High Heat Field Tests

The thermometer on the Porta Hedge reached 115 degrees Fahrenheit yesterday, the highest to date. Despite one exploding bolt, the Hedge has held up as well in the high heat of the Southwest as in the rainy cold of the Northeast. Unlike their artificial container, not all of the living plants on the inside have adapted as well to the extreme shifts in temperature and exposure to sunlight. Here are some of the results – none of which seems to vary from the publicly available plant care information on the internet:

Boston Fern
As documented elsewhere, we found that the Boston Ferns do not like intense heat and direct desert sunlight. Where not shaded by the solar panels, burned leaves turn brown and die.

Distressed Boston Fern
Distressed Boston Fern

Spider Plant
The spider plants have proven the most resilient so far and are growing happily when given moderate shade.

Spider Plant Thrives
Spider Plant Thrives

Christmas Cactus
Don’t let the name fool you, this plant is not a true cactus. This plant does not like extreme heat or sunlight and it is uncertain whether the cacti in the Hedge will survive the trip. However, with shade cloth protecting the plant from intense direct sunlight, it might grow well in the Porta Hedge.

Christmas Cactus Near Death
Christmas Cactus Near Death

Golden Pothos
This plant is doing well except where exposed to intense direct sunlight, which yellows the leaves. With the addition of shade cloth where the solar panels do not provide shade, the Golden Pothos should continue to thrive in the Porta Hedge.

Golden Pothos Needs A Little Shade
Golden Pothos Needs A Little Shade

Philodendron
Even in moderate direct sunlight, this plant showed fatigue. Brown withering leaves are the result of direct sunlight. As with the other houseplants, more shade is required.

Philodendron Leaves Tomorrow
Philodendron Leaves Tomorrow

Porta Hedge Land Speed Record

On Wednesday, July 22, 2009 the Porta Hedge made three consecutive land speed records at the BONNEVILLE SPEEDWAY. Although we did not approach the 622.407 mph record set by GARY GABELICH in 1970, we were satisfied with the results. We were also pleased with how well the Porta Hedge thrived in the plantless salt plains, but we can’t claim to be the first to put artificial trees out in the Utah desert

Watch the video to see how we did in our land speed trials.

Night Visitors

After impromptu artist talk “Waffle Shop meets Porta Hedge” by JON RUBIN and myself at MACHINE PROJECT yesterday evening, the audience poured outside to visit the Hedge in person before we got back on the road on our way to Las Vegas. Feedback from the audience was that the Hedge was inconspicuous in the urban setting.

Night Visitors at Machine Project
Night Visitors at Machine Project
It's Hard to See Much From Inside at Night
It's Hard to See Much From Inside at Night

Los Angeles Afternoon Follow-up

I’ve been positioned inside of the Porta Hedge since early this morning, observing the area and leaving periodically to feed the parking meter so as to avoid getting towed. It has finally started to cool down here, but the heat has taken it’s toll!

Tonight at 8:00 PM I will give an artist’s talk on the Porta Hedge project at MACHINE PROJECT, 1200D Alvarado Street, Los Angeles – if you’re in the area please stop by.

View of Porta Hedge from Inside Machine Project
View of Porta Hedge from Inside Machine Project
Porta Hedge Creates Some Privacy Outside
Porta Hedge Creates Some Privacy Outside

Porta Hedge Park-in

We experienced a delay in our departure from Palo Alto this morning due to last night’s positioning of the Porta Hedge on the street. This gave us the opportunity to conduct the Manual Relocation Field Test. The result – three guys can successfully drag around the hedge by hand. We held up traffic for a bit, but eventually got the Hedge on the truck in the middle of the street and made our way out of the Bay Area onto Interstate 5 South to Los Angeles.

Porta Hedge Park-in
Porta Hedge Park-in

Cross Continental Milestone

Despite our recent vehicular setbacks, yesterday evening the Porta Hedge rolled into downtown San Francisco, thereby reaching an important milestone: a successful transamerican voyage. Many plants travel farther and faster across continents every day, take for example roses and artificial Christmas trees, so one hedge’s transamerican voyage may at first seem insignificant. But in light of the public’s positive reception to a mobile artificial hedge, it is important to know that one could actually travel the distance when required.

Future purveyors of artificial mobile landscapes should take stock in the successful travels of the Porta Hedge.

What Use is a Drive Shaft?

Just over Donner Pass on I80, the pass named after the ill-fated pioneer emigrant party that found itself snowed in on the east side in 1846, resulting in cannibalism to keep 45 of the 86 members alive, we found our own party stranded. Five hours later with two tow trucks in three days under our belt, the mechanic in Truckee was able to extract the front drive shaft from our towing vehicle and send us on our way. The drive shaft now lives in the back of the car, packed in just below the sleeping bags.

The Suburban Undergoes Surgery
The Suburban Undergoes Surgery
No More Front Drive Shaft
No More Front Drive Shaft