an informative yet recondite post

Greetings and salutations, everyone; yes, once again it is I, Mani the not-standardly huge purebred border collie, filling in for the guy I live with, and here to bring you some very interesting, if a bit recondite, news. You may remember me from such interesting posts as “The Upended Breakfast”, among so many, many others.

Here I am in a characteristically horticultural pose. The guy I live with says I should add “goofy”. 15092504That picture, the one above I mean, was taken in the “way back”, where it’s super dry, even with the bit of watering that’s been done. This was taken just as the sun was going down.

Here’s another one. This is me inspecting some native grasses. The Employees Only section is behind me, and to the left.15092505The guy I live painted today. It was his seventh wedding anniversary without the lady of the house to celebrate it, and so he moped a little, and decided to paint the wooden stakes that maybe you’ve seen pictures of. 15092506See how you really notice the unpainted one? He said that anyway. True, you see the green ones, but in the sun, which this isn’t, really, you notice the unpainted ones. When he was a kid, his grandfather had him paint stuff, like sticks, and always green. Even though Henry Mitchell said that black was the best color, the guy I live with paints things green now. When he gets around to it.

Oh, that’s the cowpen daisy, Verbesina encelioides, on the right. It was really tall, and then fell over.

Here I am standing at the end, or maybe the beginning, of “Pooka’s Shortcut”. Pooka was a purebred border collie, also with radar ears, who live here quite a while ago, and instead of going all the way around the raised bed on the right, he decided a shortcut was in order, and so now there is one. This part of the garden is super dry too. 15092507On my walk this evening, I saw these. They were pretty scary. The guy I live with said they were glider type things with propellers on the back. It made me wish I had a propeller. But they were still scary.15092508I did quite a bit of this today, while the guy I live with was painting.15092501Okay, you’re probably wondering about the recondite stuff. I bet you thought I’d forgotten about it. I must tell you that this is pretty arcane indeed.

You know how there are autumn- and spring-flowering crocuses, colchicums, cyclamen, and even narcissus? Well, it turns out that there are autumn-flowering snowdrops too, and aside from species like Galanthus reginae-olgae and G. peshmenii, there are autumn-flowering forms of G. elwesii too.

Some came in the mail today, and they didn’t get planted in the ground. That’s them in the pots there. 15092502Well, what he said was that these snowdrops could start flowering in the next couple of months, but that they need roots first. You can see how dry it’s been here, so if the bulbs are planted now, they’d need to be watered a lot in order to grow roots before flowering, and in much heavier soil which would need a zillion times more water to penetrate to root depth, and so instead, they’re being grown in the pots, and watered a lot, so that the bulbs can grow roots, and can then be planted, roots and all, into the ground. It shouldn’t take them too long to make roots.

These little snowdrops go by the name of Galanthus elwesii var. monostictus Hiemalis Group. (Hiemalis is Latin for winter.) The last purebred border collie who lived here before me, Chess by name, posted a picture of one last November, in the post “Freezing Again”.

Two of the pots hold bulbs called Galanthus elwesii var. monostictus Hiemalis Group ex Highdown.  Of course there isn’t enough room on the labels to write all this. The “Highdown” refers to the garden of the late Sir Frederick Stern, which you would know if you’d read Three Gardens by Graham Stuart Thomas, which you ought to, according to the guy I live with.

He says that then you also might want to have a boiled egg and toast with marmalade in the garden, and wonder what “the excellent packeted parsley sauce” is, which I certainly do. I’m not so sure about marmalade though. The book is still quite delightful, he says.

So that’s it. Lots of pictures of me, and some recondite gardening stuff. I have one more picture of me to show you, heading out into the garden about an hour before sunset. You can see how green things look when the sun is right.15092503

Until next time, then.


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7 Responses to an informative yet recondite post

  1. Kreng Jai says:

    enjoy your weekend Mani with the Guy!

  2. Barb K says:

    My education continues. This time it’s vocabulary which of course can always be improved. How nice to have something blooming in November but it looks like you’d really have to keep watch what with the leaves all over. That last shot looks like the garden in springtime. I think the sun through leaves is almost my favorite thing about gardening. A lot of people don’t even notice. Another nice thing is the sun gleaming on a dog’s shiny coat, right?

  3. Three Gardens by Graham Stuart Thomas is a book I bought at the urging of the guy you live with, Mani. Quite enjoyed it too, and I always have a happiness surge when I spot it on the bookshelf. A delightful book, quite marmalade for the soul. Speaking of souls, your guy has quite the intellectual approach to gardening. I’ll now have to consider root growth instead of just shoving pot contents into a hole. Thoughtfulness must pay off as the garden looks lovely, at this time of year too. I consider border collies as many things, but never as especially elegant. But you, Mani, are an elegant border collie, asleep or awake.

    • paridevita says:

      Thanks; I guess I would have to agree about the elegance. Roots are important. The guy I live with suggests getting G.S.T.’s Cuttings from my Garden Notebook, and reading the chapter on A.T. Johnson (as in Geranium ‘Johnson’s Blue’) and see if the last couple of paragraphs don’t cause a tear to be shed.

  4. NancyKay says:

    your mention of Chess brought a lump to my throat…

    • paridevita says:

      Yes, well, it kind of does here, too.
      The guy I live with says I’m going to be a worthy successor, which is a nice compliment, though he also said he doesn’t remember Chess being a velociraptor in a puppy suit…..

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