I have a new friend under the fig tree, Sweet Betsy, Trillium cuneatum.
It was sent to me by a fellow blogger, Marian St. Claire of Hortitopia.
I am happy to report that is blooming and spreading.
I learned about this plant at a writer’s workshop
when the two women at my table learned I was a garden blogger,
they both said their favorite flower was ‘Sweet Betsy’.
I was embarrassed to confess that I had never heard of Sweet Betsy.
I shared this story with Marian. She kindly shipped one to me.
That’s how we plant folks are.
I love Sweet Betsy so much I may write a song about her.
I think we love daffodils because they show up just when we need them.
Flashes of yellow appear as winter is loosening its grip on the land.
I welcome the bright yellow blooms as they foreshadow the bright spring sunshine.
I have many types of daffodils in a variety of colors,
but my favorite is and always will be the Tete-a Tete.
It is named for having two flowers on some of its stems.
Some of mine even have three!
This make them look like bouquets in the garden.
I have been watching in amazement as my Clivia ‘Good Hope’ flowers for the first time ever.
Its butter-yellow finger-like buds finally opened into big happy blooms this week.
I did not realize that it would get this large.
Even its roots, which slither along the surface, are big.
Another giant houseplant. Hooray!
I use colorful swizzle sticks to mark where I plant bulbs.
I have found that the twisted kind holds up longer and stays up better.
I thought this color combo was rather nice.
The swizzle sticks match the stamen.
Swizzle stick serendipity!
I have been too sickly to go out into the garden this week,
instead I traveled down the Amazon with Margaret Mee and her friend Rita.
I would have been terrified running the rapids in a dugout canoe,
if I had not been safely tucked in my bed while doing it.
Not only is she adventurous, she is also an artist.
Her botanical watercolors are famous for their beauty as well as accuracy.
Margaret Mee gets placed on my hero list with Marianne North and Beatrix Potter.
I was almost glad to be sick, so that I could float and forage through the jungles.
A single stem florescence must maintain balance.
It does this by dancing very slowly around the stem.
Symmetry must be maintained as the flowers bloom.
The round dance is called circumnutation.
I have been watching my Benifica Amaryllis dance this week.
There is an odd number of blooms.
The last one to open is days behind the others and smaller.
I have observed this last bud slowly spinning above its sisters.
It has finally settled down close to the oldest bloom which is beginning to wither.
Taking up the space that is being vacated.
Timing and balance.
We can learn from our green relatives if we pay close attention.
On the coldest, rainiest day last week I could not stand the emptiness any longer.
Yes, I was alone again, but I am not talking about an empty house.
It was all those empty pots.
Their yawning maws were calling me every time I walked by.
I had tried to find the right pansies numerous times in the past month. I need a pretty face you see.
So on this dreary day, I ventured out to yet another location to scrounge for plants.
I stood in the pouring rain and carefully selected each six-pack of pansies (one viola).
When I finally brought my flat to the check-out, I was soaked and dripping.
The check-out person had obviously been watching my pansy picking.
“You must have really needed some pansies today.” she said as she checked me out.
“It was an emergency.” was my reply.
I feel a “Pine Needle Run” coming on next week.
I hope I won’t have to do that in the rain, too.
Creatures let you know when you have screwed up.
The bunnies throw their metal pan if their breakfast is late.
Hummingbirds buzz my head when the feeder is empty.
But this was my first scolding by a bluebird.
It started by his looking in the windows while I was cooking.
He was very vocal as he fluttered around the windows.
At first, I thought he was talking to his reflection.
But he followed me across the front of the house.
He repeatedly flew from the windows to the deck railing and back.
It finally dawned on me that the bluebird house attached to the deck pole just below where he kept landing had fallen apart over the winter.
I found a different house and got out the ladder to pop it up in the old house’s place.
I waited. The scolding continued.
It did not want a new house, it wanted its old orange house.
The one that had fallen apart.
Out came the hammer and nails. The ladder was dragged back out.
Up goes the newly reconstructed old orange house.
Mr. and Mrs. Bluebird are pleased.
I don’t appreciate being bossed around by a bird.
I have a Coffee Tree in my living room. I have petted it for two years now.
It has doubled in size due to careful feeding and watering with “banana water.”
I was excited to see little buds forming at the base of each petiole.
Future blooms for the first time!
My joy quickly turned to consternation when upon closer examination
I discovered scale on several leaves and branches.
Those nasty scale parasites had invaded my precious Coffee Tree.
So out comes the Q-tips and alcohol. For another scale massacre.
The dead bodies were appropriately collected in a coffee cup.
I sang my “Killing Them Softly” song as I murdered the flat sticky foe from leaf and stem.
I am happy to report that my Coffee Scales are gone.
I had two other emergencies last week. Stay tuned for these.