just another post

Greetings and salutations, everyone; yes, once again it is I, your popular host, Mani the purebred border collie, here today to provide just another post. The guy I live with said why not, and I agreed. You may remember me from such posts as “The Ghost In The Grapevine”, among so many, many others.

Here I am in a characteristic pose. It’s been so dry here, it’s dry. The guy I live with has been watering, some, but it doesn’t seem to help all that much. Maybe it does and he’s just being negative. You might be surprised to know that he can be negative. Sometimes he is.
You can see here how dry it is; this is me (if you didn’t know) on my walk. I’m looking at something. The other day it was kind of drizzly, which is like totally weird for here. He said there used to be drizzle, and mist, sometimes, but not any more.
I think we got about .000001 inches of water from the drizzle that day.
But the sunsets here have been very nice. This is one of them. I’m actually in this picture but you have to look hard. There are a lot of unhappy plants here right now. This is an agastache. The guy I live with planted them for the hummingbirds but the agastaches wilt every day. And one of his favorite plants, Stachys byzantina ‘Helene von Stein’, or ‘Big Ears’, looks like this:
Well, it did before it got watered. Afterwards it perked up. I guess I would too.
This is a Salvia greggii that the guy I live with dug up from the garden because it wilted every time it got dry (so, a lot), and it turned out that the roots hadn’t left the nursery root ball, so he gave it the “super genius” method for a month or so and the roots grew into the coarse sand you see there, so today it got planted again.Here are a couple of plants of Holodiscus dumosus he got at the plant sale a couple of Fridays ago, and they need to be repotted for a while before the go into the ground. There was a big plant of the holodiscus here, for years, but it died. The guy I live with looked on the Forest Service website and it said there that the shrubs only live for about thirty years, and that seemed about right, so for once he didn’t think he had done something wrong. And then something a bit more interesting, maybe: Hyacinthoides (or Scilla) lingulata emerging. It’s an autumn-flowering bulb from like Algeria which probably isn’t hardy but we grow it anyway. The guy I live with said it’s kind of cool to think of autumn-flowering bulbs from North Africa. There are a few species of cyclamen from places like Algeria, Tunisia, and Libya, that flower in the autumn, but they’re not hardy here. (There’s also a cyclamen from Somalia.) There were more bulbs but he dug them all up so he could share some.

Several days ago the guy I live with went out to the “trough patio” to go through the seed pots there. Not too many had survived the hail of last year combined with the total neglect they got this summer, but there were some seedlings left. All penstemons. He said he might not grow anything from seed again, except maybe for grasses and wildflowers, but when he says stuff like that I always think he’s just saying things.

Speaking of cyclamen, they’re starting to flower too. Mostly Cyclamen cilicium. Maybe you can’t see them in the picture here but there are some. Colchicums too. Oh, that conifer, the little limber pine with two trunks, is growing in one of the troughs. That came from Jerry Morris, with no name. The very blue, even though the camera makes it look super blue, dwarf blue spruce, also came from Jerry, and had a tag that said ‘Blue Beaut’. Just to the right of this is the locust tree, which is going to have to be cut down this winter. It’s being killed by “borers” or something like that. About half the branches are dead. Aside from the expense, the guy I live with is kind of indifferent about this. The tree was here when he and his wife moved in, but he always thought the pods were a nuisance. I like the tree because squirrels like it, and they’re fun to bark at. Oh well.
If you go back to the picture of the cyclamen you can’t see, maybe you can see the condition of the fence on the left. Squirrels have chewed it to shreds. Maybe you don’t think of squirrels as fence-destroying chewing things, but they are.

I have a couple of pictures of the garden here. The “lawn”, really. At least this one is.This is the “rain garden”.  You can see the spindle tree, Euonymus europaea, is totally wilted. It’s actually behind the rain garden.  Bluish Quercus grisea on the left. The iron owl came from his mom’s yard. I guess that’s it. There was probably something major that I was supposed to say, but I can’t think what it was, and the guy I live with has no clue at all. As usual. 


Until next time, then.





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27 Responses to just another post

  1. I have been going through my seed pots here in the UK as well. Most didn’t germinate and after four years I don’t think they will now. I find seeds of bulbs are more likely to germinate but only the spring flowering ones

    • paridevita says:

      The guy I live with says that penstemons etc. are easy just left outside here, but last year there were the two hailstorms that smashed a lot of the plastic pots. Even one of the B.E.F. Grower’s Pots, which have been outside for thirty years, was shattered. This summer, with the 90 plus degree heat, and the hot flashes, and the constant overpowering laundry and disinfectant smell from next door, almost no work at all was done in the garden. Maybe an hour every few days. And it’s been so frightfully dry here. Only yesterday, when it was cooler, the guy I live with said he would brave the smell to get some work done. But the hormone blocker therapy has made him pretty weak so when he emptied one of the troughs and then lifted it onto a dolly, I was afraid he would pass out or die. He didn’t.

  2. Mark E. Mazer says:

    If it is black locust, save the wood for stakes. In old timey New England, they made fenceposts out of it; said to last 100 years. We had some in CT that were in the ground for 30 years with no rot in the heartwood. Nasty should one get a splinter though, and tough to work with. Makes a high BTU firewood.

  3. Mee-yow wow yore gardensa look so kewl inn a desert sorta way Mani!! THE Blue Spruce iss lovelee. LadyMew told mee there was a 30 foot high Blue spruce out front of here bee-fore mee time. Mee wuud LOVE to have a tree fore shade inn Summer time…..
    Poor Locust Tree getting eaten bye THE ‘Borerss’…wee have sum sort of Beetle that boress here too…they sure can bee ucky! An Squirrelss here are furry dee-structive too.
    Yore lookin mitey hansum inn yore photoess mee frend…happy trailss till you an yore ‘guy’ post again!
    ***purrsss*** BellaDharma

    • paridevita says:

      Thanks. I have to say I don’t mind the idea of cooler weather; the guy I live with is kind of indifferent to it but he says some rain would be excellent. Just as long as the soil doesn’t freeze like it did last year. It will be weird not to have the locust tree here but the guy I live with said we might get an apple tree to replace it. The honey locust is not exactly a desert tree, and apples come from pretty cold and dry places.

  4. tonytomeo says:

    It was supposed to get so dry (minimal humidity) and warm and windy here that all the power was shut off. It was not all that warm. Nor was it all that windy. In fact, it was muggy enough do leave copious dew in the morning. Nonetheless, we were without electricity for a while.

  5. Really don’t believe your guy you live with, Mani, can be too negative if he is growing an autumn-flowering bulb from Algeria “which probably isn’t hardy.” It does seem true he isn’t overwhelmingly positive. Despite reports, I find your garden lovely, as these photographs show, although the wilting plants need to Perk Up. How do squirrels feel about apples? Munchable? This post proves, dear dog, that in addition to your general excellence, fierceness and characteristic posing qualities, you also possess a great quantity of patience.

    • paridevita says:

      Thanks. The hyacinthoides, which used to be a scilla, I think, comes inside when it gets cold. It overwinters with the cyclamen, which are hardy, but just haven’t been planted yet. (Next spring for them.) We have an apple tree, and squirrels get every single one. They bite into them and then let them fall to the ground. Things are different, today, after the snow.

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