Greetings and salutations everyone; yes, once again it is I. Chess the purebred border collie, here to bring you the latest news from our garden. You may remember me from such cutting-edge and delightful posts as “Of Seeds And Soil” and “No Pizza For Me”, among so many, many others.
Here I am in a characteristic pose.Speaking of cutting edge, the guy I live with clipped my toenails today, but carefully, so I didn’t bleed all over everything like last time. He says they still need to be clipped way back but he’s not going to try that. Whew, huh.
It was really nice on Monday, then an icy wind blew in from the north, and it was, according to the guy I live with, “cold, humid, and horrible” yesterday, with a little bit of snow. I thought the weather was just fine and didn’t know what he was complaining about, as usual. I don’t know what most of the stuff he complains about has to do with anything real, but I pretend nothing is happening. Which, technically, is true.
The guy I live with spent quite some time “mouseproofing”, since it was obvious that none of the places he’d “mouseproofed” before had much of anything to do with keeping mice from getting into the house. This morning I was sitting on the kitchen floor, just like in my picture above, and a mouse ran right past me. It was totally shocking.
The most disconcerting thing about all of this is that the guy I live with has this look on his face, like the look of a person thinking about getting a cat. I don’t like that look. He knows we can’t have a cat with the back door open all the time, so I think he just has that might get a cat look on his face to scare the mice. I certainly hope so.
There are seeds germinating on the shelves I showed a while back. Just in case you thought the guy I live with didn’t know what he was doing, putting pots full of seeds out on the back patio when it was freezing cold. This is Asyneuma compacta. An alpine plant from Turkey, related to campanulas. So that’s the big excitement there. It only took a few weeks, and up came the seedlings.
There’s also big news on the hellebore front. They’re showing buds. The guy I live with said this was “awfully late”, but I pretended not to hear him. Yes, it’s true, some winters we see hellebores in flower in February, but then usually they get, oh, you know, nipped in the bud by cold, and then he complains, and then the main flush appears in March, just like always. All his complaining doesn’t help the plants grow any.
As I said, it snowed yesterday, and when we went on my morning walk, we could see that rabbits had been hopping all over the front sidewalk. It looked kind of funny. The snow is all gone now.I know the guy I live with took pictures of the rabbit who spent a lot of time in our back yard, but there isn’t a rabbit here any more. I won’t say why. Something bad happened, and that’s all I’ll say.
Well, anyway, the guy I live with was all irked because some of the newly planted Arizona cypresses got really badly toasted over the winter, and he spent a whole lot of time looking for useful information on the internet. He couldn’t find any, which might be a surprise to some people, so what he decided to do was try to warm up the air around the damaged cypress in order to try to encourage bud break. I think this is just plain weird, but, you know, whatever.
There’s a cypress in there. “In its own personal greenhouse”. Uh huh. Let’s see, what else? Oh, he’s all excited because the reticulate irises are coming up. “They’ll probably all get frozen, so we get excited now”, is how he explained it to me. This is Iris hyrcana. He says it comes from the Greek name for the land on the south shore of the Caspian Sea, in present-day Iran. That’s mostly subtropical, but the Elburz Mountains just to the south are really super high, and there are forests, called the Hyrcanian Forest, that’s sort of where the iris comes from. He says it sounds like there might be centaurs there, hunting wolves, which is where the word Hyrcana comes from. I don’t think wolves need to be hunted, though they’re scary, but then I bet so are centaurs. Or maybe it comes from the Talysh Mountains, which aren’t as high. The guy I live with has never been to Iran, let alone the Hyrcanian Forest, let alone never seen a centaur, so, well, I just don’t know.And that’s the news for today. I guess I’ll go now. I’ll leave you with a picture of me in my fort, looking all nonchalant and everything.
Until next time, then.