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Caring For Your Amaryllis

I've been noticing a lot of searches leading people to my blog looking for information on how to care for their Amaryllis bulbs. Based on the nature of the queries that lead to my blog I'll try to answer them from my experience growing these since last year.

I purchased a few Amaryllis bulbs last year from Target after the Holidays. Because of the discounts they were less than two dollars a piece. The bulbs didn't look so great and it was to be expected after sitting in those boxes on a shelf for weeks and who knows how long they were in them sitting in a warehouse. When you bring your Amaryllis home take it out of the box and discard the soil disc it comes in. If the pot it came with doesn't have drainage holes make some or find a suitable pot. Good drainage is key to healthy houseplants. The next step is to plant it in good soil, I added charcoal and Perlite to the regular potting soil I use.

"Why won't my Amaryllis grow?"

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Extreme Let Down ABC Edition

I don't usually watch Extreme Makeover Home Edition but I tuned in last night because it was helping the Noyola family here in Chicago and I had heard the home was going to be a Green Build. After watching the hour-long reality show I didn't really understand how it was "Green." I don't live a Green lifestyle but I'm fascinated by it especially in how it can be used to build affordable homes in high density areas like Chicago.

I was really disappointed by ABC and the show. Here they had the chance to showcase a lot of the things that have been implemented in Chicago. But all I saw bamboo flooring, recycled carpeting and coffee tables made from the old lumber that was in the house before they tore it out. That's it? None of those things even offset the carbon footprint made by Ty Pennington's hair. Considering how much hype the episode got here in the English and Spanish language news I was hoping that they would go all out and show us some ways that we can lower our heating and air condition bill with things like the Roof Top Garden at city hall that has received national attention.

Yes they built a nice roof top deck with some plants that will be a nice selling point in a few years when the Noyola family has to sell their home because they can't afford the property taxes because of the influx of yuppies to Pilsen. Instead of buying them all violins they should have put a garden on that roof and shown them how to grow their own vegetables and change the eating habits of those kids that are at risk for diabetes.

They could have cut out a couple of the self-indulgent scenes of Ty Pennington acting like a fool at the Sears on State and mentioned that residents of Chicago can apply for Energy Grants and Loans to offset the cost of going Green.

Extreme Makeover Home Edition and ABC could have done a lot of things that would have changed the lives of the Noyola family and the lives of a lot of residents here. Instead they payed lip service to (and ignored) the advances made here in Chicago in energy conservation and urban beautification.

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