Sunday, October 21, 2012

Dracunculus Vulgaris, My Holy Grail?
Dracunculus Vulgaris

I recently decided to begin fiddling with twitter and am reveling in my popularity. In virtually no time -- just a few weeks--I have ten followers. Some might say eight, since the list includes my daughter and my sister who charitably plonked my twitter follow button, which will probably be the end of their involvement with my communications.

I can't blame them, since I have myself been adamant about this form of social networking being a complete waste of time, a bunch of fools stroking each other while talking to themselves, a pyramid scheme of sorts - I read, in some internet instruction that if you just follow a bunch of twits, likely they'll have some mechanism set up to automatically follow you back and you'll quickly build a following!

Of people that are talking to themselves. 

That is the way I felt about twitter until approximately 20 minutes ago when -- while searching for something worthwhile to retweet to my ten (or eight) followers -- I came across a tweet that led to a retweet that led to Tropical Britain, which unsurprisingly is in Great Britain, and a photograph of  the Dranunculous vulgaris, also known as: Dragon Lily, Dragon Arum, Black Arum, Voodoo Lily, Snake Lily, Stink Lily, Black Dragon, Black Lily, Dragonwort, Ragons, Drakondia, Wake Robin, Dragon's Tongue, and Devil's Tongue.

I gasped in wonderment at its strangeness--thinking I would go to great lengths to posses one. Possibly even moving to the land of drizzle and mutton -- no offense to my British friends.

Saturday, October 20, 2012

Moving On Up -- To the Greenhouse

My tropicals are lined up on the back porch, ready to begin their march through the house and up the stairs and through my little office and out to my littler greenhouse, where me budgies will have their way with the foliage until spring, when what's left of the plants will march in ragged reverse to the garden. 

There's a sprawling jasmine, a couple of hibiscus (hibisci?), the Meyer lemon and the key lime, a kalanchoe,  an African gardenia, a stephanotis, and a standard gardenia that has somehow survived for two years without being infested with something disgusting. There are also many VERY LARGE green things that probably have names, but I forgot them.  

Some, still in their pots, I just dragged up the steps. Others were uprooted and repotted. Yesterday morning's task-- I a vision in pajamas and pink flip flops, a smear of dirt under my nose -- which was pointed out by my Prince, who expressed great pleasure in seeing me sweat for a change.  

Sorry to say that his rubber plant, which I have been trying to kill for 30 years has finally bit the dirt, though he probably won't notice until February, at which time I will confess and there will be a traumatic scene.  His bachelor plant, pfft.  Ugly sucker.

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Cribbed from - A Bloomsbury Life: Have Words, Will Travel

While I fail to be convinced about twitter usefulness, I tripped across this blog posting yesterday and can't get it out of my head. My vocabulary has become so constricted that I resort to invention (shrubbish) when there are plenty of WORDS out there that can be employed -- for gardening and life.

I link it here because I don't want to misplace it. 
"A Bloomsbury Life: Have Words, Will Travel: There are some words so rich in personality and atmosphere they don't need pictures to accompany them. Here are a few. Aperitif..."

Would you work on a list with me that conjures pictures (should your camera be broken)?

I See a Little Fertilizer in Your Future

Among the many questions I have never been asked is why there is, tangled amid the various beads and other shiny bits, a crystal ball suspended from a rather grimy pink string hanging on the broken lamp that occupies a sizable section of my desk.

It is possibly the most useless piece of gardening equipage in my arsenal of gardening implements.

Equipage, by the way, and since I just double checked Encarta, means:  "the equipment and supplies needed for an undertaking, especially a military expedition."

Which about sums gardening tools, yes?

The crystal is supposed to sense the plant's desires, the which way to settle in the pot or the earth. The do I need water or not.  The hunger for an 8-0-24 or 10-10-10 fertilizer.

Saturday, October 13, 2012

Happy Anniversary Garden

Will the mandevilla give me one lousy flower this year, or not?

I have been observing the above bud for the past week, creeping past last night's dirty dishes (not my job) each morning and tip toeing down the steps into the garden, wincing over the pebble path in my socks, hoping that this single bud has finally opened.

At 7 a.m it was looking a little shriveled, although it appears better in the photo than it has any reason to. An over-caffeinated hand was at hand, giving it a facelift. Like a Vaselined lens focused on a wrinkled face.

It was chilly last night, parts of Washington were frosted, they say.  Capitol Hill, however, has a micro-climate that keeps the freeze at bay sometimes for a week or a month longer than elsewhere.

Perhaps it's our hot air.

Monday, October 8, 2012

The U.S. Botanic (Potted) Garden

The Botanic Garden at the foot of the Capitol has not thrilled me much this year. There's been entirely too much restraint on display.

Thankfully, a more extravagent hand is now at play.  For this I am grateful.

An ex-friend and I once had a dispute, well we had more than one which is why she's now an ex-friend.

While I have no issue with disagreement in general -- a little disagreement can aid in the creation of thought balloons which contain symbols such as ? and ! and ?! As well as the strings of letters and symbols that we substitute for expletives.  I do however mind when said disagreement is entirely disagreeable, which is what  the final disagreement was, which I will not get into.

The following was minor as such things go:

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