Friday, May 30, 2014

May 2014: my beloved plants...gone from near death n back again.

After their week of near death chilli baby plants have bounced back to life thankfully!! 

Like a proud Mama, I watch their new development everyday, seeing them growing new leaves to replace those lost due to my inexperience. Such simple joy! Of course all my man asked was "so where are the chillies?!!" I gave him my best death glare:)

From experience, I realise now that the longer I delay taking the seedling out to the open to stand up to the variety of weather, the tougher it is on my plant. 

I did an experiment. I moved 4 pots out to the open (didn't harden them to climatise for 2 weeks as required but I was lucky it was cloudy that period)

The 4 that were growing in the open blossom and bounced back from withered and sickly yellow leaves. The 2 I left indoor was growing at half of the rate. 

With just 2 weeks head start, the first four seedlings have grown thicker stems, as well as huge leaves regardless of pot size. The 2 indoor ones were like captain America before being pumped with super being serum. U get the drift... See the stunted growth of the newly converted outdoor version & comparatively lesser leaves as those shown above?

Another mini test I did was to crushed hard boiled eggs shells and mixed it into the soil. Maybe 2 weeks are too early to tell, maybe I'm imagining it but I suspect it contributed to the greening back of leaves from earlier sickly state.

However given my roof has no shade and the summer sun is mercilessly intense, some of their leaves were bleached much to my horror. 

So had to construct some form of "rain n sun" shade that can withstand the constant wind, but not completely depriving them of the light. 

Let's hope this works!
I dread to think of Typhoon 8 though. Gonna be a bitch shifting all my pots!!

Not quite sure wats going on with that rosemary. It looks kinda sickly to me and so I'm not eating from it but just growing it to build up experience. I think I overwater it back when it was indoors n just when the stem started to brown, I brought them up n expect them to die but nope, maybe the sun cured it n now I see new leaves. Still, we shall see. 

As for my darling lavender, not good prognosis. I think it's too hard n hot at their tender age. They are dropping like flies. I must not have dry off their leaves after watering  n the sun scorched them. The younger ones just died. Damnit. One has purple leaves now. A sign if it dying soon. 

On a happier note, I'm proud to present my healthy bushy Basil!! See how much it grows!!! Comparing to the last photo I showed, such a difference one week made! Again, my man only thinks of eating them.... Sob sob. Good thing I grew plenty of basil for his plucking. They do taste quite good with my fried eggs I must say:)

It's close to 6pm now and the sun is finally setting. Time to keep the laundry n start cooking! 

Thursday, May 29, 2014

May 2014: Hong Kong: HKGCC Free Ride Day!

29th May 2014


Yup, you read right. Is there any other way to say it except for....

A campaign launched since 2011, Public and tourists can enjoy free rides on any tram between Kennedy Town and Shau Kei Wan on May 29. This year’s Free Ride Day covers over 100. The Star Ferry routes have also been expanded to include crossings between Tsimshatsui and Wanchai, in addition to the Tsimshatsui-Central route."

The event meant to convey the message: ‘Building a Prosperous Hong Kong with All Members of Society.’

Source: Read here

Do we ever have anything as such in Singapore? Not that I can rem. All that I can ever rem back home is the constant "justification" of increasing transport prices. If there is any discount or "free", it always come hand in hand with an agenda or problem such as to ease traffic congestion, train breakdown etc but not because it's of goodwill to the society.

I think Hk people, has the heart in the right place.

Friday, May 23, 2014

May 2014: @Mr Wong restaurant, doing the Westernised dim sum thingie

May 2014

What's coming back to Sydney without taking mum n dad to somewhere nice, a break from their normal mundane routine? 

So off we went to Mr Wong! Parking was a nitemare around there. Expensive too!!! Prob cost us A$50 just for parking!!

Service here was prompt and food was less expensive than we thought, as compared to Chinese restaurant in Sydney, not HK. 

There are hits n misses and I didn't take pictures of everything we ate. The roasted duck was good, liked the spring roll n scallop steamed dumpling. Vege was a tad salty and the cheong fan not great.

Thursday, May 22, 2014

May 2014: A Trip back home to Sydney

After my man quit his job, we thought we would make a quick trip back to Oz to say hi to Mum and Dad. Plus it would also be nice to see our little niece Isabella. She's one fiesty one I tell you! No crossing that lovable Izzie.. but before that, we had to check into service apartment Adina because our folks are coming to stay with us.

Our first experience with Adina quickly prove to be our last. While extremely convenient right at Townhall area, With regrets we couldnt even stay for the full 4 days and we moved back to Langham hotel by the 3rd day. It was just too freaking noisy over there at Adina..I can hear the bell and the bloody road traffic. The windows were not double glazing n the aircon doesn't work well in our first room. We gave feedback as to why we had to leave but the front desk exclaimed denial and told us they never had any complaints before. Yeah rite. Maybe people just couldn't be bothered to tell u Missy. If my old folks with not so great hearing agree it was noisy, imagine wat it does to my sensitive ears!!!

At langham, we could a room with the harbor view while folks were happy with the road view as there were hardly cars coursing thru. 

Nice eve. The skyline in oz is always breathtaking. 

We drove to Wollongong to visit my man's brother. It was a beautiful day. was rely funny that Izzie. She wants to play mummy n guess I'm her baby. Else she is shop keeper and I'm her customer. Bossy little thing but def most interesting of the lot amongst the rest of the clan. 

We taught her to press camera from my iPhone and said "Go tell Daddy u took a selfie!" She happily ran to kitchen chirping "Daddy daddy! Selfie!!" It was hilarious. I hope her mummy is ok coz she is very strict about no TV n gadget stuff. Ha! 

May 2014: It's the Season to Grow Herbs!!

May 2014

My green fingers are on full steam ahead and I have been planting several things. Some more successful than others.

Starting from March, I had been growing chilli plant from seed. The progress was awesome until it hits a snag when we went off a week back to Oz on hol without watering and so the seedlings suffered a drought shock and started to drop leaves. So I'm back to tending it with ample TLC and hopefully to resurrect it without having to go back to Square one.

Looking back at the whole process from an inconspicuous seed, it is rather fulfilling to watch them grow from nothing. Everyday, it's a joy to see them growing taller. I dont have much morning light indoors and so its so funny to watch them bend sideways reaching towards the light and I have to do pot rotation every day to get them growing straightup.

Right now, my chilli plant seem to be bigger and I decided it's time to move them up the roof.

Mar: After 1 week, the seedling sprouts! Horray!

Forming first set of leaves

April: The true leaves begin to form
After two weeks, I think my chilli plants are slowly back on track to recovery but its one slow process. All of them had dropped off the bottom 2-4 leaves. So now they seemed to be trying to grow back leaves at the bottom instead of top to recompensate for the loss. Some leaves looked a little on the yellow side. It's either from lack of nitrogen or magnesium. Not sure which but I had to resist from watering them before I drown them again in my over eagerness to curb the drought shock. Plus the humidity does not make it easy for me and I had to stick my finger into the soil to check for moisture. My nails are seriously getting grubby!
May: My Chilli Seedlings still recovering from shock but slow recovery. 

Meanwhile, had a ball getting and growing other plants from seeds.

Lavender is the hardest to grow because they take forever and I dont think they like humid HK weather very much. Still I try my best. The seeds lay dormant for the longest time because when I planted them in late Feb, the weather was still cool. Plus, I killed 2 seedlings without realising as babies, they really dont like strong sun. through trial and error, I grew my 2nd batch and they seemed to be thriving! My first born is of course still my fav!

My first Lavender seedling

Lavender seedlings waving Hi!

 I didnt know its so easy growing Basil from seedling and unfortunately I got ahead of myself and over sow the amount of seeds and so now I have a monster growth! They got too full from the small pot and so I had to buy bigger pots to contain both Basil and Corriander. Lesson learnt, Basil are easy to move but NOT corry. Coriander are just too fragile to uproot and move. Killed half of the crop. Damn. But those that survive seemed to be growing beautifully.
My Repotted Basil seedlings!

1st May: My seedgrown basil, oregano, coriander seedlings after one week!

20th May: My corry are sprouting their first set of true leaves! 
As for my Mr Mint...they are LOVING it up there. They are so weedy but so NOT needy. I could basically not care about them and stick it in direct sun and even with rain onslaught, they are propagating like mad!!! They did suffer a drought shock too when I was away in Oz and there was NO rain. Where's the fking rain when I need them? So half of the mint leaves were decimated. I was so freaking sad.

However fast forward 2 weeks from half dead plant, the Mint bounced back and rewarded my TLC with PLENTY of mini Mint. Even had to give it a good trim because the naughty fellow was creeping out of the pot onto the ground. That translate to a good cup of fresh pipping hot Mint tea for me. Gotto love my Mr Mint!

20th Feb 2014: The initial week up on roof

20th May: Look at how much they have grown!!!
Fresh mint tea!

April 2014: Spending some time with an old friend.

April 2014

SK had to leave HK earlier than scheduled as his granny passed away. Since Vince can't change his flight, I was more than happy to host him for extra 3 days. It was like going back to hostel days when we will just lobo around the campus. Lol.

We woke up early to have dim sum at Chung Cusine. 

We made a trip to the Art Museum to only find it close. Sigh. No luck.

Meanwhile, he was happy to help out in the kitchen and be my assistant peeling prawn shell. Lol. He didnt even have to lift a finger at home when his wife cooks. Oh how I "ill treat" my good ole friend.  Well, there is no free lunch in the world. haaaa. Ok in return, I peeled those longans for him.

When we are free, we would pop up to my rooftop to enjoy the breeze and sun, staring at the green mountains - translated to breeding grounds for insects.

It was definitely nicer to be up there with friends than by myself.

 One of the nights, it was some Blood moon event and it was amazing to see the bright reddish orange moon!