Sunday, July 27, 2008

Dirty Tales from the Garden - Alien Invasion

Today's feature plant is Love-in-a-Mist (Nigella damascene).

Otherwise known around my house as the “Alien Seed Pod”

These first came to my home from seeds gathered from my mother’s house in South Carolina. I am not sure where she got them - I don't recall any UFO sightings in the area, but sometimes I gotta wonder.

“These are good shade plants,” she said. And at her house they were – lightly scattered beneath a birch tree they gave a bit of delicate color to that spot.

But at my house – the “Alien Seed Pods” obviously found something they loved –because what started out as “lightly scattered” in the shade soon became “thickly clustered” – anywhere and everywhere a seed touched the ground. Full sun, part shade, in the lawn, in the cracks of the sidewalk. Even under the Black Walnut tree where most things do not like to grow.

I love these plants, though. From the first delicate ferny fronds that peek up in the spring, to the unexpected colors (I never ever know what color they are going to be), to the wild variations in height (some are 2” – some are 12” or more), to the fun and funky seed pods, they never cease to bring a smile.

And I love what this website says about their bloom time:

Late Spring/Early Summer
Mid Summer
Late Summer/Early Fall
Mid Fall

Around here –that pretty much means I have “aliens” in various stages of growth and bloom and "poddage" from spring until frost.

It's so great. They are also not common around here, so they make for some interesting conversations.

Nearly time for the first pod harvest. Anyone need some seeds? Just send me your address and I will pop a pod or two in the mail to you.


Higgins Design Studio said...

Mom's Love in a mist did not come up this year. We think it is because of the drought. She'll probably want more, but not until after the drought is gone.
Love you sis!

Amelia said...

Add my name to your list of people wanting seeds from your "alien plant".

When the time comes I can share the following seeds if you are interested:

Hyacinth Bean
four o'clocks
cypress vine.

Enjoyed reading about your shop hopping - always interesting to see different stores...their products, their displays, and most of all their interest in your patronage.

Have a great week.


Michele said...

Me! Me! I'd love some seeds. Our most faithful volunteer is the cilantro in the garden. We have tons of it every year. I like the taste OK, but I really love the smell of it - though I realize a lot of people don't. At any rate, I could share cilantro seeds with anybody who would like them :)

Blue Yonder said...

Whoa! Those are so cool!

debbie said...

What an amazing plant! I would love to have some. Thanks!

Beth said...

I have these at our house! I love the name "love in a mist". Do you cut the seed pods or let them go? I've been letting them take their course and have seen some new blooms. I do love the way they look.