My Nature Blog

Saturday, November 06, 2004

One Moonflower -- Ipomea Alba

Last spring I planted the seeds from my first moonflower vine. At the same time I planted the hyacinth beans from the Lab Lab vine. I didn't label the little plastic pots. When the hyacinth beans sprouted I thought that they were the moonflower sprouts. So I didn't purchase a moonflower vine at the Farmer's Market as I did in 2003.

Soon I realized that the developing plants were not moonflower vines. The moonflower seeds had not sprouted! Mid-summer I got around to buying a rather puney moonflower vine at the Farmer's Market. I repotted it and put it on the front porch. It did not grow very much.

Last month (October) I noticed that it had three buds on it. Two evenings ago (November 3) one of the buds opened and we had what was probably our only moonflower of 2004. I'll do better next year.

By the way, the hyacinth bean vines did just fine.

Saturday, September 11, 2004

Microstegium Vimineum

For the last month I have been spending a lot of time trying to get rid of microstegium -- also know as "bamboo grass", "Japanese stilt grass", "Nepalese browntop", etc. It is an awful weed, brought from Asia as packing materieal. Can I ever eliminate it from my garden?

Monday, September 06, 2004

Tsuga Canadensis

I have just purchased two more Canadian Hemlocks. I have planted five in the yard since we built the house in 1988. At least six had been planted along the back border of our almost square lot. The were planted by the botanist William Lanier Hunt who developed the property back in the 1950's. He also planted magnolias near some of the lot boundaries.

Canadian Hemlocks are beautiful evergreens that do well in partial shade. There is a Carolina Hemlock that growns in the mountains but does not do so well in the Piedmont. Unfortunately all hemlocks are endangered by the Woolly Adelgid. Nevertheless, I will plant my two new hemlocks soon.

Sunday, August 29, 2004

Eupatorium Fistulosus

To begin to make up for my recent purchase of two exotic invasives, today's plant is that wonderful native, Joe Pye Weed. I bought one plant from the North Carolina Botanical Garden this summer. I hope to purchase some more soon.

We saw spectacular clumps of Joe Pye Weed along the roadside on our trip to the mountains of Virginia and West Virginia in early August.

Monday, August 23, 2004

Pickerel Weed -- Eichhornia Crassipes

When I bought the umbrella palm for my little water garden, I also bought a water hyacinth. It turns out that it is a bad, bad plant. As an advocate of gardening with native plants, I am embarassed. I should have gotten pickerel weed !

Sunday, August 22, 2004

Umbrella Palm -- Cyperus Alternifolius

I purchased this plant on August 19, 2004, for my small water garden. Its common name is Umbrella Palm. I think that it is considered an exotic (it's from Madagascar) invasive in some settings, Florida for example.

Wednesday, August 18, 2004

Hello Blog World

Here is my first post. I have often thought of keeping a gardening journal. I am going to start with an emphasis on plants that I know and love as well as some I don't like.