Tuesday, May 17, 2011

More 'English' English

Sheep dip - Make an individual go through an inspection.
"We'll have each programme manager go through the 'sheep dip'..."

by the drumbeat - by the timetable
"By the August drumbeat we'll have this baseline sorted"

lost the plot - Losing the point of the discussion
"Its no point asking Keith. He lost the plot before we even arrived at the issue"

POETS day - Friday i.e.
'Piss Off Early Tomorrow's Saturday'

getting on his soapbox - 'used metaphorically to describe a person engaging in often flamboyant impromptu or unofficial public speaking'~Wikipedia
'There he goes, getting on his soapbox'

Saturday, May 07, 2011

The Green Thumb + Purple Finger

I must be turning English day-by-day dabbling in gardening and such. It all started when I moved into Limehouse and saw the sorry looking empty pots with the various levels of decaying beings which once lived in them. My colleagues laughed when I told them about my 'garden' because the 'garden' really is a few pots and containers. Forgetting that being English, they probably live in the suburbs/countryside and have a real garden which makes it pretty amusing after all.

Then a trip to B&Q saw me buying some seeds, compost and a seed tray which I thought was pretty cool and little did I know when I planted those seeds in the compost lined cells, I'd unwittingly planted something else too i.e. a high and bordering-geeky interest in horticulture. I guess looking at it from a psychodynamic perspective; my childhood experience involved an exposure of gardening as my mother gardened a lot hence my unconscious interest in plants experiencing a revival.

Nevertheless I planted some seeds and labeled them
As it was cold still (that was mid-March 2011), I put the clear plastic cover to insulate them but later took it off as I noticed spores of white fungus in the compost which would multiply quicker if kept in an enclosed area. Apparently I should have bought seedling compost as these are sterilized - fungus in the compost is normally harmless but could 'kill' or 'dampen-off' seedlings.

Then came a period of watching the seedlings everyday - which involved staring at black compost most of the time as they take at least 14 days to germinate (which seemed like an eternity). The weather in the UK turned suddenly early April which was happy news for all things green and saw the sudden overnight sprouting of the seeds.

In the midst of waiting for the seeds to germinate, my impatience for flowers and plants saw me and Khoi going to Colombia market to get 'already-potted' plants and I randomly picked a few based on its 'prettiness' and colour (a common mistake), not really knowing its countenance and type.

An important fact to remember about caring for plants are that they are no less different from a dog or a cat - apparently they need light, food, warmth, water, rest and grooming just like an animal - how fascinating! An excellent book I discovered on choosing plants was 'The House Plant Expert' by Dr. D.G. Hessayon which lists almost every house plant variety and its characteristics. With new information I cultivated some more plants from my first 2 plants which I kept since moving from the old place.

Meanwhile my seedlings were growing up slowly but surely and the persistent warm weather. The tomatoes have a few premature looking buds (plant itself is about 2 feet high) and would need to be repotted in a bigger container. The coriander is starting to yellow after 2months but still fragrant- think the life span of the plant is pretty short after a month. The french dwarf beans are still growing and haven't started any flowers yet.

And since we're talking of green thumbs, might as well talk of the other colored digit that got smashed at ultimate a few weeks ago