at a distance

Greetings and salutations, everyone; yes, once again it is I, your popular host, Mani the purebred border collie, here today not exactly to talk about what everyone on the planet is talking about, but sort of about that. You may remember me from such posts as “A Misty Day” (which I did when I was really super little), among so many, many others.

Here I am in a characteristic pose. The guy I live with said I have a “ding” on my nose. He said that Chess, the purebred border collie who lived here before me, had a ding too; “with a ding at the end of his nose, his nose, his nose, with a ding at the end of his nose.”
I feel so advanced.

Anyway, we aren’t doing much of anything. The guy I live with’s leg is still swollen, a little, but it doesn’t hurt as much as it did. His knee is a different story altogether.
I couldn’t think of any stories involving knees but the guy I live with reminded me of the “knee plays” in Einstein on the Beach, and that’s sort of the same thing. I asked what they were but he just said they were “a thing”, which is considered a suitable explanation around here.
His knee still hurts. But since the doctor said he might need surgery in a couple of years, the hurting somehow seemed okay after that. Like it was justified or something.

The day he went to the doctor there was a problem with the car starting. He was able to get it started, but he was pretty distracted while at the doctor’s, thinking about being stranded in the parking lot, and yet when he went out to the parking lot after his visit, the car started just fine. “The exact opposite of what would normally happen”, he said.
Then it started time after time the next couple of days, but yesterday it wouldn’t start at all. So he was going to have it towed to get that fixed, as well as the usual check-up (meaning oil change and stuff), but today the car started again.
His neighbor lectured him about going out; he decided she was right, and so he canceled the car appointment. It can be done later.
We’re staying put for a while.

Things are looking okay in the garden, though a lot of clean-up needs to be done. I’m not sure who’s going to do this. The guy I live with said “Elves”, so that will be interesting.

There are some spring-flowering colchicums here; the most common one, Colchicum bulbocodium (also called Bulbocodium vernum) is doing pretty well.These were planted a few years ago; maybe longer ago than that. I do know that several earlier attempts to get the bulbs established failed completely.

Some of the “steppe corydalis” are flowering now. The earliest ones, here, are forms of Corydalis glaucescens.  These are not all that easy to grow. They had plastic labels but they’re all gone now. It wasn’t my fault, this time; it was hail. I only stole labels when I was a puppy.Some of the crocuses are really late, here, because the snow stayed for so long. Crocus tommasinianus is a favorite; this clump appeared in the front yard, with the help of ants.

And I’m going to show this picture of an Iris reticulata which was grown from wild-collected seed, even though it isn’t terribly in focus. The coloring is pretty cool.

And the little narcissus, ‘Julia Jane’. Also not the greatest picture in the world. This has been doing pretty well in its location at the foot of the sand bed (or pile). The first time it was planted, a very long time ago, it flowered for a couple of years and then died.
It gets more water here; maybe that’s the answer.
Of course then the guy I live with wanted to know why regular Narcissus romieuxii (of which is a selection) has never lived here for very long. Maybe all these little narcissus need to grow at the base of the sand bed. That only leaves the cyclamen, and that’s kind of a pun, because the guy I live with fretted about the frozen soil last November, fearing that it would prevent the tubers from hydrating the leaves in the middle of winter. He covered all the cyclamen with a couple of inches of pine needles and other stuff, and, well, you can see the results. There was some white mold, too, but that should go away now that the needles have been raked up.

Crawling along the path looking at the cyclamen was one of the guy I live with’s favorite thing to do in the garden. It seemed like such a calm, quiet thing to do, and reminded him, with a tear or two, of his late friend in New York, who sent him cyclamen from time to time.
Since his wife died, crawling around looking at cyclamen hasn’t been as much fun to do, like many other things (and now crawling is almost completely out of the question), but he shared the cyclamen with his friend, and can look at them in her garden, too.
Most of these are Cyclamen coum, but not the ones in the first two pictures.  Then there are the ones under the park bench. They seem very happy there.I think that about wraps it up for today. I’ll leave you with a picture of me surveying my back yard. You can also see the bat house which I understand is really on the wrong side of the house (his wife built it and put it there), and you can see me.

Until next time, then.




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laid up

Greetings and salutations, everyone; yes, once again it is I, your popular host, Mani the purebred border collie, here today to bring you up to date on all the happenings around here. You may remember me from such posts as “Biscuit Time”, among so many, many others.

Here I am in a characteristic pose.You can see that the snow is almost gone. It’s been here like forever. We are not used to having snow on the ground for so very long.

Because of all the snow, and especially ice, the guy I live with did something to his leg, and so he’s been laid up for quite a while now. He went to the doctor one day, and then to have ultrasound and an x-ray another day, and what it is is a ruptured Baker’s cyst. Behind the knee. He felt it snap on one of our walks.
If it sounds painful, well, it is. He’s been using a cane to walk, and lying in bed a lot, with an ice bag on his swollen leg. He’s very good at lying in bed, and so, as it turns out, am I.

Meanwhile, the weather has been very nice, that is to say “normal”, for once. In the mid-sixties, Fahrenheit. (Say about 17C.)
And there are now snowdrops.

A bunch are escaping into the front yard, too. The guy I live with says they might find more freedom to spread, there.This is one of the Greatorex doubles, called ‘Cordelia’.Well that’s pretty much it. There are some crocuses in flower, too, so the only complaining I hear is about the leg. I haven’t been able to go on my walks, though, but the leg should get better eventually. 

Until next time, then.

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