Sunday, May 30, 2010

instructional ~ how to care for tillandsias

post by terreliza

~about~ tillandsias, or air plants as they are also known, belong to the bromeliad family. they collect nutrients and water through scales on their leaves instead of through their roots. 

~step one~ when you first meet your tillandsia, immerse it in tepid water and then allow it to dry. 

~housing~ air plants like a bright position near a window, but not direct sun where they will burn. in offices, fluorescent lighting should be adequate. air plants do not like frost. 

~drinking~ a misting or dunking in water (take it out of the orb first!) once a week should keep your air plant happy. in dry conditions, or in an air conditioned or heated environments, your plant may require more water. the plant should be almost dry between waterings. too much water is worse for air plants than too little.

~eating~ tillandsias absorb most of what they need from the air. if you think it is necessary, you can spray your airplant with a very dilute seaweed solution.

~trouble shooting~
brown leaf tips = dehydration or too much sun 
limp, soft or shrinking leaves = dehydration
yellowing or dropping leaves = too much water
reaching of leaves = not enough light 

if you are in Australia, you can buy tillandsias online at the terradctl store.

meet team terradctl

terreliza ~ robotanist and anarchaeologist.
terreliza is our resident green thumb and the only one with an actual qualification in botany. when she's not keeping the rest of the team in line, you'll probably find her making something with power tools or robo-stitching on one of her home-engineered sewing contraptions.

june buggy ~ ex-jillaroo and holder of the tt mechanical bullriding trophy.
june is a feisty gen-y free spirit, recently returned from her gap year working on a cattle station in the australian outback. when she's not in the tt office (which is most of the time), you'll probably find her riding her postie bike along the coast road with her guitar strapped to her back.

repete ~ tt’s resident carny and occasional mummy’s boy.
repete is the younger twin of the Golden Child, pete, and in twenty two years still hasn't quite dealt with coming out second. when he's not being tt's resident grumpy old man, you might find him in a cravat playing chess with the other old men in the park. or, if it's well after dark, dancing with his top off in the latest trendy nightclub.

in this spore borne air

post by repete

there’s something a bit tragic about tagging, the thought of a whole subculture of people with no better way to make a mark on the world than to scrawl it in thick black texta. my thirteen year old cousin is a tagger and he does it for the adrenalin, not to leave his mark or send a message, but because he loves the buzz of maybe getting caught, and that’s just as tragic ~ are there not more productive ways to channel his pubescent need to take risks? rock climbing or mountain biking perhaps?

of course, tagging is a world away from street art, which i adore. the distinction seems to be having something to say. banksy is the obvious example, but somehow his messages are starting to fade as their price tags inflate and they are hung on the walls of Hollywood mansions, or covered with Perspex and advertised in tourism brochures. not quite in the spirit of transient, counterculture street art graffiti, and certainly losing some of its voice in the process. the reaction in some places, including Melbourne, has been to graffiti the graffiti, by drawing on a moustache or just pouring paint over it ~ it’s a post-graffiti movement.

enter moss graffiti ~ with an inbuilt green message and inbuilt impermanence ~ temporary street art at its most temporary, like these pieces, which i believe are all by anna garforth and eleanor stevens.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

facebook killed the postcard star

post by june buggy

seriously, who writes letters anymore? even my nanna has a facebook page so she can pick my future husband out of the drunken, artistically angled iphone snaps that my so-called friends post the morning after. And by ‘post’ i mean post online. gone are the days of the 45 cent stamp (i hear they’re 55 cents now! outrageous!) and waiting two days for delivery, or more if you live more than a city away. me and my gen y mates want, nay need, instant gratification, even when we’re spread across the four corners of the globe (yes, i know it is spherical, thanks). facebook killed the postcard star and nobody’s hand writing an obituary.

but just say i was going to write a postcard, perhaps to my nan. this is the one i’d go for. she loves a good plant and would certainly appreciate this little number from postcarden. shame about all those pesky quarantine laws– i guess i’ll just send her some pixels instead.

Monday, May 24, 2010

handmade hearts of may

post by terreliza
oh, poor neglected blog... university and the fear of failure have forced you to the backburner.  here are some lovely things to keep you company until i return... soon, i promise.

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

a succulent by any other name

post by terreliza

my friend teresa bakes the most delectable cakes you could ever hope to delect. and her last name is baker. it was the fourteenth century europeans who invented surnames when they started to identify people by their career choice. perhaps the lovely miss baker inherited her talent along with her name.

i can’t help but wonder if the same can be said of flora grubb, the creative green thumb behind flora grubb gardens. flora designs modern succulent floral arrangements and bouquets, and has become famous for her vertical succulent gardens. what an excellent solution so small-space gardening! i’m working on building one of these ~ stay tuned for the post.

Monday, May 3, 2010

terradctl shop open for business

the terradctl shop is now open at etsy and madeit! many thanks to the lovely folk at little ribbons and boutique karma for dispersing terradctl terrariums around the blogosphere.

Sunday, May 2, 2010

fly me to the moon

post by terreliza

the über mod terrariums of lìtill look like the kinds of places where little martians might feel at home. tillandsias, succulents, pine cones, polymer clay landscaping and dried australian billy buttons (also called craspedia) are planted in snowy white substrate. the vessels themselves are organic looking hand blown blobs made specially for lìtill. the combination of living, dead and manmade elements would be almost distopian if it weren’t so clean and sharp looking. these terrariums might be a bit high maintenance for some (the different plants and fixtures all need a different care routine) and a bit exy for others (prices start at US$150) but in the right place they would look absolutely amazing.