Beewatching’s Blog

Beating back the wilderness…
September 1, 2009, 12:45 pm
Filed under: 1

late summerThat’s what I tell my next door neighbor when I venture into the untamed southeast corner of my yard. This is the part of my overall plan I haven’t gotten to yet. The truth is, though, that I like having a little bit of jungle in my tiny corner of the world. (OK, I don’t really have a plan — I just look at what’s there and decide on the spot what should come next.)

Everyone should have a personal safari to explore. My jungle wasn’t always so unkempt. The previous owners even mowed grass there. At the back is an abandoned (to the animals) play fort, and the undergrowth almost hides the stepping stone path I began a few years ago. Ultimately, though, I will be hacking through with a scheme to build a shade-lovers civilization, making it a place where others dare to tread. There are already signs of progress: several small winterberry trees, daylilies, pachysandra procumbens, monarda (in the only patch of reliable sun along the south fence) and a lovely viburnum. This is where the fireflies live, so I have another reason to proceed slowly with my landscaping plans.

I HOSTA DO SOMETHING ABOUT THIS — A couple years back, I moved a few struggling little hosta plants into this southeast neighborhood, hoping that they wouldn’t be engulfed by the well-established lilies and Virginia creeper. Plant and forget — one of my mottos, so off I went to attend to my active corners. A season or two later, I took a look. A couple scoops of compost, a rainy season or two, and these transplants have grown to a size that reminds me of that alien plant in Little Shop of Horrors. I confronted these thugs and demanded, “Who are you, what have you done with the rest of my plants?” I exaggerate a little, but the monarda now grow parallel to the ground looking for a place to emerge beyond those umbrellas of leaves and finally turn their scarlet faces upward, desperate for sunlight. Walking on the path is next to impossible.

I could move those hulks again, but if they take this well to transplanting, who knows how many other species they’ll displace? So, I have decided to leave them as is. Maybe I’ll make a summer home under them, setting up a little table and serving lemonade to lost travelers, under skylights thoughtfully provided by leaf-snacking slugs.

In reality, the biggest hosta plants I’ve ever seen are in front of a nursing home in Haddon Heights. Those are several feet high and at least five feet wide, a Seiboldiana variety, I guess. You could hide bodies in there. But don’t. (I just watched Little Shop of Horrors again recently.)

This photo shows part of the front yard, in case you’re wondering. You can’t see it here, but just the other side of the juniper, another expanding hosta awaits its opportunity. Like The Blob, but much prettier. Don’t turn your back.


1 Comment so far
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Great Blog!……There’s always something here to make me laugh…Keep doing what ya do 🙂

Comment by Tsquare

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