Tag Archives: winter

Northern Michigan’s Ice Caves

While not a true cave, water continuously drips over this ledge and thickens throughout the winter to form a wall of ice you can walk behind.

Venturing North from Chicago this past holiday weekend, I hiked to the Eben Ice Caves in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula. The Caves are located in the town of Eben outside of Munising.

We went on Christmas Day and found the ice to be forming but not as thick as usual by this time of year. These icicles will continue to form into a nearly solid wall that you can walk behind. While called “caves”, the depth of the rock wall behind the ice isn’t deeper than what you can see in the photos. To see the rest of my ice cave photos, visit the Wicker Rooftop Facebook page. Notice all the color variations in the ice as well as photos of mosses thriving in the cave under the ice.

Directions to the Caves

Is Your Christmas Cactus Ready?

If you’re like me and like your Christmas cactus (Wiki – schlumbergera) to flower during the winter months, it may not be too late to force budding if they haven’t started to do so naturally.

If the weather in your area is predicted to have cool (high 40s to low 60s), but not freezing, day time temperatures, simply set your cactus outside for several days this week. Be sure to take it back in at night so it’s not exposed to freezing temps or artificial night lighting. If you have a cool basement, that may be enough to induce buds. In the winter months you should allow the cactus to go longer without watering than in warmer months. Start watering less but don’t let the cactus go for so long without water that it droops and causes buds to drop.

After the blossoms have dried up for the year, let the cactus rest. Allow it go for longer periods without watering and don’t fertilize. Around February or March you can gradually start introducing occasional light fertilizer and increase watering… your plant is preparing for springtime and new growth.

The various types of holiday cactus are a pretty hardy and self-sufficient lot. But with a helping hand in late fall, you can easily have bountiful blooms during the holidays.