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  1. yogagrammy liked a post in a topic by yogafire in Orchids   
    So... am I screwed if I already cut the entire stem from the base?  When one died, I trimmed just the top, but I didn't seal the opening, and the entire stem eventually dried up.  So that's why when the second spike's flowers fell off, I just trimmed at the base.  The other orchid plant I did this for eventually grew a new one, but I don't know how. Does it just take faith and patience?
    Is it OK for the roots to extend outside of the pot? They're just randomly curling around the top of the pot, and if I try to shove them back in, the roots will break.
    Last question - once I had such a prolific orchid branch of flowers that it snapped off due to its own weight.  What kind of support or other methods could I have done to prevent that?  The funny thing is that when the orchid fell onto the floor, my rabbit got a taste of how delicious the orchids were.  So later when the same orchid bloomed for a second time, I had the orchid sitting on a window sill, close to a couch.  Well, my rabbit has such a great sense of smell that she jumped onto the couch, onto the arm of the couch that was very close to the window sill, and reached over just enough to tip over the orchid plant onto the floor. So, she had a second feast. I am just glad that orchids are completely edible and safe.
    One last story about orchids on how tasty they are - I hope this tale will help some!  To save water, I stored water I used to wash vegetables in a container. However, it was a few weeks before I used it, so I watered the orchids inside, and oh dear, there was an awful smell.  The water had gotten moldy or something, so, I left the orchids outside in my backyard to "air out" and have the sun kill it.  I left it out overnight because I was so afraid of the smell, and then, the next day, I found half eaten orchid flowers and an almost entirely eaten orchid leaf!  Then, I peered inside one of the plants. and I saw some round, somewhat translucent pearls.  I remember seeing a lot of slugs come out at night, so I go google what slug eggs look like, and, ugh! Not only did a slug eat most of my orchid flowers, she also laid eggs as a calling card.  I then got some disposable chopsticks and picked out each one.  Luckily, there was no more smell and no more eggs, so the orchids are back happily indoors. So, please let this be a warning to never leave your orchids outside, or if you do, make sure you check for eggs. Or don't store stagnant water.
  2. yogagrammy liked a post in a topic by Oak in Orchids   
    There is no harm in keeping the plant despite being chopped off, unless you need the pot for a thriving plant. I am interested in finding out whether it will still grow? Though it will be a long wait. It was my husband's grandmother from Norway who initially told me about pruning your orchids and tapping cinnamon on the wound to seal + prevent bacteria growth. Next time we speak I will have to see if she has anything to add on. Next orchid do not trim to the base, typically trim just before the curve begins at the top. Otherwise youtube and google can be your best friend!
    The vegetable water would of been filled of bacteria etc that you initially wanted removed form the veggies. Always discard - especially for indoor plants Sounds like you have had quite the relationship with orchids, and bunnies! I hope it is smooth sailing from here on out!
  3. yogagrammy liked a post in a topic by yogafire in Orchids   
    Thank for all of these more specific tips! I do have some orchid food but wasn't sure how often I should be using it.  I need to look up a video for repotting because that sounded like too much work for me at first.
    After learning from your original post that it takes 4 years, how do you not let that add to the "overworry" that is probably killing the poor plant? I hope my crazy anecdotes don't suggest I've been torturing them, it's all been purely accidental!
  4. yogagrammy liked a post in a topic by Yogabliss in Orchids   
    Hi Kupo
    I know right ! That is how I felt after learning all the background information on orchids, it just helps you see them in a different way
  5. yogagrammy liked a post in a topic by LarryD517 in Orchids   
    There are a few problems trying to cultivate orchids.
    Most mass commercial growers will pot the plant in peat moss. Peat will hold moisture for an incredibly long time freeing merchant (think Home Depot) from having to water it on a set schedule. Peat is an excellent short term solution (especially  if the plant will be shipped or placed for sale in a poor location for hydration), but not a good long term growing medium. Eventually it dries out. Once dried, paradoxically, it can't be rewet to its former superior  moisture holding state. Further, unlike the proper potting soils, it doesn't provide the appropriate nutrition for a growing or flowering plant.
    Most people get their orchids and keep them in the plastics pots they came in. While each plant variety has different moisture needs, plastic pots hold in excessive moisture, damaging the plant in the case of over watering. Clay pots will wick excess moisture. Some (few) plants prefer plastic pots, though. I focus on cacti and succulents, never bothered with orchids, so I'm not sure...a quick internet search can vouch for the proper pot need for an orchid. As such, it's always a good idea to repot plant after you get them, removing as much of the peat from the roots...repottng them in the proper soil mix (each variety prefers a different mix of soils with other "stuff") into an appropriate pot. Finally, the repotting is traumatic for the roots and most plants will require you to wait until they heal before watering, generally a day or two. 
    Plants outgrow pots and need to be repotted to allow the roots to spread. Many plants should be repotted annually to maintain appropriate soil nutrition 
    of course the biggest problem is too much...too little...or the wrong type of water (rain water is much better than tap...collect it next time it rains...but don't let it sit in the summer sun...unless you love Mosquitos)
    Many get orchids as gifts purchased from (how do I put it gently) inferior merchants. Home Depot is great for hammers and nails, but they don't necessarily offer hearty, healthy, well cared for or mature plants. They do offer a few thousand plants trucked in from mass growers tended by inexperienced cultivators, nurtured by fluorescent bulbs and misters. Plants with different needs sit adjacent to each other on the racks. They offer inexpensive plants, but like everything else, you get what you pay for.
    Orchids are difficult to grow,  because it's nearly impossible to recreate their natural environment. They flourish naturally on the side of  Central American mountains (went to an orchid show at Rockefeller Center and talked to a grower to learn this). The mountainside is characterized by searing heat with bright sunlight during the day, followed by the cool moist misty evenings. Few can provide that in their apartments (thus the commonly passed around advice "take it in the bathroom with you when you shower).
    Web forums are excellent sources of advice, but I've found that best advice come from hobby specific forums. You might find someone with some (limited) knowledge of orchids at a yoga forum, but you will probably get better (excellent) information at orchid specific forums, populated by seasoned growers, all providing top notch advice based on years of successful cultivation (after all, I guess you can go to an orchid oriented forum to ask about increasing hamstring flexibility, but you'd probably get better advice here  )
    Two final tips, search youtube for "orchid cultivation", there are tons of instructional videos. Also, if you're lucky enough to live near an orchid show, find one and attend. You'll meet enthusiasts, many of whom will share their knowledge with you.
    Last point, orchids are notoriously the most difficult plant to grow...caveat emptor 
  6. yogagrammy liked a post in a topic by yogafire in Orchids   

    Larry, don't downplay your own knowledge!  
    To me, the purpose of these off topic forums are not to get the most expert advice but to talk about similar interests casually in an open community.   I've seen other internet forums rip newbies apart, and here at YBC, everyone is respectful and welcoming, and no one gets impatient answering commonly asked questions. I'm not a serious gardener / orchid owner, so, expert advice is intimidating because, honestly, I am not going to do all those things. Me on an orchid / gardening forum would be equivalent to someone coming on the YBC forum saying, "I want to touch my toes," but refuse to do any forward folds.  I am definitely pushing the limit, but I wanted to reinforce Yogabliss's first post - too much worry can kill the orchid.
    I also realize I'd get lectured  on an "expert forum" for not repotting - you can see in my first picture I have left the orchid in the same plastic pot, and the moss has dried up.  But, Larry's post explained to me why it can be easy to overwater after the moss dries up whereas before all I heard was that I was "supposed to repot every year" and never understood why. Thanks!  I need to hold off on repotting since I have new spikes growing, but I will mitigate my watering schedule to compensate now.
  7. yogagrammy liked a post in a topic by LarryD517 in Orchids
  8. yogagrammy liked a post in a topic by yogafire in Orchids   
    Thank you everyone on this thread for encouraging me to be patient with my orchids. I stuck with caring them for 1-2 years even without any flowers.  I wanted to give an update that orchids will still rebloom, even if you sabotage them like I did!  
    It took 1-2 years to regrow (based on my grand sample size of 2) a new spike. In comparison, it was 6 months to grow a new branch (side spike) when I cut from the node. My apartment faces north, so it only gets more direct sunlight during spring / summer, which is when I would usually see the new spikes or branches come out.
    Luckily I took some pics with the date, so here are some data points.  
    Spike = stem that grows from the bottom of the plant
    Branch (my definition) = a stem that grows sideways from an existing spike out
    Purple Orchid Timeline:
    May 2013: New orchid - starts to bloom so much, the stem breaks off from too much weight.  (First picture: Holding the broken stem in my hands. I sure was sad then!  Meanwhile, my bunny was ecstatic to eat the flowers later) Fall 2013: Flowers die off, I cut the ENTIRE spike #1 off. Oops. Spring 2014: Brand new spike #2 grows. Oct 2014: Flowers fall from new spike #2. I follow Oak's advice and cut off above the highest nub and seal with cinnamon April 2015: A new branch #1 starts to grow off spike #2, right underneath the sealed cut!  (Second picture: spike #2 with cut off branch on right, old, dried out spike #1 cut off on the left) June 2015: Flowers bloom off spike #2, branch #1. Aug 2015: Flowers fall off, a brand new spike #3 is growing on its own!  I need to cut off branch #1 and see when branch #2 comes. White Orchid Timeline:
    July 2013: Receive as gift with two spikes! August 2015: Almost fully bloomed brand new spike, after cutting off both original spikes. (Last picture: interesting to note that the roots are longer outside of the pot than the other orchid - but both seem to be the same type?) Anyone still have an orchid that is still thriving?  Hopefully, these two examples can help lessen the worry!  
    Caveat: I have not repotted these even though I have gone through multiple blooming cycles, so it appears that my time duration may be longer than others.

  9. yogagrammy liked a post in a topic by Yogabliss in Orchids   
    I was explained at the orchid your that in nature orchids actually grow upside down , their base would be up on a tree and grow downward to the ground , that is why the vines are so skinny and we need to support them to gro up, the roots are ok to be outside of the pot since that is true nature, they are seeking oxygen and they will grow out of the pot we just need to leave them alone , another fact is that your orchid is growing in moss and after the completist ion of the blooming cycle it should be repotted and its recommended to do this annually to promote new roots.
    It would have to be repotted after the blooming cycle and transferred to a grow mix that you can buy at a home store it contains the food that the orchid needs and bark to keep the moisture in
    Also everyother watering should be done with a mix of water and orchid food to keep you r plant healthy
    I know , there are a lot of little details to follow and orchids should definitely come with an intruction manual
  10. yogagrammy liked a post in a topic by Anahata in Struggling in YTT   
    “All the air in.... and all the air out” It sounds so simple but maybe the most important thing.
    “Never allow the posture to damage the breath”
    I’m with Hildegard, the same.
    The worst is guided Savasana! I remember one time after class a student asked the teacher a question. The teacher responded by saying weren’t you listening to what I was saying during Savasana? I thought to myself jokingly; How could we possibly been listening to anything anyone was saying! You told us to go into Savasana!
    But others like things done a little differently so have to give a little of both. Good luck with your training
  11. yogagrammy liked a post in a topic by Hildegard in Struggling in YTT   
    For what it's worth, as a yoga student I have to say I appreciate the silent moments during class and I never think they're awkward. It's important for me to know how long we'll be in a certain pose (otherwise my brain starts going into overdrive trying to guess when we'll have to move), but if I'm told we'll stay in a pose for five breaths or that the instructor will let us know when we'll move it's all good. Moments of silence during class allow me to focus on my breath once again and find my center, calm down if I'm feeling a touch upset and just be in the moment.
    There's so much noise during out everyday lives that I truly appreciate the quietness you can find in so many yoga classes.
    Good luck with your teacher training!
  12. yogagrammy liked a post in a topic by YogaByCandace in Struggling in YTT   
    One of the most popular comments I get on my YouTube channel is praise for NOT talking so much. If you have a class around a particular theme, or you're feeling very passionate about an off the mat lesson that you're applying on the mat (or vice versa), then by all means, sing that lesson loud and proud.... but otherwise, let people soak up the silence. It's probably the one time in their day that they have some quiet. It might be uncomfortable for you and maybe even them, but find a little pocket of comfort in the discomfort. The other thing I used to do when I was feeling this way (believe me, we all feel this way!) is say, "We'll be here for about ten breaths." That lets them know they're going to be in silence for a while, and is a good self reminder to breathe and relax. 
    Other things that have helped me - going to more classes and seeing what other teachers cue. Sometimes things they say are so beautiful and are something I can integrate into my teaching style. Other things, not so much. And then I also realize that as a student, I am not as critical of the teacher as when I am the teacher and am criticizing myself! It's a good way to take the pressure off yourself. 
    Another thing I'd do when driving to teach the class would be to actually say certain things out loud in the car. Practicing the welcome, practicing the transition cues I know I often mess up - saying all those things aloud was really helpful. Stick with it - above all, practice is the best way to improve.
  13. yogagrammy liked a post in a topic by brenskip55 in Struggling in YTT   
    Yep - I find that in general, in life, it's always about remembering to breathe. I tend to get nervous and talk to quickly, because time seems to go so slowly when you're in front of a room of students. So I tell myself before each class that my challenge is to slow down and savor the transition - the space between each breath, the space between each cue.
    And it comes with practice.  And yes! You will be a completely changed person when you come out. If you thought a yoga high was awesome. The yoga teacher training high is even better!
  14. yogagrammy liked a post in a topic by AnandaYoga in Struggling in YTT   
    That was really, really helpful thank you!! It seems like everyone else is just so natural at it, but that may be my own perception.  The lead instructor is begging me to breathe when I teach and I find that SO hard because there's already so much going on in my head, how dare you ask me to breathe??
    You are so right that it's way more difficult than you imagine.  In many ways, too...mentally, physically, and spiritually.  I'm absolutely going to be a totally changed person after this!
  15. yogagrammy liked a post in a topic by brenskip55 in Struggling in YTT   
    Don't stress! We've all been there. Finding your voice is probably the hardest part of the training, and honestly, I didn't really find my true voice until I had already been out in the world teaching. It takes time for everyone - you're not alone!
    And I know exactly what you're talking about with the silent moments - try to just allow the silence to be. If you find that it feels unnatural and awkward, you can even play around with cuing it - "Stay here and find comfort in the sound of just your own breath" or something like that. It allows people to understand that there will be a silent moment, but that doesn't mean to lose focus. It's also a good reminder for YOU to breathe and relax. I like to cue my students to refocus by telling them selves "I am breathing in, I am breathing out" and I also use that for myself as well.
    Stick with it and don't lose sleep over it. Teacher training was much more difficult in actuality than I ever imagined it would be when I signed up. But you get through it. And when you're done, you'll have accomplished such a wonderful thing! So allow yourself to let go a bit - it's ok to make mistakes - it's how we learn! 
  16. yogagrammy liked a post in a topic by AnandaYoga in Struggling in YTT   
    So, I'm in week 4 of my 12 week teacher training.  My first class is on April 18!!!! I am so nervous, and I feel so unprepared.  I expected my teaching voice to come naturally, I consider myself an advanced yoga practitioner and I thought that would translate to being a great teacher...but boy does it not.  Students do not care if I can do scorpion, handstand, or grasshopper. They only want me to lead them through an hour of yoga.   This is probably such a duh thing for most people, but I truly didn't think I would have such a hard time finding my teaching voice.  Definitely a very humbling experience and an ego check.  I'm really struggling with what to say during the silent parts, like when they are resting in down dog for 5 breaths.  It just goes silent and is so awkward, my mind goes blank and I can't remember ANY cues.  I would so appreciate any advice that anyone has to offer, I'm really losing sleep over this. :/
  17. yogagrammy liked a post in a topic by Michellew in Feeling unprepared to teach after training   
    Thank you for your replies! I couldn't agree more and really appreciate the tips. I will also use the resources you provided (just ordered all 3 of Mark Stephens books.) Sometimes I think I'm just terrified of not being the teacher I expect of myself starting out. But you're so right @brenskip55 that that's just not practical. My husband reminds me the same thing. As much as I'd like to have a yoga mentor or friend to run things by, I do not which is how I ended up turning to this forum. Many of the people I graduated training with have found themselves in the same boat. But I will persevere! ?  Thanks again for taking the time to reply! 
  18. yogagrammy liked a post in a topic by Anahata in YTT -my intuition said no, but I didn't listen   
    I like to think of yoga as a pile of stuff that is sitting there and we get to look it over and decide what we want to do with it.
    A good teacher helps us figure out what is in the pile. Then it is up to us to decide what to do with it. Not the teacher forcing their opinion on us.
    Sometimes the teacher is another person sometimes the teacher is ourselves.
    Whatever these teachers were doing in Thailand doesn't really sound like the yoga I know. Maybe it was their version of yoga. But definitely not your version.  Who Owns Yoga? Video
    Maybe this time didn't work out for you, and I am sorry to hear that. But next time, if there is a next time, you will know what to look for and won't settle for anything less than the best for you. 
  19. yogagrammy liked a post in a topic by YogaByCandace in YTT -my intuition said no, but I didn't listen   
    @canarie I'm so sorry for what you went through. I always try to warn people when they ask about yoga teacher trainings. They are big, BIG money-makers for the instructors who host them. Biiiiig money-makers. (Side note: it's interesting your training dismissed capitalism but charged $2500 for a training) So I always try to encourage people to really do their homework on the teacher, take a class if possible, but if not, research the teacher and curriculum, ask for samples, etc, because more often than not, the price is a huge investment. I was in a similar situation in terms of my training. I was based in Germany, so I hadn't taken any classes with my teacher. I did a lot of research though, yet there were still a few things that bothered me. There were certain things that were said that I just sort of felt  about. Luckily, my group was a pretty outspoken bunch, though, so if I didn't have the courage to disagree with what I was hearing, someone else did, and then we all had a discussion about it and more often than not, just agreed to disagree.
    I totally understand you taking a break from asana. That makes sense to me after what you've been through. So take that break. Do other things you enjoy. Find your joy again. And then revisit it when you're ready. In the meantime, like @ananadayoga said, you can practice other limbs. It's just another facet of your practice. 
    Remember that sometimes our darkest moments turn into the thing we're most grateful to have endured. The tough times, when looked at from the right angle, can offer so many lessons. As Brenna pointed out here, now you know what you didn't want in a training. One day when (if?) you are offering trainings, you will know what to avoid. You will be able to create an environment that is welcoming and accepting of all people and lifestyle choices. Your training also taught you the power of marketing. You know exactly what they said to get you, and now you'll know what to look out for in the future. Lots of little blessings, you just have to look a little harder when they're hidden by such a negative veil. 
  20. yogagrammy liked a post in a topic by yogafire in YTT -my intuition said no, but I didn't listen   
    I'm sorry to hear about your experience, too.  I agree with Brenna about the control.. think of the surrender as "letting go of control".  That is hard to accept, but you did the best you could back then and now you are in recovery mode. The things you are doing now are indulging in yourself because you didn't allow any of that while you were at YTT. You don't feel good about it because you know it isn't healthy in the long-term, but, give yourself a break and cut back slowly.
    I see teacher bios list multiple teacher trainings that inspire them - I suspect some may not have resonated well with them, which is why they took more.  So you learned one perspective (that seemed extreme) - to know what you want is to also learn what you don't want. Now you can make your own and cultivate your own practice from there.
    I also would never say to not take emotions seriously - they will not pass if you don't let them surface, so don't berate yourself for crying. I cry relatively easily, but it's an emotional release that I learned not to get embarrassed about because, it's one way for me to process them and "have them pass".  I think you were at a crossroads then - you could have left early and wonder if you made the right decision. Instead, you stayed (honestly, it seemed to be all as sunk costs by that point from an economic standpoint). In hindsight it wasn't right for you, but, that's a learning.
  21. yogagrammy liked a post in a topic by brenskip55 in YTT -my intuition said no, but I didn't listen   
    I'm so sorry to hear that you didn't have a good experience with YTT. My best reminder to you would be this: You can't control anything in this world, not the things that happen, not the way people treat you; but you can control the way you react to it. Maybe try to focus on something good that you got out of the training. Maybe you can take the experiences that you had in training and turn them into something productive and positive. It sounds like you learned, if nothing else, what you don't  want in a training/practice. So maybe step back into the world and seek out those things that were lacking.
    Try not to beat yourself up too much about choices you made in the past and simply move forward with a new knowledge and understanding of what it is that really does serve you in this life.
    Wishing you the best.
  22. afriske liked a post in a topic by yogagrammy in Yoga Tattoos...?   
    I also read somewhere that it also depends on where you put the om symbol and that it isn't to be on lower part of your body like feet. I may be wrong but something to look into before getting one. Other than that I say go for it! I love tattoos!!!
  23. yogagrammy liked a post in a topic by YogaByCandace in Yoga Tattoos...?   
    Serious question - have you considered writing a blog or a book? I would read both!
    I feel you! Why do we do this to ourselves? I have to re-read The Four Agreements, but I can identify so much with this. My family is part Lebanese so I identify with a Middle Eastern heritage, although I don't speak Arabic, have never been to Lebanon, etc etc. (Although I can make some deeeee-licious yebret.) Anyway, on FB with the recent attacks in Paris, I have been seeing some horrible blanket statements about people from the Middle East, and I rage about it internally because they think about it like "them" and "us" and yet don't realize that they grew up with people (myself included) who have this background...but I don't feel I have a right to say anything because I'm not Middle Eastern "enough" so I just de-friend them (you can't negotiate with ignorant people anyway)  and call it a day, but yeah, these stories we make up, woof. Over them!
    This all day!
  24. yogagrammy liked a post in a topic by LarryD517 in Yoga Tattoos...?   
    My two cents...there are very few expressions I despise more than that one.
    We're all one people.
    I'm Jewish and take no offense when someone uses the phrase "schmuck" (unless I'm the target). I couldn't care less if anything that we say or do originated somewhere else...or in someone else's tribe. 
    I love Chinese and Italian food (although not on the same plate); when I had hair I wore it in an Afro style (we used to call it a Jew-fro);l I enjoy Corona and Stella Artrois beer; I love Brussels Sprouts, Swiss Cheese, English Muffins, Greek Style Yogurt and French Fries; I drink Green Tea; I watch a Korean (South, not North) TV; I drive a Japanese car (made in Kentucky); I drink Poland Spring water; I practice yoga (and enjoy hearing the Sanskrit names for the asanas); and love watching Kung Fu movies; I'm pretty sure the gas in my car comes from either Saudi Arabia, Mexico, Brazil, Venezuela or Iraq.
    I'm American, but my grandparents were from Austria, Poland/Russia (the town went back and forth in the late 1800s), Germany and Lithuania, but according to the Passover Haggadah, my ancestors were living in Egypt.  I'm a man (oops!) person of the world! 
    Let's stop worrying about being politically correct and enjoy the few short years we all have here. If you like doing long as no one is hurt by it, just do it! 
  25. yogagrammy liked a post in a topic by yogafire in Yoga Tattoos...?   
    I found this conversation interesting, even though I don't personally care for tattoos. But, I thought, why are we so afraid that we're committing cultural appropriation when it actually is cultural appreciation?  
    People who judge may have their own issues and insecurities, and you have to realize it isn't about you and not let it get to you.  I say this from my personal experience of being the one who was judging tattoos!  I'm ethnically Chinese, born in the US, and before I would roll my eyes at non-Asians who tattooed themselves with Chinese characters, and even laughed when the characters were missing strokes, etc.  I was judging because I assumed that person was ignorant of Chinese culture and tattooed only because the character(s) "looked cool".  But in reality, I was insecure of my own identity of how "Chinese" I was because I can't speak the language, and I always communicate to my parents in English.  So instead of acknowledging the possibility that there were non-Asians that could speak fluent Chinese while I couldn't, I made up a story in my head to put them down to make myself feel better.  Even up to last week, I said to my husband, "I feel bad that I'm not as Chinese as you are," (since his family speaks fluently), and he said "that's not true, you have the same values".  
    And I think that's what you are representing or expressing, the values that om signify for you.  As long as there is sincerity without ignorance, no one should be afraid to express appreciation of other cultures and languages.