I have been meaning to work on this blog for a while. Things get in the way sometimes. But I'm finally back to post some new pictures and tell how the Salvia is growing.
It has been a great summer, weather-wise. No Maine summer in recent history could compare so nicely with a tropical climate. Unfortunately for the natural plants around the yard a very serious lack of rain is probably going to hurt them this year. The reason for this is that we also had such dry winter--only one or two snow storms.
But for the plants I'm raising and able to water everyday, the increased sunny days have been a real ally. Temperatures have been averaging 85 F. And we have had more humid days than we have for a long time.
The Salvia has grown into a family of over 150 plants. I bought some better pots (deeper) and have been using only Miracle Grow potting soil. I have been feeding them with plant food every week. No the cream of the crop are my 16 large (~20") beautiful clone-ready plants (shown in the photo above). They really are amazing, having grown from a height of 6" in only 2.5 months. This is the type of growth you can expect when conditions are right. I just need to sell them now.
As you can see by the most recent photos, there was no longer a need for the windhouse going from about June 1, on. And June and July were VERY hot and sunny. I had the larger plants near the Heavenly Blue Morning Glory vines, out in the middle of the yard. That was a mistake. The sun bleached them into a yellowish green color. So (as luck would have it, right be before a small tornado ripped through the yard) I moved all the Salvia into the shadier region against the barn. A large rose bush provided nice afternoon cover to the smaller plants and the larger ones began to recover in the shorter exposure area. I could make 100 clones a month now but I'm not selling enough to be able to afford to buy more pots and soil.
I had issues with a brown beetle species too. They would sleep during the day under the boards and pallets around the plants and then after sunset crawl up and eat the leaves. Their tell-tale excretions and munched leaves seen each morning alerted me to their presence. Eventually I realized that if I went out at about 10:00 pm I could catch the little buggers chomping away. I noticed as I picked them off the plants that they were quite helpless there in my plastic cup. They made a kind of buzzing noise and all huddled (6 of them) together. They have wings but didn't seem to remember to use them. Since I don't kill anything for no reason I took them to the way back field and dumped them out, with plan of watching to see if they would return the next night. They didn't. There were a couple individuals I missed the first night and I scooped them up and relocated them as well. I had no further problems with these guys. Besides inch worms (that were only a problem in mid July) I have seen no further pests that like eating the very bitter leaves of Salvia.
So readjusting for less direct sunlight and solving the pest problem helped keep the Salvia family growing.
Here is a short video I put together that takes a walk through my very small inventory of Salvia divinorum plants and seed-plants...
Here is a breakdown of prices for live Salvia divinorum plants...
I am not in a position to pay for advertising or else I'd be able to sell these plants like crazy. Prejudice and ignorance about this species has also been a big struggle for me. Soon I should be able to offer credit card sales again. This time it will be through a friend of mine who specializes in entheogenic sales. I should know more about that and will announce the team-up by the end of next month.
[Live plants available to Maine residents only.]