May Lotito

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since Jun 11, 2020
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Recent posts by May Lotito

I saw spider plants and pothos in the Wheaton lab chandelier. They are easy to care and fast growing to cover the frame.  Orchid has air roots to absorb moisture so it will benefit from the moist microclimate from a group of houseplants. Take it down when it blooms to enjoy the flowers if it's too high up there.
10 hours ago
Pothos, philodendron, Hoya, fern are all good choices
21 hours ago
Sewing doll clothes is so fun and I am sure your girl will enjoy them!
Many of the current patterns are for bigger American Girl dolls but if you look up Etsy there are many older ones for barbie girls. Pick the one that has a collection of different types: top, pants, skirts etc so you just need one and make unlimited modifications as you like.

Doll clothes use very little fabrics and it's not economical to buy yardage. I would recommend the as they recycle and resell scraps by colors or materials with a reasonable price. Them are of good quality and unique designs and very interesting to work with.

Velcro, snaps, or ties are all good choices for closure. Fold over elastics, ribbon, rickrack, laces are nice to enhance the looks too.

I am looking forward to seeing your creations.
1 day ago
Hi Anne, the colors are so vivid and stunning from bluebonnet and blanket flowers! I traveled in Texas before and did see lots of them growing by the roads. No wonder bluebonnet is the state flower of Texas.
5 days ago
For people who wears stretchy T-shirts and jeans, it seems mission impossible to sew them on her own with a home machine. But with the right tools and some practice, it certainly can be done with satisfying results.

If you look at a RTW shirt, it probably has serged seams, cover stitched hems, ribbed neckband with matching colors and maybe some prints or decorations so it's not plain. It takes professional machines and can be quite costly to create the same look start from scratch.  But there are ways to work around it and still achieve the look you like. Anita and others have very good tips there I also suggest the followings:

   1. Lots of knit fabrics don't ravel so edge finishing may not necessary
    2. Use specialized needles for knits such as ball point or stretch needles. Test stitch length and tension on scraps
    3. Slightly stretch the fabric while doing straight stitching, the seams will have some give
    4. Use self fabric for neckline or colorblock. There are different ways of doing neckband and choose the suitable one for a flat and durable neckline.
    5. Use twin needles for a mock cover stitched hem. Press and mark well so the hems are neat and even.
    6. A sewing machine with adjustable pressor foot pressure will make sewing easier
    7. Use printed fabric, add embellishments or do the Alabama chanin style stitching to get a more interesting look
    8. Start with loose fitting stable knit for easier sewing then move on to trickier fabric.

For the bottoms, start with PJ style pull-up pants or shorts for causal wearing. Then work up with more sophisticated details such as welt pockets or a zipper fly front. I made myself quite a few jean style pants but I do have a overlock machine.
1 week ago

T Blankinship wrote:Bumbles bees I have heard like to dive into flowers. This is something I would like to see! I have been working on creating a pollinator lawn and trying and mostly failing to get a hive of honeybees going.

Good to know about the hops! The top bumble bee magnet in my garden is actually the luffa, and honeybees prefer other types of squashes.
For the lawn, white clovers attract so many bees that I got stung multiple times walking barefoot.
1 week ago
Hi Permies in the North half, have you started planning for your garden this year? I have been collecting and introducing native wildflowers to my garden. They not only look beautiful but also provide foods for the pollinators. I am offering limited amount of Midwest wildflower seeds to Permies users interested in the topic.

What are the seeds?

I am offering a bundle of eight, no individual request. They are a mix of self seeding annuals or perennials with the native range east of the Rocky mostly.

1. Common violet, probably Missouri violet. Violoa sororia
2. Red clover. Trifolium pratense
3. Butterfly weed. Asclepias tuberose
4. Tall green milkweed. A. Hirtella
5. Purple milkweed. A. Purpurascens
6. Foxglove beardtoungue. Penstemon digitalis
7. Showy partridge pea. Chamaecrista fasciculata
8. Tickseed sunflower. Bidens aristosa

All the milkweed seeds have been cold stratified and have 100% germination rate if planted in the potting mix.

How to request?

Offer is limited to mailing address of US lower 48 states only. I have 10 bundles total and will update when the seeds are out.

1. Post a rely listing your favorite flowers the types of pollinators they attract. They can be native or non native flowers
2. Send me an address in the purple mooseage as well.

We have quite a few posts discussing flowers and pollinators, please check them out and share your pictures.

Name the top plants in your yard for bees.
Post flowers native or non-native

Happy gardening!
1 week ago
Lady beetles in the wild simply hibernate through the winter so I guess maybe you can keep them for quite some time in the fridge.
I don't know anything about the feed. If I want some aphids quickly, I will just fertilize a tomato with excess nitrogen and the aphids will appear out of nowhere and multiple asexually.
1 week ago
Unlike plants growing in the ground, potted plants can't seek their nutrient elsewhere except the limited media they are provided.  Houseplants are usually slower growing and more resilient so a lot of time the deficiency in the potting soil isn't noticable for a long time. Thus it is very important to check if the houseplants are growing as they should given the right conditions. Here are my recent experiences with some poor quality mix and how they affected the plants.

I used to buy potting mix at the store for houseplants without any problem. Things were different last year and two out of three bagged potting mix were tainted and my dicotyledon plants showed abnormal growth in it. Reluctant to throw 3 cubic ft of mix away, I used the rest for repotting monocots, as they were supposed not to be as sensitive. Most of them did well but certain species stopped growing or even died away. After the big parlor palm died I uprooted it and was surprised to see no root growing into the new mix underneath. My snake plants survived but again no sign of new root growth, and hence no top growth. I washed out the roots and replanted in the mix with home made compost. New leaves are visibly growing a week or two later, gaining 1cm every three days, that's quite speedy for a slow grower like snake plant. So was a golden pothos, I had never seen a pothos that wouldn't grow. Now it is a happy vine after changing the soil.

Another example is a store bought lime tree. I had no idea what was wrong with the potting material that looked like composted barks. But after no growth for two months despite lots of liquid fertilizer and sunlight, I repotted this too. New leaves started to sprout from the tip of every branch and the new leaves are several times bigger. Worrying about excess nitrogen, I looked up online and found out that was the normal leaf size for a lime tree and all the old leaves were somehow stunted. It was unbelievable a tree coming from a nursery was so unhealthy to begin with.

Now I am a bit paranoid about outside resource and start switching to home made potting soil. If you have plants that are not growing it may not be your fault, try changing the soil and it might work out magically.

1 week ago
I did the same too. Also new shoots are easy to root and propagate. So come spring time there will be multiple plants ready for the flower garden. They are sold for maybe $5-10 per pot, so overwintering geraniums indoor saves a lot of money.