Thursday, March 31, 2011

White Mold!!!!! & Mealybugs!!!!!!!!

I have been too involved with my (balcony) garden lately, in studying them and their behavior towards climatic and positional changes. Two new flowering plants have arrived to the collection.

A weird Moss Rose.

Vinca Rose - Peach

But what worries me actually now, more than anything else, is the fungus, that has been affecting my plants.

They first appeared on the marigold and lasted in them until the plant perished. These are white, insect like creatures that seem to originate from a web at the stem region and then spread in all directions. Some study refers to moist conditions for their origin. Whatever the origin is, it seems impossible to get rid of them and now I have 4 of my plants infected. Medicines have failed me.

“White mold, or sclerotinia, is a plant disease caused by fungal infection. The fungus Sclerotinia sclerotiorum is the most common culprit, but some other Sclerotinia species also infect plants. White mold is also sometimes called stem rot, stalk rot, wilt, or head rot. The fungus is most common in temperate climates, though it can grow in a wide variety of ecological environments. Sclerotinia sclerotiorum is one of the most successful plant pathogens and it affects some of our most important food crops.”

The result is slower growth of plants, no flowers and even if there are any, the flowers are infected and never bare seeds. I even doubt the pigeons that always dirty my balcony; could they have carried the disease? Also some of the plants have this moving creature wom i suspect to be meally bugs....not sure though.

Those White spots....

My uncle told me this first – “Can’t do anything with them, you have to throw the plant.” Even though I did value his advice based on his good gardening background, it bothered me to pluck the plant away without trying some remedies. So may be the hard way but satisfying indeed, I tried the medicine which failed.

Reading through the net now, I find similar recommendations like that of my uncle. It asks for replacement of the affected soil completely and pruning of the infected regions.

So I am doing what seems the best now - Separating of the affected plants, replacing the soil and replanting the pruned plant. I have to experiment them with one to see the result. I really hope it works and my plants survive.

So are there any another emotionally easy way to get rid of this crazy white predator?

Sunday, March 20, 2011


I am beginning to realize that everything we do follows a rhythm, and if we recognize that rhythm then nothing seems to be difficult or stressful or disappointing.

With my ear phones plugged-in one day, I stepped out of my house towards the office cab. As the music played, I observed that everything around me happened so much in sync with the music itself; the moving of the vehicle, people, dancing of trees with the wind and so on. This might have occurred before but it was the first time I realized that.

Since then I have been noticing them in everything I do. When we jog, the body adheres to a rhythm, once you are able to recognize that, the jog becomes tireless; when I cycle, in the movement of the paddle – up and down, as the leg follows it; when reading, in the coordination of eye and mind. While painting, in the flexing of the brush.

Not sure how true this is but, the secret lies within!

Saturday, March 05, 2011

Simple Things!

Sometimes I wonder, what makes few trips interesting, in spite of it not including any great journey; perhaps its the unexpectedness and company of like-minded people. If you may pick certain trips of yours and try to think why they were special, then those events standout that you did not plan and has involved people who did not think about the decisions made, they readily agreed! So was this small adventurous journey to a temple, near Rajarajeshwari nagar, close to NICE road.

The temple is by the NICE road and I had always wanted to go there, a small temple recently built on a small hill, that during the evenings has sunset in its backdrop which enriches its beauty further more. When I expressed my desire to visit the temple, everyone in our office cab readily agreed. So we planned to stop at NICE road one day with the intention to walk up there. But for our surprise we saw that the NICE road is built in such a way that a huge compound wall separates people from trespassing. So we are left with only one option, jump!

After evaluating the best spot for jumping, we began climbing down the slopes. It was great fun to see everyone so eagerly wanting to do this and nobody showed any hesitation. After that great display of enthusiasm, we all jumped past the NICE road compound and walked up the hill to visit the temple.

It is a small Maariamma temple with a very beautiful idol of the goddess, even more gracefully decorated. The temple is built in form of a chariot, made of granite.

After enjoying the view of sunset in the west, full moon in the east and some tasty Puliogre prasada, we walked back to the cab.

The incident left a good impression in our minds and we wanted to do this again. So we stopped yesterday but while crossing over, we got spotted by the NICE road patrol who asked us to clear the premises but however allowed us to pass over the compound. This time we also visited the Subramanya temple close by, that has beautiful sculptures of lord Karthikeya in its Gopura. Even though not the main attraction, I do have to mention the amazingly tasty Sweet and spicy pongal that is served here as Prasad, they were just too brilliant.

Though this was another funny and memorable experience we decided not to violate the rules again though doing so has always been a fun as a teenager and perhaps still does, but as grownup’s we are more “expected” to abide by the law. :-)

But this trip was worth all that adventure. :-)

Thanks To My Friend Shankh for the pictures!