Thursday, May 18, 2006

A Gentle Plea for Chaos

Blue Geraniums and Million Bells
Originally uploaded by Rozanne.
I’ve not said a word about my garden this year and last year you couldn’t shut me up about it. What’s the deal? Did I pave over my garden in concrete? No. It’s just that, I guess, there’s not a lot about this year’s garden that’s so very different from last year’s garden. Except. The garden is filled with quite a number of plants I never planted! Also, plants that I thought had died an ignominious death a few years back have somehow resurrected themselves. Chaos rules! And I'm not at all displeased. It adds the element of surprise to gardening. Not that there isn't already plenty of that to be had when you're a gardener, e.g., you come out one morning to find your foxgloves skeletonized by cutworms. But I'm talking about good surprises.

Anyway. See this deep burgundy snapdragon?

Poppies and Snapdragons

I have no idea how it got here. Well, I have a few theories. Two years ago, a similar snapdragon (perhaps its grandpappy) managed to grow out of a teensy little crack in our front steps. I don’t know how a snapdragon seed ever got itself wedged in there as I’ve never planted snapdragons, nor do I know why it would find that to be a hospitable place to grow but it did. That grandpappy, however, did not return last year, which was not surprising because snapdragons are annuals. But this year a snapdragon once again appeared, and I quite like the spot it’s chosen, although some might say that burgundy snapdragons and bold and blowsy orange Oriental poppies aren’t quite the thing.

Another plant that deserves recognition and praise is the yellow Calibrachoa ‘Million Bells’ pictured above. I love these creepy-crawly pee-wee petunias. I planted two of them last year as foils to all the blue hardy geraniums I cannot stop myself from planting. They weave in and out of the geraniums quite artfully, I think. And get this. They somehow survived the winter—a winter that included ice storms. Pretty good for an annual that is native to freakin’ Brazil.

There are a few mystery plants as well. Oddly, all seem to be huddled over near the raised bed where I grow herbs. I think one is a bellflower. I’ll know in a few days. I’ve also got a clematis-y looking vine wending its way up the laurel hedge. I’m thinking it may possibly be a porcelain berry vine (Ampelopsis brevipedunculata). I had one of those the first year I planted my garden. It found it wanting and in a fit of pique got rid of it. But how, exactly, did I get rid of it? I don’t rightly remember. I probably felt it was wasteful to just throw the plant away and yet it wasn’t performing so I didn’t want to keep it. Half-assed solution? Dig it up and replant it, but plant it in an out-of-the-way place where it would probably fail to thrive and I could be shut of it, without having to suffer the guilt of having ruthlessly uprooted it and tossed it in the yard waste wheelie bin. But here it is—(if it is the porcelain berry) four years later—rising from the dead. Zounds!


Post a Comment

<< Home