Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Outdoor update

There are now a dozen different varieties of sweet peas, ranging in scent from soapy to spicy complexity. The latest arrival has a red-and-white striated flower. Just as the milkweeds are trying to put forth new leaves, more caterpillars are there to consume them. We haven't found even one chrysalis, so some creature must be eating the larvae before they reach that stage. A second type of clematis is blooming. There are torenia seedlings. Surviving hyacinth beans are blossoming. The first morning glory is pale blue with dark-blue rays or spokes. Zinnias and cosmos are appearing, but they're puny in size. Cherokee Purple is setting tomatoes. There's a squash blossom atop the compost. Paler blue delphiniums are here, as are two-tone blue bachelor buttons. It's easy to tell which households are watering when they shouldn't and which ones have applied fertilizer that's high in nitrogen. Loquat fruits are few but gigantic; the creatures can't keep up with them. When passers-by attempt to pick the firewheels they succeed only in uprooting the plants.


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