I have most of the window sills
occupied and my finished unheated attic has a number of florescent
fixtures in use.
I have more trouble with the hot humid summers that we have (although
last summer that was milder than most also so I don't know if we are
going through changes in general) . I know what you mean with the heat
and geraniums even though we don't have temps quite as high as you do.
I've read that Pelargoniums actually shut down in temps higher than 90 -
95  F(sorry I have trouble translating to Celsius. I know general ranges
but few specifics without getting out my calculator). They don't seem to
take up quite as much water in the excess heat as they do at moderate

> Haven't had time to try the garlic yet.   Compost tea spray?? what do
> mean?
If you have mature compost nearby, you can put a shovelful in a piece of
burlap or any cloth that would allow flow thru and tie it to form sort
of a large tea bag. Soak this in a bucket of water for a day or 2
stirring occassionally. The resulting fluid should then be watered down
until the color resembles a weak tea. This can then be used in a sprayer
of your choice to spray the leaves of a plant for either foliar feeding
or treatment of fungal infections. I will see if I can find out how
often this is to be done to help control fungus. The key is in the
organism that help compost mature are antibiotic/antifungal beneficial
organism. Some nursery supply houses are now making available a cultured
version of the same types of organism and saying that it should be
sprayed on  plants while they are healthy to keep them from coming down
with infections. If you have some extra plants, you might try this
compost tea on them. I have no first hand experence with spraying the
solution on plants; however, I have watered plants with it occassionally
and found it beneficial.

> would be great to be able to send some pictures over the Robin.  Is
> possible?    I am told it would have to be sent as an attachment.
> I have a scanner by the way, but I guess people would have to have the
> right gear to receive it.   Any advice?
Gisela seems to have some good basic experience that she has past on.
Most Internet service providers encode and unencode files as they come
and go from them. If a person doesn't have a provider that does this
then they will need a program that will do it. There are many shareware
programs that do that such as wincode and winzip. they can usually be
found around the WWW  There is the problem that Gisela mentions which is
people who don't really want to take the time to download
unknown/unsolicited files from their mailbox because of toll rates.
There could be a few solutions this if there  was enough interest. One
would be like Gisela did; ask and send only to those who requested you
send them. (I suppose a list of interested people could be made them
whenever you had a photo to send, make out one message with a file
attachment... message would only need a subject and no internal text for
this.... and send it by way of carbon copies to the list of people you
know are interested.
(let me say here that I for one would be glad to see any and all
pictures of geraniums that anyone would want to send me <G>.)
Another thing we could consider (and I don't know who would be in charge
of this) but somehow incorporate a library FTP site in conjuction with
the IGS Web site where any photo files could be posted for anyone to
download. I know they already have that photo gallery there so maybe would provide IGS with an FTP site for that purpose.
Couple more ideas: If the photo had a clear subject title on it and
submitted to the Robin for distribution. Than a person getting it in
their mailbox could decide if they wanted to download it, knowing that
it was a photo from the subject title.
Next: send them all to me.  I will make a list to post every once in
awhile for anyone interested to ask me to send them a copy.
What does anyone else think of these ideas for photo file distribution?

Well I have carried on long enough here for now. :-)

Hope all is well with you and your plants. ("gyro-coptering" ???? sounds


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