Here in Ohio, we have had a wet & rainy spring and early summer.
Is it possible? With all the rain we’ve had, it could have happened I guess. But are my hypertufa pots too moist? It seems to me that they could be, or maybe it is just natural die off? I am not sure which, but I am trying all that I can think of doing to remedy the situation. I really don’t want to move them all under shelter because they are too heavy, not to mention some are too large and awkward.
I want my hypertufa garden to be in a permanent arrangement. ( At least as much as I can, since I like to move things so much.) I like to make new hypertufa pots a lot, so I always need to find room for another.
But I like to basically keep the same set-up so I don’t feel that I want to be carrying pots under cover when it gets too rainy. Since I am making larger and larger hypertufa pots, I can’t move them easily or sometimes not at all. Somehow, I have to let them learn to live on their own – come what may.
I have put all the troughs on bricks or some other means of elevating them off the ground. Quite a few of my troughs are on gravel beds anyway, so it would seem that those would be naturally well drained.
The majority are placed on my deck and are supported by steel stands or bricks/stones. I know the birds are pecking at them all the time since I have to pick up and replace them into the hypertufa pots almost daily. Maybe that repetitive pecking is causing them to die?
But based on the evidence I am seeing, I don’t want to take any chances.
Growth Cycle of the Sempervivum
I have always had the Sempervivums flower and then die afterwards which is typical of the life cycle. But I don’t recall that they rotted like this. At least on the flower end. I remember them drying out, not turning black.
I know the Mother Hen rots but I usually had a dry stalk to try and bag to catch all the “dust” which would be the infinitesimal seeds. But these are wetly rotted, so I don’t have any hopes of getting seeds.
These semps have a lot of rotted petals beneath, so I am going to pull them out and put them over into a drying pan. I wonder if I should pull them all off, clean them and let them callous, and wait to see if they will sprout?
This particular semp is not showing any major problem yet. But I can see where the lower petals are turning brown. This is typically, for me, how they naturally age as opposed to the entire rotting process as in the picture above this one.
This one is possibly just a center Mother hen which has its chicks on stolons coming out from the Mother hen. She would just be dying in her natural cycle then? Perhaps it is the jovibarba type?
( Sorry, but I get really confused about which one is which. Whenever I think I have it, a see another reference that gets me all confused again.)
These are some of the healthy ( I think ) looking ones. They are sometimes right beside or even in the same trough. Or the trough or bowl next to one another. So they are getting the same rain or watering. ( I have hardly had to do any watering at all since it is has been so rainy.)
I don’t want to lose any of my semps if I can help it. I like to have lots of chicks to plant in new troughs, since you know I have an addiction to hypertufa.In fact, I have quite a few new ones waiting to be planted as I write.
I have to make MORE!
And before I finish, here is a short video of the lowly earthworm crossing a landscape timber in the gravel beds. Watch for the photo bombs by the little rolly polly or pillbug!