My DIY backyard gardening adventures

Backyard Gardening Update – February 2014

I know I’ve been posting the same photos of our backyard plants for months now. But I am glad we are still able to keep most of the varieties still alive and kicking despite some worrisome bugs and weather issues we’ve had over the past year.

Somehow, I have also managed (or should I say restrained) myself from over pruning and ‘disturbing’ the plants for months. Thanks to my busy work schedule and NOT being an obsessive compulsive gardener. Sometimes, it really pays off just letting the plants be and not worrying too much about possibilities of pests lurking and pruning just for the sake of being in a ‘gardening mode’.

The below photos may have slightly changed since my last update. Most of the plants have grown taller and/or with more foliage and larger leaves. Some plants have reduced in height due to previous pruning and re-planting.

backyard garden plants

ti plants, aglaonemas, citrus in the paint bucket, bougainvilleas, chinese bamboo, persian shield, coleus, corn plant, welcome plant, colocasia, and others

backyard garden plants

coleus, aglaonema, dwarf ti plants, white angel, italian oregano, scheflera, and others

I have also relocated the two pandakaki plants. Unfortunately the leaves are shriveling because of white flies and larvae underneath the leaves (tiny yellow buggers!). Seems the dish washing + water that I use as repellent is no longer working on these critters. I’d have to add pounded garlic, onion and hot chili pepper to make the concoction more potent (and also a bit stinky).

backyard garden plants

golden garland, devil’s ivy, avocado seedlings, sour sop seedlings, maiden hair fern, etc.

I have relocated some of the plants here beside the wall that gets more sun rays. These plants are hardier than the aglaonemas and colocasia plants. And the avocado and sour sop seedlings are growing steadily. The problem now is where to plant them in our backyard garden. We’re planning to give them away to some of our relatives or friends with large backyards. We don’t want these seedlings to go to waste as we need more trees these days.

white bougainvillea

white bougainvillea

After months of not having any flowers, our white bougainvillea plant finally has blooms! The little light green bracts are still so young in these photos. I can’t wait for all of them to turn white. I also noticed that there are more flowers this time around.

orange bougainvillea

orange bougainvillea

And finally, our orange bougainvillea has new flowers after many months. When we bought the juvenile plant, it has orange blooms. But those easily died after we planted the cutting. We waited for this plant to grow bigger and thrive despite the changing weather. And at long last we can see a couple of orange blooms.

Perhaps it is safe to say that for almost two years, our garden is still thriving and kind of promising with the way the plants are growing. And every time I write an update about our tiny backyard garden, I always have some sort of realization which I tend to reflect on. And it is almost always about how nature takes its course, how it plays an important role in the way living things change over time, and how we (as humans) should take part and enjoy this gift of nature.


  1. Ken's Gravatar Ken
    March 21, 2014    

    I’m glad that you keep on updating your blog. I’ve been visiting your blog monthly and following your garden escapades. :) I’m new to gardening(only started last december) and so far I’m loving it. I’m into container gardening too because our yard is covered with concrete. My mom used to collect differents plants before so I have a lot of empty clay pots to use.

    • March 23, 2014    

      Hello, Ken.

      Thanks for dropping by and reading the posts.

      I do my best to have at least two updates a month coz of my busy schedule. =)

      I’m glad you enjoy container gardening especially today. We do need more greenery especially in the urban areas.

  2. JM's Gravatar JM
    March 7, 2014    

    Lately I became very interested in growing plants but I can’t find sources online that is local. So I created a forum for Filipinos who are into gardening:

    Please help me grow the community. Feel free to signup and post. Thanks.

    • March 7, 2014    

      Hi, Jim.

      Thank you for invite. It will take time to grow the community, but I am sure it will be a good place for kababayans to hang out and talk about gardening.

      I will sign up soon.

      All the best!

  3. candy's Gravatar candy
    February 26, 2014    

    Thanks for sharing your realization to let nature take its natural course. I am a newbie gardener and I have this “inip factor” about the plants that I have. I think i have this OC nature to always want to see these plants in their nursery view and so when I see leaves falling, turning yellow or black, stems turning woody etc., I get so so disappointed. 4 of my plants have died because I pulled them off ! One Citrosa Geranium I pulled today because it turned so leggy and limpy and to my surprise, I found the roots so rotten ! No wonder! I have been watering these poor little babies and they are in a location where they are not under direct sun. They are in a plantbox under a skylight and so they only get dappled light but our weather now doesn’t even give them that dappled light. I am worried about my other plants like my newly acquired periwinkles ( i have 2). Their leaves are turning black at the edges and I noticed that some are curling ! Do you think its ” overwatering” that is causing this ? I think I really have to step back a bit and just let them be…just don’t “kulit” them too much and like what you say – let nature take its course on these poor little babies….

    • February 27, 2014    

      Hello, Candy.

      Over-watering is one culprit that kills plants, so does being OC sometimes. I’ve been there and I’ve learned that lesson pretty hard ‘coz lots of our plants died.

      I believe one of the most common problems that home gardeners have is not enough space to grow these plants on the ground. Like the periwinkle or vinca, it is considered a ground cover, but I’ve planted them in pots instead. And may have over-watered them as well. I have seen the curling of leaves in those plants before, and I guess over-watering and planting them in containers caused their untimely deaths. These plants can thrive under the sun and in partial shade. And they can be drought-resistant as well.

      I hope you’ll find time in researching about the plants that you purchase and try growing at home. It takes a bit of effort on our part since we are still learning. Some people have innate abilities to grow anything, but some – like us – need to research and execute. To help you out, you can go to this website and look for the plants that you have in your garden — Gardening How-To: Periwinkle Care. Just browse the pages on that gardening website to get started.

      Good luck!

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