Amarylliszwiebel einpflanzen

Die Amarylliszwiebeln

Bei den Amarylliszwiebeln hier handelt es sich um ein paar sehr alte Exemplare. Sie haben sich über die Jahre, meist zu Weihnachten, angesammelt. Ich denke bei allen handelt es sich um günstige Supermarktartikel. Dies ist ein kleines Glücksspiel, denn nicht immer haben diese die Farbe die auf dem Etikett abgedruckt wurde. Ich hatte vor eine weiße, eine rote und einen rosafarbenen Ritterstern zu haben. Letztendlich habe ich zwei rote und einen weißen. Unten sieht man sie auf dem Foto. Es sind zwei sehr kleine Zwiebeln dabei. Bei einer handelt es sich um ein Kindel (ich weiß nicht von welcher Farbe).

Man sieht schon deutlich, dass die Amarylliszwiebeln gelitten haben. Im Sommer habe ich versucht sie im Garten wachsen zu lassen und sie wurden deutlich von Schnecken angefressen. Deswegen gibt es eine kleine, sehr kleine. Die war einfach zu lecker für die Schnecken.

Amarylliszwiebeln - im Garten ausgesetzt und von Schnecken angefressen.
Amarylliszwiebeln – im Garten ausgesetzt und von Schnecken angefressen.

Amarylliszwiebel einpflanzen

Zum Einpflanzen habe ich normale Erde aus dem Garten genommen. Diese ist bei mir sehr lehmhaltig und wird sehr hart. Ich hoffe die Amaryllis kommt trotzdem damit zurecht. Da gerade Schnee liegt kann ich nicht nach guter Erde suchen und habe das erstbeste genommen, was ich gefunden habe. Es sind Mulch und Wurzelreste in der Erde. Diese werden sie hoffentlich etwas weicher machen, aber auch die wenigen vorhandenen Nährstoffe entziehen. Sobald die Amaryllis zu wachsen beginnen sollte ich sie anfangen zu düngen.

frisch eingepflanzte Amarylliszwiebeln
frisch eingepflanzte Amarylliszwiebeln

Beim Einpflanzen der Amaryllis gibt es nicht viel zu beachten. Ich habe sie lieber etwas tiefer in der Erde, damit sie beim Blühen nicht umfallen. Es muss aber ein gutes Stück der Zwiebel aus der Erde schauen, damit sie nicht schimmeln.

Amaryllis pflegen

Die Rittersterne sollen schön blühen und die Zwiebeln immer größer werden. Damit das gelingt muss man ein paar Dinge beachten. Die Pflege selbst ist nicht schwierig. Man darf nicht die Zwiebeln gießen. Deshalb ist es gut bereits beim Einfplanzen keinen zu kleinen Topf zu verwenden. Dann kann man immer gut auf die Erde gießen und die Zwiebel bleibt trocken. Mit Hitze kommt die Amaryllis erstaunlich gut zurecht. Ich konnte meine immer in der Nähe der Heizung lassen. Zuletzt braucht die Pflanze für das Wachstum auch Nährstoffe. Also sollte sie ab- und an gedüngt werden. Es ist immer einfacher, den Dünger niedrig konzentriert oft zu zuführen als hohen Dosen selten. Hier besonders aufpassen, die Zwiebel nicht nass zu machen. Wenn das zu kompliziert ist tuen es auch einfache Düngestäbchen.


Ich bin jetzt erst einmal fertig mit dem Pflanzen und warte wie sich die Amaryllis entwickelt. Wenn sich was tut, gebe ich hier ein Update.


2009 habe ich das erste mal über die Amaryllis geschrieben. Hier die Beiträge

Auspflanzen der Amaryllis.

Die ersten Blätter an der Amaryllis.


Art painting with oil and acrylic

new category: artblog

Hello world,

I again found great pleasure in painting. Quite a number of paintings have been done recently. In fact I’m writing this, while waiting for a canvas to dry. It all started again after going to an exhibition of modern art and enjoying some great paintings. I want to use this platform to share my work and my view to certain topics, where I find it could help others. I am mainly into abstract art right now. I sometimes struggled a bit starting a painting. Great pieces of art have been formed by techniques, which seem to be unadequate at first glance.

Jackson Pollock dripped paint uncontrolled over canvas, Gerhard Richter blurred fine paintings Ad Reinhardt made canvases appear only black when you look only briefly at them and Mark Rothko painted undefined boxes of „some“ color. All this can be theoretically done by everyone. It can destroy a nice white canvas or generate a masterpiece worth tens of millions of Euros. What makes the difference between both is often hard to quantify. One thing is obvious: those paintings show bravery. The artist was not afraid to „spoil“ a huge canvas. I found this feeling blocked me in the beginning. For a long time my best painting was one I did only to relax. I didn’t care for the outcome. Nevertheless the result was in my opinion unreached for a few years. Finally being back to this point a door opens for many paintings I enjoy painting and watching at.

Here I’ll show my paintings to you. I hope you’ll enjoy watching at them or can maybe learn something for your work – in case you paint. The first lesson, which helped me very much to improve my paintings was:

Just dare!

Enjoy art.

Paintings coming up soon

I have been quite productive during the last weeks and generated a number of paintings. Some I consider to be „real pictures“, others just studies. But also they were made to try some things and I learned while doing them. So I’ll also present them here. As well as some general thoughts and hints to you out there…

Painting for fun

After talking about the long past with few paintings and the newer past with more paintings, I like to present the painting with which it all started again – the first oil painting in years. I painted this without having a clear result in mind. I just wanted to paint for fun and really enjoyed it. Somehow this pictures always reminds me on the fun in the creation process. This picture has clear flaws and I don’t know, if people consider it to be good, but for me it’s my favourite.

Untitled - 2008
Untitled – 2008

Untitled (2008)

oil on canvas

60cm x 80cm

(not for sale)

Learning from Jackson Pollock

If you search for paintings of Jackson Pollock you’ll find his „drip paintings“. Liters of low viscosity paint splashed on huge canvases. Fans enjoy looking at those paintings and being able to imagine how Jackson was „painting“ them. But have a look at those paintings. Couldn’t you also do this? I think you could. And if you could and others can, why does someone pay 140 million dollars for one of those paintings, instead of just doing the same for less than 1000$. Obviously because he wants to have an original Pollock. Maybe also because he also especially fell in love with this painting and none of those paintings is accurately reproduceable. Not even Jackson Pollock could do this, would he still be alive. Where exactly how much paint drips to, how they lie above each other is all randomness. But having a close look one will find beauty in it. That is one great thing of abstract art – using randomness.

Painting with chance

After being not happy with the previous paintings I tried a new way. On this picture I allowed the paint to mix on the canvas and even supported it by squeezing and pushing. I actually had it all covered when doing so and couldn’t control the result. Removing the cover from the paint generated nice root like structures and even influenced the way the colors mixed. After I long time this was a great picture. There are so many details, which couldn’t have been created intentionally. Just have a look at the region around the bright blue spot in the top right. Allow chance to play a role in your paintings and you’ll get surprised. This actually is no big surprise 😉


Yellow on the left (2013)

acrylic on canvas

50cm x 60cm

(not for sale)

Painting without fun

I very much enjoyed the first painting I made. It took a long for me to realize, that it was not because of my skill and especially not because of the motive. It was purely because of the feelings I had when painting it. The trials to generate other good pictures where in vain for years. Below you’ll find the only painting I kept for a few years. Some paintings got overpainted, most I destroyed. Even hear some corrections are visible, because I wasn’t achieving the result I wanted. I had to learn again to not care for the results, but for the process. The painting is a bit dusty – it needs some cleaning.


Untitled (2011)

oil on canvas

60cm x 80cm

Painting with color

Classic paintings combine the many shapes with many colors. In this painting I tried to focus only on the use of the colors. It’s easy to see the connection to Mark Rothko, a famous Latvia born US painter. His painting and paintings were very emotional. Rothko wanted to make the viewer feel like he did when painting. Due to his depression this would unfortunately make the ones who truly understand the picture cry.

What made Rothko paint like this was the experience when seeing the painting „Red Studio“ by Henry Matisse, where color and shape where separated. I find this painting technique very appealing. Especially for the early layers the lack of shapes forces to focus on the color and the effect when adding a new layer couldn’t be seen clearer. For me it doesn’t seem tempting to leave viewers of my paintings crying, so that the painting had to be drawn in a more joyful way. On the „thickest“ part, more than ten layers of paint have been applied over each other. Some thicker, but all let the underlying colors shine through.


two times red (2003)

oil on canvas

50cm x 60cm

Learning from Gerhard Richter

Germany born Gerhard Richter is consistently in the top 10 of most expensive selling artists. I adore his early picture paintings. Now he becomes more famous for his abstract works, which get sold for tens of millions of Euros. Looking at them one might ask where’s the skill of the artist in generating those pictures? Those skills are not only technical. Many famous pieces of abstract art don’t show the high technical level as the older art does. Abstract artists are not worse painters – think of Pablo Picasso, who was maybe the most skilled painter as a child. Still in his famous paintings other things are in focus. In abstract art other things are important, and they need other skills. Exactly this we can learn from Gerhard Richter.

The major skill is the courage to destroy the own painting. In his „Abstrakte Bilder“ (abstract paintings) he paints many layers, one after another. Each layer can completely destroy everything. Still he continues applying thick layers of paint on the canvas. In 2006 he painted over 100 hundred pictures called „Weiß“ (white), which he all finished with a thick white layer of paint almost covering everything which was done before. This courage allows you to create „big“ pictures, rather in terms of depth than in size. It’s nice, that at the same time this skill also gives courage. You don’t have to worry about your painting knowing that you can apply a new layer if needed. You still need to be aware of what you are doing, since you don’t want to start from sketch again and again, but this knowledge might take some pressure away.

The second skill now becomes obvious. You don’t want to paint on the same canvas for all your life. What you need to know is when the painting is finished. In my opinion this is the biggest skill of Gerhard Richter in his abstract art. If you have troubles with this, then just take it slow. Just hang the picture after each layer for one week somewhere where you often see it and make up you mind, if the picture needs another layer or not.



Sometimes the unintentional and temporary things are very beautiful. Unfortunately I couldn’t keep this picture as it was. I’m trying to somehow „rescue“ it. Let’s see if I succeed.

a colurful blue abstract oil painting experiment

– (2003)

acrylic on foil (this is actually neither a painting nor „storable“

30cm x 30cm

Painting for money

In my painting „Yellow on the left“ I intensly used colors. In this painting without title I tried to do the same but different. Also here I used much paint and intense colors. The contrast is more on smaller scales. Obviously I also added  brushwork. This picture is the first to be sold. It’s new owners liked how many and how intense colors I used. So far all my pictures (including this one) were painted just for fun. I don’t want to change this because I learned it would spoil the results, but it makes me think if I should look for other people interested in my paintings…

Untitled 1 2013 - oilpainting on canvas
Untitled 1 2013

Untitled 1 (2013)

acrylic on canvas

50cm x 60cm


red painting

As written previously I experimented with „hard-to-control painting techniques“. The results were nice colorful pictures, rich in details. Inspired by Gerhard Richter’s abstract painting 849-3 I also experimented with „squegeeing“. The aim was to get a picture which is not the most colorful, but strong in expression. For the first time also the title was found before I started working on the picture. The motive „Aggression“ is chosen to ensure creating a very strong painting. On the first glimpse I find this title makes sense. What I like very much about this technique is that when looking close there are so many details. Many also not aggressive. You’ll see that the painting is not just red, blue and white. Some of the color mixtures work extremely well. Also small amounts of silver color create appealing affects. The painting has the number 1, because I planned further experiments with this motive on a smaller scale.


Aggression 1 (2013)

acrylic on canvas

50cm x 60cm

 Lines and splash and blue

One piece of the slightly earlier work of mine. An experiment with lines, giving a geometric structures and splashes of red paint. Since it was too boring in white i added different shades of blue. Right now I’m thinking whether to keep it like this or add another layer.

untitled oil painting 2011

Untitled (2011)

oil on canvas

60cm x 80cm

Learning to love the spatula

I’d say life is about learning. Doing painting I could learn more than I expected. Trying things for the first the result is often not exactly as expected, but with time you will very fast get closer. One thing to learn is to try new techniques. Here I present the first painting I did with a spatula. Actually it was not so far away from what I wanted. I went for an old, rubbish look, like old newspapers – torn, soaked with water and soil, unreadable but still some bright colors shining through. Obviously that’s not the most happy motive. Because I prefer making enjoyable paintings over depressive ones, I added that yellow  disc with color running down the painting. It should take the focus away from the spatula work, which still takes almost the whole canvas and will provide an interesting background once the eye wanders away from the yellow disc. It probably will only be visible after one or two seconds despite it’s huge area.


reflection of the sun (2013)

acrylic on canvas

50cm x 70cm

abstract oilpainting – seaside 1

I did a lot of experiments with different tools and techniques. To generate a oilpainting in between abstract and realistic I needed to combine many of them. The motive is an ocean and the sky above. Both are blue, both have areas tints and shades a bit of tones and mixed colors. The only difference between the sky and the ocean is the technique which is used to paint. One thing which can’t be seen, is the extreme difference in texture. When sweeping over the painting the sound of the sky area is completely different and much louder than the one the ocean. Maybe for many this is not important, I quite like the little extra in the haptic of the painting.

This oilpainting was done for my bedroom. Finding someone heavily interested in it made me give it away. I’ll probably end up making a new one for my bedroom.

seaside 1 - abstract oilpainting on canvas

Seaside 1 (2013)

oil on canvas

40cm x 50cm


Painting at night

What can you do when you wake up very early in the morning and can’t find sleep? You are perfectly awake, but can’t arrive at work at 4pm, because the colleagues you need are sleeping in their beds? Since I’m posting this here, what I obviously did was painting. The result is the following:

Nightpainting oil on canvas



30cm x 30cm

new abstract work

Another painting inspired by Gerhard Richter. I very much liked his colorful paintings covered by smeared black and white paint. When planning this I thought I’d like most a shiny color. What’s better then I color which most people correlate with a hot sun or burning fire. A clean orange and yellow behind a dirty smear of black, white and grey.  To make it a bit more interesting I added some structure to it.

abstract painting
abstract painting

Untitled 2 – 2013


30cm x 40cm


As you might have noticed, new articles were missing. Due to personal reasons (like vacation 😉 I neither had time to write nor to paint. This will last for a bit more time, but I hope to be able to give some updates soon. Until then:

Merry christmas and a happy new year!

More paintings from me you can find in my artblog. E.g. a green one.

Photography – starting, improving, help and internet

new category: photography

Nothing new in my blog? No new paintings uploaded? Why this?

The answer is rather simple – maybe some of you have guessed – I didn’t paint anything! Why not? Among the reasons -which can be summarized as not enough time- there are two which might be worth mentioning. One is that I went traveling to Asia for some time. I hope everyone understands, that I didn’t want to take my painting stuff with me in my check-in luggage. The second reason is, that I’m not only doing painting. I also like to do photography. So what’s coming up now is of course a new category for photography including also pictures from my trip. I’ll try also the story of how I evolved there, like I hopefully evolve in painting. If you like to have a look already, please visit my flickr-account.

Happy new year!

Top 3 video channels when starting photography

When starting photography there are three problems:

  • deciding which equipment to buy
  • learning how to take good pictures
  • staying motivated after taking „only bad pictures“

To find out what camera is good and what else is needed for the start, I did a long recherche in the internet. Getting tired of all the reading I used youtube for the search and found the first channel, which stayd in my top 3. All of the channels offer reviews of the most important DSLR cameras, some also cover other kind of cameras. Just search their channels for the cameras which you think of buying.

Learning how to take good pictures is impossible by just reading. You at least have to look at some pictures. The step from text and pictures to speech and movies (and pictures) is not so big. It is very helpful to „be part of the process“ when a good picture is taken. For this all three channels offer tutorials which help you to learn the basics of photography.

After getting a new set of equipment, you will probably be very excited and start shooting whatever comes in front of your lens. I found this is perfect for learning. But looking back, there were not many good shots I took amongst the many. The first shot worth mentioning I took after one month. I often went out for taking pictures without any good result. When feeling like it’s just not working also those channels helped me. After seeing new content, getting new ideas and watching people enjoy this hobby I went out again for trying things myself. Of course often I failed again, but even then you are improving. Unfortunately it might feel different.

My description above sounds like a top 1 list will follow up. Actually those three channels are quite similiar, but they still have individual strengths.

Jared Polin does not only have an afro haircut – he covers all the points listed above. This channel I found last. What Jared does better than the others is teaching how to edit RAW pictures. He features a section Raw edit of the week where a selected rawfile gets edited by him, Adam Lerner and his viewers every week. This is a good opportunity to see how a picture is professionally edited, get inspiration for edits and also submit your own getting a short feedback. The reason why I rank the channel „only“ 3rd place is because the editing is not so important at the beginning. Despite you can achieve very much with it, in my opinion shooting good pictures is much more important than editing them right.

Matt Granger that formerly known Nikon guy, reviews, teaches, edits, critiques, jokes, … very much like Jared. What style you prefer, you can judge for yourself. One thing I like most here are the monthly photo competitions. Every month a new topic and only pictures taken this month are allowed to participate. Also every month Matt assures that every camera brand can be used. I guess this might be the reason for the change of the channel name. The pictures have to be submitted via Flickr. So if you have an account there, just participate to try it. Don’t hope for winning, this is too tough in the beginning. So why should you participate then? You can see your picture in his youtube movie which is viewed by thousands, you get a few „free visits“ to your picture and most important you’ll get a short critique of your picture.

Again similar content. One thing is missing here: interaction. No way to submit your photos, participate in regular competitions or make it on their videos other than running around in Hong Kong and looking for them making a video. Why do I still chose them as winner? What that’s them apart? It’s humor! You can get all your information. Maybe a little bit less as somewhere else, but their are just a bit more fun. I think this channel spreads the fun of photography and is suitable to keep you motivated. And that’s the most important thing in improving your skill – never stop taking pictures. One channel I like most here is the Pro Photographer – Cheap Camera Challenge. The best photographer try to take good pictures with the worst cameras. This not only shows that skill and creativity can compensate any lack of material – it also shows that if you are not happy with the pictures you take, it’s not the equipment’s fault.


I hope you like the channels I listed here, if you didn’t know them. Please give your comments. One thing I’d be specially interested in would be other good youtube channels. What’s your top 3?

The start

As a pupil I once was joining the photography course like so many people of my age did. I also took a few pictures later. Then came a break for very roughly two decades. A bit more than two years ago, just before christmas, I bought a decent camera set. After „snapshoting“ with my compact camera, I wanted to do this more serious with a DSLR, changeable lenses, flashes, filters, tripods, … So to start I got a camera and lens. Now what’s the picture you see below? Not very impressive picture, ey? This one is my start into photography again! Like with so many things also photography you have to learn and exercise. So of course many things went wrong at the beginning, many pictures turned out much worse than I expected. But I can encourage everyone, to just go out, take pictures again and again. This picture is one of the early ones I kept in my flickr-Fotostream. It was taken quite exactly one month after I got my hands on a real camera.


Trees and Sky
Trees and Sky
One year: getting some inspiration from the gratest

After some time of photographing you might get a bit tired of it and run out of ideas. In this case it might be worth to look a bit at other pictures. One artist I admire -and I’m probably not the only one with this- is Henri Cartier-Bresson. He made great photographs just because of the motivs and his skills. Again it’s proven, that having the best camera is not necessary for this. Of course during his time he probably had the best, but without the possibilities of modern digital cameras and photo editing he created masterworks. One of his fotos (you can easily find via google „Henri Cartier-Bresson“) showed that a stairway is not necessarily boring. With this finding a nearby stairway I made the photograph below. So look at the masters and your possibilities and you’ll find motivation for new photos. Don’t copy, but be inspired.
photography- stairway

Asian food: satay

As promised one week ago, here is a first picture of my Asia trip. When talking to locals one object of interest is always mentioned: food! No big surprise, you get the best Asian food in Asia. And in Asia Malaysia is rated very high. This stuff is so much better than what you get in Europe’s „Chinese Restaurants“. Actually there you are hardly eating in restaurants, but in „Hawker Centers“. Small food stands on or near the street. Busy street. At least if the food is good. Being back I already missed it. One thing I noticed was, the more fume, smell or fire you could see in front of the stand, the more people were eating there. So I also tried the food from the  stand, which spread the most vapur on the road and it was very good.

photography- food- satay in penang, malaysia
Satay cooking in Penang


Satay cook at the Hawker Center in Georgetown Malaysia (2013)

Vacation in Malta

I’m just back from my vacation in Malta. With temperatures above 30°C I managed to grab a cold. That is true skill. In addition to eating, riding busses, walking, sweating and watching a bit of the soccer world championship I made a lot of pictures. Above 500 to be exact. It’s a long way to go through them and do the editing. I did it so far for one. Why? Because I want to enter Matt Granger’s photo competition. See the video below he announced a competition to the motto „symbol“. So not only is this photo taken during my vacation, it also imho perfectly symbolizes vacation. Let’s see what Matt things of this one.

My photo:

Vacation: sailing into the sun

Wish me good luck!

Lucy in the sky and purple rain (timelapse videos)

My calender tells me it’s summer. My thermometer tells me 15°C. Not only is this the coldest summer I can remember, it’s also the wettest. Despite the sun is hardly visible it’s still worth to look up to the sky sometimes. E.g. when the rain stops and some beautiful clouds are visible. Since I anyway wanted to make some timelapses, I tried it out this time and uploaded them to youtube. It’s actually quite easy, once you know what to do. I might write an tutorial on it. First I made this one:

(Lucy) in the sky:

Next I played a bit around with the levers. I actually did also some work and e.g. removed some flies.

Purple rain (clouds)

Which one you like better? What timelapse you want to see in the future? (only if I can make them – so please no pyramid timelapse suggestions and so…)

I’d also be happy when you share, like, fav or comment the videos.


dramatic red sky from the timelapse video
dramatic red sky from the timelapse video



Every month Matt Granger (Thatnikonguy) starts a photocompetition on youtube. See his announcement here. This month I want to particitpate with my picture „Winterwonderland“.


This is a picture of the mountain Dobratsch. It’s in the Austrian Alps. I took the picture last winter in January. After this month I was suddenly very busy with my real life and also had not taken any nice pictures. Hopefully this will change soon.

Winterwonderland - The Alps (Austria)

Winterwonderland – click on the picture for fullscreen (Flickr)


This photography was taken with a Nikon D5100, a Tamron 17-50mm VCII lens at 17mm, f=18, t=1/320 and ISO 1250! I used a circular polarizer.

One year earlier

I also took I photo quite exactly one year before. See the difference? Not much…

The picture from the same spot one year (eleven moths, to be exact) earlier

The archives



table of content


Fishtanks and water

Wollemi Pine



Wollemi Pine

Fishtanks and water

Just to get a feeling of how the blog evolved and what information is not relevant anymore I created this archive. It is only one thread and will slowly move to the later pages with time time, but might still be a source of valuable information. If you find some topics of it interesting, just comment on it and they might make it to new posts. Hier eine Rubrik für alle alten Beiträge aus dem Blog, die sonst gelöscht werden würden. Erstmal landen sie im Archiv. Wenn euch etwas interessiert, könnt ihr es trotzdem gerne hier kommentieren. Die Beiträge können natürlich auch wieder zurück in’s Blog wandern.



Fishtank and water stuff

My first fishtank this millenium

As a small child I owned a freshwater fishtank (R.I.P.). Since I very much enjoyed the nice view to a small underwater world I decided to build up a new one. Small flats and frequent changes of them prevented me from having a new tank. This changed at least a little and after facing a few very cold, dark winters and seeing aquarium plants and fish in nature (see other blog entries: „Warmbach“) it was too much finally and I bought a „semi-mobile“ 60cm tank. Since I read very much before setting it up I’ll give a small tutorial later. Here I’ll first show my tank.
The tank is 57*35*30cm (Tetra AquaArt 60). In addition to the complete set I bought a thermometer, a mat to put under the aquarium, a back foil, tubes and chemicals.

First I put washed sand in the tank. I decided to take bright one, to get a little „carribean“ style instead of a more mysterious one, which you get, when using a dark ground. It’s very nice in the beginning but probably the worst case in maintenance, since you see every slight amount of dirt. I didn’t care for this, since the tank is mainly for practical learning and growing some plants. For a permanent, more decorative tank I’ll have a bigger one in a few years.


Next I added a few beech roots.

(to be continued – right now I’m facing technical problems uploading pictures. I’m trying to solve this and continue with pictures…)


germination contest

For the upcoming gardening season I took a few old seeds I had, some I got as a present last time ordered something in the gardening shop and some new bought ones. Planted at the same time let’s see how germinates first.

The contestants:

– water lilie blue (self collected, ~10years old)

– water lilie yellow (self collected, ~10 years old, only 2 seeds)

– cosmea (self collected, ~10 years old)

– calendula (self collected, ~7 years old)

– tagetes (self collected, exactly 10 years old)

– special high tagetes (bought, 4 years old)

– sunflower „teddy bear“ (bought 5 years old)

– sunflower „some red and orange mix“ (bought ~5 years old)

– poppy „canadian collection“ (bought, fresh)

– malves „red and white“ (bought fresh)



First place goes to

…Canada! Yes it’s true. obviously the canadian poppy team have no problems with the austrian climate. After only 4 days the first seeds started to germinate. Not 100% sure it’s not the malves, but 90%. Have to wait for the video analysis to be completely sure, but it seems like the poppy „canadian mix“ secured the first place in the germination run with an impressive performance.

Stay tuned for the second place…

Second place

6 days. Less than one week. Already the second plant started to germinate. And it is…. the „high tagetes“ I bought 4 years ago. Still faster than the 10 years old seeds. I guess this makes a difference – let’s see how much. I guess the seeds are quite robust, because the plant uses to seeds itself for the next year. Of course ten years is a long time, so I’m not sure how many of those old seeds from the various plants are still alive. Interestingly the four year old seeds could overtake even one kind of fresh seeds.

 Scandal! Canadian poppy disqualified. New first place!

Bad news for Canadians and poppy fans in the world championship of germination in my flat! The poppy is no poppy. Unfortunately the seeds of the other plant in the same pot looks very similar. Sorry,  it was my mistake since I couldn’t take ten pots for the ten kinds of seeds. Now with more and more seeds germinating I can clearly identify the section of the pot and have to say, it’s the red-and-white malve mixture which was the first to germinate. Of course this scandal goes down to the referee. All this talking about climate adaption of the Canadian plants to the very similiar austria weather – nonsense! The Austrian flag is red-white-red and the red-white-red malve mixture won! It’s clearly a political thing.

One week passed 20% of the plant seeds started germinating. The third place is still to come. Next week will probably be the most interesting one, as according to the seed packs ~10days is an average germination time. Let’s see how many of the very old seeds make it and if they need a third week to wake up.

plant seed germination: and the third place goes to…

After winning the first price, losing it again, the canadian mixed poppy now germinated third. Still quite good. The package said 10-15 days for germination, now after one week the first ones already grow tiny leaves. So the first three places are done. They all go to bought seeds, outperforming my own collected one. Yes, also in this contest it’s all about money ;-). Seriously: I think the age of the seeds make the difference. So maybe leaving them ten years in your flat – not particular cold or dry seems to be quite tough for them. Let’s hope we’ll get some plants despite. So if you plan to keep seeds for a long time, you should think about how to store them or if you can replace them from time to time with fresh ones. As the tagetes showed – 4 years is still OK.

Finally the first self collected, stone old seeds germinate!

Three days after the bought seeds my first self collected seeds germinate. Almost the same as the bought ones. In both cases it’s tagetes. A higher version (bought, 4 years old) versus the „normal“ one (self grown, 10 years old). That’s 50% „slower“ for six year older seeds. So 10 years is not deadly for seeds. And after complaining they finally grew. So maybe complaining helps sometimes ;-).

Go rest of my seeds! (The bought stuff germinated to 100% already)

Oops, a forgotten plant bulb

Just found a bulb of a Calla I removed from the soil during winter. Don’t even know exactly which one. I have a red one and a „picasso“ which is dark purple with white on the outside. One I already planted the other one I just did. I thought I’ll remember which one is which after winter. Obviously I didn’t. Let’s find out….

Forgotten plant bulb germinates

I wrote so much about the germination of the different seeds (and the not germination), I thought I’ll give an update on the Calla. It took two weeks of very wet soil and it started growing. I can see the first leaves coming out and a few root where they pushed the soil aside.  And this in both pots I used. I separated the bulbs because they were very distinct and now am confident, that I’ll grow a lot of plants from those bulbs.

Canadian poppies – which one is the toughest?

I bought a pack of seeds from a „californian mix“ of poppies. They are supposed to be red, white, yellow, orange, pink, purpleish… All colours which are somehow a mixture of red, white, yellow mainly. In one pack fit a lot of seeds. I didn’t put out all, but it was sufficient for >50 plants. They are really difficult to reposition. So getting them out of the pot I killed some, putting them into the soil I killed others. Some were killed by snails, some didn’t get enough water. So now I’m left with a dozen plants. Survivial of the fittest. And one by one they start blossoming. All in the same colour. So now I can answer the question, which colour is the toughest. I got now exactly 9 golden blossom and one yellow-orange. Another clear winner for orange.

Canadian Poppies in the internet

Interestingly searching for Canadian poppy in the internet doesn’t give my plant as a result. Only if I search for the german expression „Kanadischer Mohn“ I get the right pictures. It’s an impressive difference! How are they called in english?

Soccer world championship

I hope it’s not a sign for the soccer world championship in brazil. Holland played very impressive, but I’ll keep my fingers crossed for the german team. They are playing France tonight and I’ll watch with many French. Sounds fun. 🙂

Top5 blossoms to feed slugs

This year I made an unintentional test. Which blossoms are best for feeding slugs. It was quite depressing, but if you have a slug problem. Don’t try those plants, except you want more of them.

5. Hostia: Hey, this one got only eaten after it flowered. Wow. Now the leaves get less and less…

4. Dahlia: Dahlia gets eaten slowly. So that you always think maybe it might survive. Maybe it does blossom. It most likely doesn’t. In my case 5,5 out of 7 died. The sixth I’m not sure and the seventh is heavily tortured.

3. Coriander: Unfortunately no blossom. Often used in the asian cuisine. Seems like slugs like asian.

2. Tagetes (Marigold): It’s a relative to the sunflower and seem to taste similar to the slugs.

1. Sunflowers: Impressive. Even when they are quite big. Every night a few of them get eaten.

Pretty sunflowers. A whole field of them.
Pretty sunflowers. A whole field of them.


Which blossoms do your slugs like most?





Online 2.0 – a self experiment

The web 2.0 offers great ways of interaction for everybody. Despite having this blog for more than six years it’s rarely used. Visitors went down to after zero per day. Beginning of this year I decided to make the self experiment of actively participating in the web 2.0. An twitter account was already created and anused. A youtube account followed. I have a few hobbies I could write about and no clue what’s interesting for you. I don’t even know what you want to read and see. Not even if I should write in my mother tongue or english. What will come next is a mixed salad of different topics served in two language. I’m curious if I can find out what of this you’ll like. This will be the first message which will be blogged and tweeted at the same time. I’ll write updates of my progress. Please support me if you like it.

Twitter: Megamartin3

Youtube: Mar tin


Comment, share, tweet, like, fav, subscribe.



Online 2.0 break

Three months ago I tired to get a bit more online. I started an english section in my blog, twittering, made a youtube account and videos and quite a bunch of new posts. Then quite fast a significant chang in my real life kept me there, so that I couldn’t follow up on this topic as planned. And now I have to say, for twitter and youtube I won’t be able to generate much new content during the next at least 3 months. But I want to take the time to summarize the first 3 months.

Youtube: Mar tin:

3 videos, 534 views, 11 like, 2 dislikes, 2 comments (excluding mine), 1 subscriber -wow! thank you. I’d link your channel here, but I can’t see it.

Twitter: Megamartin3

574 followers,53 tweets (sorry had to spam a bit ant the begining), 1 retweet, some favs and a lot of messages

I have to say, that  it’s really not so difficult to get some views or followers. But interactions is quite difficult. The same in the blog. So please comment.







Langsam geht es (hoffentlich) los. Es wird empfohlen den Mammutbaumsamen 12-24 Stunden in Wasser zu legen. Dies habe ich jetzt getan und kann ihn dann morgen säen.

Der Boden, auf dem gesät wird besteht aus zweimal dem Volumen des gezeigten Glases. Einmal mit Sand und einmal mit Erde gefüllt.

Samen beim Einweichen


Der Samen hat das Wasser leicht bräunlich gefärbt und wurde nun ausgesät. Hierbei ist es wichtig, dass der Samen nicht von Erde bedeckt wird, da es sich um Lichtkeimer handelt. Jetzt ist für eine Woche mit keinen spannenden Veränderungen zu rechnen – ich hoffe danach schon.


Mittlerweile habe ich mehrfach gelesen, dass die Keimrate der bei 3…2…1… gekauften Samen so gering ist, dass bei meiner überschaubaren Anzahl an Samen mit keinem Erfolg zu rechnen ist. Aber es dauert noch mindestens eine halbe Woche bis mit der Keimung frühestens zu rechnen wäre. Es ist also auch noch etwas früh das ganze negativ zu sehen, zumal so etwas zu vermuten war und ich die Samen nur dort gekauft habe, weil sie mit Abstand am billigsten waren (Gesamtausgaben bis jetzt 3,20 €). Hat jemand Erfahrungen mit der Keimrate der ersteigerten Samen?

erste Erfolge

Etwas später als erwartet, aber immerhin besser als gar nicht, habe ich heute die ersten beiden Samen entdeckt, die mutig eine kleine (ca. 3mm) Wurzel nach unten strecken. Vielleicht ziehen noch welche nach.

dritter Keim

Nachdem ich von den ersten beiden Keimen berichtet habe, habe ich einen dritten gefunden. Man kann diesen Keimen fast beim Wachsen zusehen. Sie haben zwar erst 1 cm lange Wurzeln, aber diese Wurzellänge nahm am ersten Tag um 100% (von ca. 3 mm auf ca. 6 mm) zu. Jetzt erkenne ich auch den Nachteil meines Substrats. Da es sich bei der obersten Schicht um unaufgelockerte Erde handelt, auf der die Samen liegen, haben sie es schwer mit der Wurzel in das Erdreich zu kommen. Ein Keim lag zusätzlich auf einen ca. 1 cm großen Erdbrocken. Nur einer der drei Keime hat den Weg in den Untergrund gleich geschafft. Dieser sieht auch am kräftigsten aus. Bei den anderen hatte ich Mitleid, da ihre Wurzel schon so lang sind wie der Samen dachte ich es wird Zeit, dass sie das Abtauchen schaffen und habe mit Büroklammer und Wasser versucht sie schonmal etwas mit Erde zu bedecken. Ob ich ihnen mehr geholfen oder geschadet habe bleibt abzuwarten. Keimblätter wurden noch nicht ausgebildet.

Wurzeln entwickeln sich prächtig – sonst nichts neues

Auch die zweite Wurzel hat den Weg in’s Erdreich gefunden. Die ehemals weißen Wurzeln sind bereits rot und der erste Keim scheint den Samen langsam sprengen zu wollen. Ob die dritte Wurzel noch auf der Suche nach Halt ist, kann man nicht sagen, aber sie hängt von der Entwicklung den anderen beiden noch hinterher. Nachzügler konnte ich keine feststellen – vorerst scheint es bei drei gekeimten Samen zu bleiben (was recht gut zu sein scheint für Samen von 3…2…1…). Ich hoffe auf baldige Keimung und darauf, dass ich dann wieder Bilder online stellen kann. Momentan dürfte es noch nicht möglich sein erkennbare Bilder mit dem Handy zu machen.


Scheinbar war es nicht so schlecht, wie ich im Glas gestochert habe (wenngleich es fraglich bleibt, ob es gut war) – alle drei Mammutbaumkeime sind nun im Boden verankert und beginnen mit dem Wachsen nach oben. Die Samen hängen alle in der Luft. Der größte Keim schafft es sogar ihn senkrecht nach oben zu strecken und hat eine Größe von ca. 4 cm (doppelt so viel wie die anderen). Die Keimblätter sind bereits sichtbar – ich hoffe, dass sie bald aufgehen, dann kann ich vielleicht wieder ein Photo posten.

Ein neuer Baum und ein weiterer Verlust

Das Bäumchen, an dem ich rumgestochert habe, um das Eindringen der Wurzel in das Erdreich zu erleichtern hat von den drei ursprünglichen als einziger überlebt. Dieser sieht langsam schon ordentlich aus. Die Wurzeln haben aber die wenige Zentimeter hohe Erdschicht noch nicht bis unten durchdrungen. Ein Spätzünder hat auch noch nachgekeimt und es hat sich ein grüner Moosteppich gebildet (angeblich funktioniert das nichtmal zuverlässig, wenn man das absichtlich versucht). Vielleicht bildet sich bald ein zwei-Baum-Miniatur-Wald.

Beim kommentieren habe ich den Ausdruck „http://“ verboten, da ich täglich mehrfach Spam bannen mußte. Ihr könnt vermutlich immernoch eure Homepage angeben wenn ihr das „http://“ am Anfang weglaßt.

Andere Pflanzen

scharf: Paprika ausgesät

Beim Würzen meines Essens habe ich gestern einen Teil der jetzt ein halbes jahr alten Paprikasamen in den Blumentopf einer alten Palme ausgesät. Nun warte ich ab, ob die Pflanzen so anspruchslos sind, dass sie ohne spezielle Pflege wachsen. Wenn nicht, werde ich es später wiederholen. Noch habe ich massig Paprikas.

Paprika gekeimt?

In einen Blumentopf geworfen und sich selbst überlassen scheinen ein paar Paprikasamen gekeimt zu haben. Somit bestätigt sich wohl auch die Annahme, dass sie nicht sehr anspruchsvoll sind.

frisch gekeimter Paprika?

Amaryllis legt los

Wie zu erwarten war ist in dieser knappen Woche noch nicht viel passiert, was meine Pflänzchen angeht. Samen vom einjährigen Silberblatt habe ich ebenfalls in einen Blumentopf geworfen. Immerhin die Amaryllis hat begonnen zu wachsen. Die Blätter sind vielleicht einen Zentimeter länger und ein drittes Blatt zwischen den beiden ist zu erkennen.

Packungsinhalt: Canellia sinensis

Vielleicht sieht auch der eine oder andere von euch mal so eine abgebildete Samenpackung im Geschäft und fragt sich was dort für gut 5 Euro so alles drin ist. Hier gibt’s die Antwort in Form eines Fotos.

Packungsinhalt - Canellia Sinensis


Im Schneesturm Pflanze für’s tropische Aquarium gesammelt

Letzten Sonntag habe ich mir in den Kopf gesetzt trotz Schneematsch und -fall eine Radtour zu machen, um ein paar Fotos vom nahegelegenen See mit verschneiten Bäumen zu machen. Das Ergebnis war wenig beeindruckend:

An diesem Ufer waren aber ein paar schon sehr schlecht aussehende Wasserpflanzen (ähriges Tausendblatt; Myriophyllum spicatum). Mal abwarten, wie es wird.

Einleitung: Wie baue ich eine HiFi-Anlage zur Musik- und Filmwiedergabe auf?

Mittlerweile ist der Schall, welcher elektronisch im Wohnzimer erzeugt wird nicht mehr auf ein oder zwei Lautsprecher beschränkt. Bis zu 9 Lautsprechern (7.2) arbeiten in vielen Zimmern. Mein Receiver ist sicher nicht der teuerste, erlaubt es aber 11 Lautsprecher an zu schließen, 9 davon passiv. Allein die Frage wieviele Lautsprecher ich an meine Anlage anschließen werde, war nicht so einfach zu beantworten.

Zu diesen und anderen Fragen gibt es viele Antworten im Internet. Foren erlauben es gezielt zu fragen und auf das persönliche Problem zugeschnittene Antworten zu erhalten. Auch ich habe diese Möglichkeit intensiv genutzt. Um sich ein wenig Wissen anzueignen sind sie sehr gut geeignet, doch haben sie auch Nachteile. So sind Erfahrungsberichte durchweg positiv bis euphorisch. Natürlich hat sich der Benutzer die Hardware gekauft, weil sie in seinen Ohren gut klingt. Große Enttäuschungen sind hier selten. Kaufberatungen sind aus zwei Gründen schwierig: zum einen sind die Ansprüche sehr unterschiedlich und „guter“ Klang ist objektiv. Zum anderen wird meist eine Preisobergrenze verlangt. Die Beratung scheint dann meist dahin zu gehen dieses Budget möglichst genau aus zu geben. Oftmals ist dies gar nicht vernünftig, denn je nach räumlichen Gegebenheiten, können auch Lautsprecher für über 1000€ so klingen, wie welche für 100, wenn man sie in Ecken quetschen und eine akustisch ungünstige Hörposition einnehmen muss. Gerade in solchen Situationen ist eine Beratung schwer möglich und man kommt nicht umher sich zu informieren. Dies war auch meine Situation. Da ein Umzug bevor stand hatte ich Zeit für Recherchen bis ich mir meine neue Anlage aufbaute. Selbst dieser Aufbau hat noch ein halbes Jahr gedauert und ist noch nicht komplett abgeschlossen. Meine Erfahrungen möchte ich hier festhalten in der Hoffnung, dass sie den einen oder anderen weiter helfen, bevor dieser sich blind etwas im Internet bestellt oder tagelang von Shop zu Shop fährt um sich Lautsprecher und Verstärker an zu hören.

Mein Problem war recht kompliziert. Ich höre viele CDs, welche gut wiedergegeben werden sollen. Gleichzeitig möchte ich bei Filmen echten Raumklang genießen. Vielleicht sogar bei CDs. Erfahrungen auf dem Gebiet „Surround“ hatte ich keine. Vor vielen Jahren habe ich mir eine recht ordentliche Stereoanlage gekauft, welche vielleicht sogar mein Interesse an diesem Hobby geweckt hat. Seit dem habe ich mich nicht mehr groß mit diesem Gebiet beschäftigt. Eine klangliche Verschlechterung kam nicht in Frage. Was ich suchte war also die eierlegende Wollmichsau. Diese gibt es nicht bekommt man sehr oft zu hören. Aber muss eine Anlage, welche Filme gut wiedergibt automatisch schlecht bei der Musikwiedergabe sein? Mit den nötigen Kompromissen und möglichen Synergien habe ich mich recht intensiv beschäftigt und kann jetzt in den nächsten Wochen meine Erkenntnisse und Umsetzungen hier präsentieren.



Ziel meiner Einstellung ist es natürlich das Schreiben von Kommentaren möglichst wenig zu behindern und gleichzeitig Spam zu verhindern. Dass du diesen Text ließt bedeuted, dass du kein Spambot bist ;). Ich möchte hier nur ein paar Einstellungen aufführen, die ermöglichen Beiträge zu schreiben, die nicht als Spam identifiziert werden. Wird ein Beitrag für Spam gehalten, muss ich ihn freischalten – er erscheint aber nicht sofort, sondern später.

Registrierung zum kommentieren nötig: nein
Jeder Kommentar muss überprüft werden: nein
Der Schreibende muss eine EMailadresse hinterlassen: ja (dient der Identifizierung von Spam)
Der Schreibende muss bereits einen Beitrag verfaßt haben: ja
Der Kommentar kommt auf die Warteliste, wenn er mehr als einen Link enthält

Disclaimer und Copyright: Alle Bilder dürfen nicht ohne Verweis auf diese Seite weiterverwendet werden. Ich distanziere mich von Inhalten, welche ich nicht verfaßt habe (Kommentare und verlinkte Seiten).


Die Textlinktauschangebote im Internet sind sehr unpraktisch: Eine Tauschrate von 1:1 bedeuted in meinem Fall, dass man eine Einblendung bekommt für jeweils vier Werbelinks, die man selbst darstellt. Desweiteren läßt es sich schlecht konfigurieren und wird deshalb schlecht dargestellt.

Deshalb möchte ich eine faire, unkomplizierte Werbung anbieten. Ich stelle wie auch jetzt links sichtbar Werbelinks für andere Seiten dar, wenn der Betreiber dieser Seite gleiches für dieses Blog tut. Ich hoffe im Frühjahr 2008 mit etwas mehr Clicks dienen zu können, wenn ich mit richtigen Inhalten dienen kann. Schreibt einfach einen Kommentar mit Verweis auf eure Homepage oder eurer EMailadresse (z.B. in der Form Name-at-Domain-de), wenn ihr Interesse habt.


Sollte jemand mit mir in Kontakt treten wollen, so kann er entweder einen Kommentar schreiben oder mir eine EMail an folgende Adresse senden: mha.v at gmx de (at ersetzen, Leerzeichen entfernen und den Punkt nach gmx einfügen 😉 – leider ist es nicht so leicht sich vor Spam zu schützen…)

1 Monat – 100 Besucher

Der erste Monat (und fünf Tage) dieses Blogs ist vorbei. Nachdem zu Beginn sehr wenig los war (bevor die Seite bei den Suchmaschinen eingetragen war) und es wenig zu berichten gab, kam es doch noch etwas in Schwung. Laut Blogstatistik, welche genauer sein sollte als der Counter (zählt meine Besuche nicht mit) habe ich 100 Besucher gehabt (der andere Counter zählt noch 83) – und da ist keiner dabei, den ich kannte, denn Freunde wissen von meinem Blog noch nichts. Da meine Bäumchen langsam loslegen gibt es jetzt wohl erstmal mehr Beiträge.

Bisher bester Tag: 5.1.2008 mit 11 Besuchern

Besucherstatistik 2008

Seit Mitte Dezember 2007 ist dieses Blog erreichbar. Ursprünglich eingerichtet um die Fort- und Rückschritte beim Versuch Mammutbäume aus Samen zu ziehen zu dokumentieren, gibt es nach dem Eingang selbiger ein paar neue Rubriken. Insgesamt wurden bis zum Jahreswechsel 30 Beiträge von 1554 Besuchern gelesen. Leider schafft der Counter rechts unten nicht alle Besucher zu registrieren.


A new year started and at 1.1.2014 we hit the 6.000 view mark. Yippie!

Civilization: Beyond Earth vs. Civ 5

Civilization: Beyond Eath

The newest version of Sid Meier’s most famous game just hit the markets. In Civilization: Beyond Earth we are now settling in space. Despite this what are the differences to Civ 5 especially including the add-ons Gods and Kings and Brave New World. Which one should you buy?

What’s new?

Starting the game is already different. You can choose different sponsors, settlers, spaceships and cargos (see the linked post for viewing their benefits). This allows you to do more finetuning of the benefits of your fractions. Before you could chose between 34 civilizations, now you have  multiple small choices. This offers the opportunity to do some finetuning of the bonuses. Do you want to fully optimize my colony on growth, or do I want to spice it up with a bit of health or production? You have the choice. On the other hand the bonuses are not so dramatical. Two more ressources, one additional worker, warrior or technology – it provides a boost at the beginning but is no gamechanger like e.g. Venice in Civ 5. This forbids you found new cities and offers twice the amount of traderoutes. Here I don’t see a clear benefit for one of the games (+C:BE, +Civ5).

Next comes choosing a first colony, production and tech. You now don’t have a settler anymore, but see a small area of the map and place you colony. You don’t need (and are not allowed to) waste turns by searching for the best spot (+C:BE – Civilization:Beyond Earth here is better than Civ5). Productionwise everything is similiar but a bit different. You will recognize that you are in space now, but many things will be similiar. Considering the technology Firaxis went from a techtree to a techweb. Now you can not only decide on which branch you want to focus, but also whether you want to go fast in a very specific direction or be very broad. The degree of freedom is now much bigger. The drawback is that the technologies will be more unknown than previously. It’s easy to guess what astronomy, religion or knighthood does. Now you’ll have to do a lot of reading before you specialize to be sure not to miss a crucial tech. Still in the long run I give here the point to Beyond Earth (+C:BE).

One change which was very important to the developers is the alien wildlife. Aliens are not barbarians! (quote Firaxis) Now you have to decide whether to avoid, kill or use(!) the aliens. Again, Civilization: Beyond Earth improved a bit the previous games (+C:BE).

The former policies of Civ 5 now also changed. And now you can also go broad instead of finishing one branch after another. (+C:BE)

Finally at some point you should think about winning the game. You still can destroy every oponent and celebrate you domination victory. The other victory conditions changed and depend one you chosen affection. Here I don’t see a clear winner.

What is missing

Civ 5 has seen a few addons Civilization: Beyond Earth hasn’t seen yet. They offered very strong features. Gods and Kings introduced religion. This gives so much depth and early game choices to the game, that it is clearly missing in Beyond Earth (+Civ5). Brave New World introduced archeology, tourism and bigger interactions with City States. I’m still not sure, whether tourism is a big benefit for the game and how important archeology is, but the city states are big fun (+Civ5). Another thing the addons brought are new civilizations and scenarios. And especially the civs with very significant bonuses and drawbacks. The ones which imho are the most fun.

Pros and Cons:

Pro Civilization:Beyond Earth

  • placing of the first settlement
  • techweb
  • finetuning of the colony when setting up the game
  • aliens are not barbarians
  • new policy structure

Pro: Civilization 5 (+addons)

  • civilizations with very strong bonuses and drawbacks
  • religion
  • city states


Despite Civilization: beyond Earth having more points, the ones of Civ5 seem stronger to me. Civilization: Beyond Earth improved what they touched, but as always Firaxis left things out of the game to come with the addons. Some things like city states are a perfect match for future addons. Imagine the Fremen sieges of dune. Other things seem more difficult to implement. Right now I still prefer Civ 5. It is so well streamlined and so fun to also play without domination victory. This Civilization: Beyond Earth has to achieve in two addons time. And then it will take the crown.

Civilization: Beyond Earth 90 Minutes Let’s Plays

Civilization: Beyond Earth will soon be published. Now some Let’s Players were invited to the Firaxis headquarters and brought back some nice footage, which shows us nice gameplay. Since they were only allowed to play the first 100 turns, still many things stay unclear. We still get an insight in the quests, the aliens, technologies and the mechanics. It’s nice to watch them and get a feeling of what’s nice and what not so. You’ll find the videos at the end of this text. I watched them and try to write a summary for you here.

What we see

Obviously all let’s plays here have to start in the beginning. So we get a clear picture on the different fractions and buffs from the starting choices.

Starting choices

Fractions in Civilization: Beyond Earth

ARC (Covert Operations are 25% faster, +25% on intrigue)

Pan Asian Cooperative (+10% production towards wonders and +25% working speed)

Franco-Iberia (free technology for every 10 virtue points)

Slavic Federation (Orbital Units stay in orbit 20% longer and the first one launched grants a free technology)

Polystralia (Cities can support one more trade route each)

Kevithian Protectorate (Outposts convert into cities 50% faster)

Brasilia (units have +10% Defense in Melee combat)

African Union (+10% food in every growing city when healthy)


Scientists (+2 Science in every city)

Refugees (+2 Food in every city)

Aristocrates (+3 Health and +1 Energy in every ciy)

Engineers (+2 Production in every city)

Artists (+2 culture and +1 health in every city)


Continental Survey (Reveals the coastlines on the map)

Retrograde Thrusters (Wider Area to chose for the first settlement)

Tectonic Scanner (shows Petroleum, Geothermal and Titanium ressources)

Fusion Reactor (Begin with +100 energy)

Lifeform Sensor (reveal Aliens on the map)


Hydroponics (Begin with 1 extra population)

Laboratory (Begin with pioneering technology)

Raw materials (Begin with a clinic in the first city)

Weapon arsenal (Begin with a soldier unit)

Machinery (Begin with a worker unit)


Civilization: Beyond Earth has streamlined some minor things and introduced some big changes. The first thing we see is the foundation of our capital. The position we can choose out of a certain area. No more thoughts whether to move the settler and loose a turn or take only the second best spot.

Also not all civilizations start at the same time. You start first! Other civilizations drop down one by one and reveal their position to you. If they are not cheating, they AI must be pretty to good to avoid a rush strategy to take them out immediately.

A big change is in the wildlife. Firaxis never gets tired of mentioning that the aliens of Civilization: beyond Earth are not like the barbarians in Civ 5. They are not necessary aggressive, if you aren’t towards them. They can also be a ressource for knowledge later on, probably tamed and send against your enemies. I hope they still can also capture cities and be an independent force. Even more since no city states were present and probably are a bit difficult to implement into this setting.

The next big change in Civilization: Beyond Earth is the techweb. It is no longer necessary to develop most of the early technologies to reach the advanced ones. They are no longer arranged in a line, but in a web. So one can very fast go very deep into one of the branches, ignoring most of the early technologies. This gives great freedom and will probably require a few runs or some time reading the different technologies to have a good research strategy. Since most technologies can be reached much faster this will also show how good work Firaxis did with the balancing. Overpowered technologies can again be exploited to win the game easily.

Civilization: Beyond Earth Lets Play Videos

Full playlist

Northernlion (80 Turns, African Union, Refugees, Fusion Reactor, Laboratory, one ocean – one continent)

The Solar Gamer (ARC, Continental Surveyor, Weapon Arsenal, few large landmasse and small islands)

Part 1:

Part 2:

Civilization: Beyond Earth will be released on Friday October 24th 2014
Developers‘ homepage.

If you find this helpful, please comment and share. Thank you very much.

Billbergia nutans (Zimmerhanf) blüht

Vor kurzem habe ich geschrieben, dass ich es geschafft habe ein paar Pflanzen vom unkaputtbaren Billbergia nutans eingehen zu lassen. Nun rächt sich der Geselle und blüht. Von der Knospe habe ich schon vor langer Zeit Bilder gemacht. Nun gibt’s auch eins von der Blühte.

blühenden Billbergia nutans (Zimmerhanf)
blühender Billbergia nutans (Zimmerhanf)

Wie bringe ich Billbergia Nutans zum blühen?

Es ist nicht einfach hier Tipps zu geben. Zimmerhanf blüht wann er will. Mal im Sommer, mal im Winter. Nach langem Trockenzeiten oder einfach so. Das einzige, was er wohl nicht mag ist extrem viel Wasser. Um ihn damit zu töten bedarf es schon etwas besonderem Geschick. Was sicherlich hilft ist ein großer Topf mit vielen Pflanzen. Bei mir blühen immer nur ein oder zwei Pflanzen, obwohl ich sehr viele habe. Manchmal gleich darauf die nächste, manchmal nicht. Also offensichtlich spielt auch hier der Zufall ein große Rolle. Mit anderen Worten: mit doppelt so vielen Pflanzen hat man eine fast doppelt so große Chance auf Erfolg. Wenn es trotzdem nicht klappt empfehle ich eine kurze Trockenphase. Bei mir ist das immer der Fall wenn ich in Urlaub fahre oder sonst viel zu tun habe. Das angenehme ist, dass solche Trockenphasen automatisch auftreten, wenn man sich nicht immer um die Pflanze kümmert. Also einfach keine Sorgen machen und sich einem Monat nach dem Urlaub an den Blühten erfreuen.

Billbergia Nutans in den neuen Medien

Diese Pflanze ist seit langem beliebt bei Hobbygärtnern und Menschen mit schwarzem Daumen. Man hat das Gefühl, dass sie ein Bestandteil jeder zweiten Wohnung ist. Entsprechend erwartete ich auch eine Präsenz in den neuen Medien. Fotos der Blühte gibt es noch viele. Videos findet man selten. Ich wollte ein schönes für diesen Beitrag suchen, habe aber keines gefunden. Auf Youtube gibt es kaum eines mit mehr als 1000 Views und wenn dann ist es auf Spanisch. Ich hätte gerne eines verlinkt, was den Zimmerhanf in seiner natürlich Umgebung zeigt. Vermutlich habe ich es auch geschafft. Und es macht noch nicht mal etwas, dass das Video auf spanisch ist, denn niemand spricht. Wenn ihr ein schöneres Video habt, dann schreibt mir bitte. ich würde ja versuchen eines zu machen, aber bis jetzt habe ich noch keine Idee, wie man ein Video von Pflanzen macht. dass nicht langweilig ist.

a video for Matt Granger’s photocompetition

Last time I was not so succesfull with my participation at Matt Granger’s (ThatNikonGuy) photocompetition. But it’s always fun to participate. So I do it again. This time actually is a bit different. I started making timelapses, which despite usually done by photographers are videos. It’s really a lot of work. So despite haven taken the standard red blossom and red chili amongst many green on the plant I wanted to upload my timelapses. This took me several hours to get them this far. I wonder a bit why no one submits videos. I checked, they are allowed. So now I’m really curious about the feedback. You can see the video here:

The last one got 505 view, 1 like, 0 comments. Let’s see how this one does.

If you want to see the other participants in Matt Granger’s photocompetition for august, just click here.

And here a preview picture of the video:

A screenshot from my video participation to Matt Granger's photocompetetion in august 2014.
A screenshot from my video participation to Matt Granger’s photocompetetion in august 2014.

almost 50 days to germinate: stone old marigold

If looking at the seed packets I bought, germination times are usually 1-3 weeks. The first ones are often a bit faster. Now I found seeds that are the opposite. From the marigold (calendula officinalia) seeds I put out end of april one (!) was germinating one week ago. It was a huge bunch of seeds, when I put all my leftovers in the soil. Obviously not much living there and even the only one who survived took quite a while to come out. I didn’t expect that it’s possible to germinate so slow. Maybe there’s a state between alive and dead for seeds also – not only for Schrödinger’s cat.