Thursday, May 23, 2013

Gruesome Playground Injuries: 2013 Edition

Subtitle: Oops, I Did It Again.

Regular readers will doubtless recall my mishap in the garden last July, which sent me to the Emergency Room with a 3-1/2 inch gash in my left leg.  The Head Gardener wishes me to state that Freddie Mercury is not to blame for my latest misfortune in the garden.  Having been relegated to placement against a fence where he cannot reach out and hook an unwary passerby, he was nowhere near the scene of the crime, as seen above.

As I was working in the mailbox bed last Friday, I lost my balance as I was about to clamber over the remnant of a Persian Vitex trunk.  Despite a heroic effort on my part to remain completely upright, I was unable to do so and fell forward, somehow managing not to plant my face and the length of my  body upon the ground.  Unfortunately for me, the plant below was in the way.  

It looks fairly innocuous, doesn't it? That empty space in the middle conceals the remainder of the trunk that was hacked back after freeze damage.  My left shin struck wood and when I arose and surveyed the damage, I lost no time in taking myself inside to hail my driver and hasten myself to the ER.  

When we were ushered back to the treatment area, I was happy to see that nurse/practitioner Chris Jones and nurse Laura Bell were once again on hand to make the necessary repairs.  I hailed them as old friends and their response was "Oh, yeah, you're the fish lady!"  Chris was happy to see how nicely his repair of last year's laceration had turned out: the scar is barely visible.  I told him that's why I won't allow anyone but him to stitch me up ;-)  While this injury only required 2 stitches to close it, I suspect the scar may be more unsightly.   In deference to those of delicate sensibilities, I won't share a picture ... it's not really all that gruesome but it's not pretty!

Stay tuned to this blog for further episodes of Extreme Gardening, no set time, no set place!

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

May Day! May Day!

Things have been a little busy around here but I couldn't let Garden Bloggers Bloom Day go by without at least a token post.  It occurred to me that the blooms of one plant in particular are cause for celebration this May 15th.  The beauty of Zephyranthes rosea (or could it be Habranthus robustus? ) lies in more than their delicate pink blooms.  It's what triggers these blooms that makes me especially happy.  My fellow gardeners know what I'm talking about: there's a reason they call them RAIN lilies!

Thursday, May 2, 2013

Three for Thursday: Blue, Blue, My Love is Blue ...

MAD MEN's most recent episode concluded with a classic '60s ballad, "Love is Blue (L'Amour Est Bleu)*  and it's been coming back to me all week. I do love my bluebonnets, even thought it's not been a good year for them.  The lack of winter rain made for poor germination and stunted growth.   I'm celebrating those that I do have and hoping for a better show next year.   *[note: at 1:42 the haunting melody ends and a jazzy version begins, which is somewhat disconcerting.]

I told the Head Gardener that the south bed between Wit's End and my neighbor's cried out for bluebonnets. That bed is home to Cher, the younger of the two Bauhinia galpinii, whose extravagant red-orange blooms are so showy.  I had a mental picture of how striking those blooms and the blue Lupinus texensis would look together.  Just one problem: the Bauhinia blooms several months later than the bluebonnets. Oh, well.  (The Head Gardener can kindly stuff a sock in it.)

You'll notice different colors in the middles of the flowers: some are pure white and some are reddish-purple.  Somewhere I'd heard that the color change occurred with pollination.  This Texas Beewatchers site says it's more likely a result of age but gives a good explanation of why the bees choose the white spots.  

And this is the ugly part of growing bluebonnets. The plants can look absolutely horrendous while they set seed and they violate the Head Gardener's amenities dreadfully. She concedes, however, that a gardener is often required to overlook such things if s/he wishes to enjoy future beauty.