Wednesday, September 24, 2008

It's Taking Over!!

As you may recall, last spring I frequented
greenhouses much as an alcoholic frequents bars.

I went to greenhouses in five different towns.
I enjoy trying new unusual plants so I bought a currant tomato.
The tomatoes are great, but they're a pain to pick.  One of
my colleagues just advised to roll them off the stem into my hand.
Uh, huh.  Her tomato is probably staked and 
trained to drop tomatoes on demand.

I staked mine, but it didn't seem to matter.

It was a nice experiment, but probably not one I'll repeat.

We normally plant birdhouse gourds along our patio fence. 
We can usually plant 8 to 12 and have the entire fence covered. 
We didn't find any this year.  I found castor beans. 
They are a lot of fun to grow.
The leaves are incredible.  It's nice to 
grow something big besides weeds.

They are even more interesting when they go to seed.

In addition to castor beans, I found
ornamental millet.  Did I find birdhouse gourd plants?
No, instead I found a cute, cuddly kitten that 
was free with the purchase of a catmint plant.  
Of course I bought one and got Willowby,

The greenhouse that had the kitten had snake gourds 
and apple gourds for $2.29 apiece, so I bought one of each.

The apple gourd never really grew. 
It didn't die, but it didn't grow either. 
It was kind of weird.  

The snake gourd didn't do much either...

... until mid-August.

Then little shoots began appearing everywhere.

It began to bloom and small snake-like gourds appeared.


That eventually turns into this --- 

Our one plant turned into this --- 
Our fence is 25 feet long and it is completely covered.
This is only one plant!

Mardell is scared to walk down the brick pathway!

It seems to reach out and grab her and she walks by!

Sitting at the table and enjoying the peaceful
singing of the crickets and the diving swallows 
is out of the question.  Sit for any amount of 
time and you never know what might happen!

The little tentacles reach out and grab your neck!

It overtook the three plum trees and was
happy to hang snakes from the branches.

We haven't quite figured out what we're going to do
with all of these snake gourds.  All we know
is we can't go to the patio without a machete!

1 comment:

Sue said...

I believe Vanna White on Wheel of Fortune had one of your snake gourds on at the end of the show. Very interesting. I think I am going to have to come visit your 'acreage'. It's just too beautiful......