There’s a lot going on in my writing world, but there’s also been great progress with my Desert Rose! If you’ve gotten this far, you probably already know about the Audrey Saga. Well, following on from attempting to grow my own VFT, and the success of my herbs last year, my sister (who buys the best presents) bought me another growing kit.

This time I’m growing Adenium Obesum. It’s a type of flowering bonsai more commonly known as Desert Rose. I’m not too sure what colour flowers I will end up with – more than likely they’ll be pink! I’ve also got some seeds which produce blue flowers, but I’m trialling my first batch of five for now.

So the kit comes with some special potting soil, fertiliser, a seed tray and a growing pot. It’s basically got everything you need as a beginner grower of bonsai plants. I had to soak  my seeds for 2-3 hours in warm water firstly to ‘activate’ them (when you buy them, they’re dormant so that they don’t sprout or die). The heat must do something to make them think they’re in correct growing conditions. I sowed them in a thin layer of the potting soil and barely covered them.

16441488_10154540666047690_736847421_n

Within a day or two, I had something which looked like this. Already, one of my five seeds had begun to send out a taproot. Great! I had watered my seeds in and also placed them near a radiator so that they were warm enough. Seeds don’t need light to germinate so don’t worry about putting them on a windowsill.

I actually did place the seed tray on top of the radiator a couple of times when it was on to provide the seeds with more warmth in order to encourage them to germinate. I only recommend doing this if you’re not going to forget, because it will quickly dry out the soil. I usually water my seeds just as the soil begins to feel as though it will be completely dried out on the following day. I have my own small watering can, but as long as you’ve got some way of carefully controlling how much water you put in, I think anything would suffice for holding your water (I use water out of the tap).

There’s not a lot to the rest. You’ve got to have patience, and a good memory, and that’s about it. My first rooting seed was quickly overtaken by the second, which put out a taproot after about five days and then quickly germinated two days after that. A third began to send out roots and sprouted, and I’ve got a fourth coming along too. My fifth and last seed I think is probably a dud, since it’s not done anything in the 3-4 weeks I’ve had these seeds in.

16507267_10154540666162690_1005128856_n

After about 2-3 weeks I had something that looked like this. I’d planned to take a picture every day, but I’ll probably remember every week. 4/5 of my seeds have begun to send out roots and germinate. There’s even tiny leaves on top of two of the sprouting stems.

I can’t really do much else but water them and keep the seedlings warm at this point. When they begin to produce real leaves, I’ll transplant them to the growing pot.

I’m wondering at this stage whether to move them somewhere with more light, but our bathroom has great conditions at the minute besides that. Apart from the one seedling which is miles ahead of the rest, I’m conscious the other seeds haven’t done much in a while. I’m cautious to change the conditions in case they all get too cold – but I can always move them back!

Update #2 will come in a few weeks when there’s been more progress.

If you’d like to try out this kit or any of the available kits the site has, you can purchase your own here. I think the prices are reasonable and you can reuse the seed tray and growing pots. I would be wary of paying anything less than the prices listed there, as it may mean that your seeds aren’t viable.

That’s all for today. If you have any tips for me I’d love to hear them, as this is my first time growing something other than herbs successfully from seed. I’m eager to see how these little plants grow!