Tuesday, September 22, 2009

100 Species Challenge

1. Strawberry
2. Black-eyed Susan
3. Rose of Sharon, Althea
4. Potentilla
5. Vinca
6. Grape Hyacinth
7. Tiger Lily
8. Lespedeza
9. Plantain

10. English Ivy

Former residents had planted English ivy in a couple of areas in the back. And we ripped it back out.


There are still little bits of root sprouting up near the foundation of the house...

and bits of it here and there in the lawn....

We managed to kill all of it in the bed around this maple (which also featured poison ivy mixed into the English Ivy -- which is a common problem), but we weren't able to get all of the dead vines off the tree trunk because the trunk had started growing around them.

Hairy vine no friend of mine. Which is supposed to refer to poison ivy, but after whacking back this particular stand it seems appropriate.

Whenever I think of Hedera helix growing like crazy all over the landscape I remember my friend Mickey, who used to work at a florist. She said that whenever a bride-to-be came into the shop to look at wedding flowers the owner would tell a story about how some bride had used English ivy in her bridal bouquet and then planted it in her garden. Mickey said the story was actually untrue, but they ended up selling a lot of ivy in bouquets because it sounded so cool to do that. Then we all guffawed at the gullibility of the people buying the ivy based on this story -- because openly laughing at stupidity was considered appropriate in that time and place. I later moved out of New England to the south, and commented to my cousin how much kinder southerners were since they didn't openly mock people, and my cousin, who lived in Atlanta, said, "No, they're just laughing at you behind your back." Hmmm. In the meantime, we eventually moved to a house in Dover that had this really oddly-placed ivy, and I swear it came out of a pot that the former resident had placed up on the front porch, so it was sort of like the bridal-bouquet-thing coming to life to haunt me. All of which goes through my head -- even the bit about laughing behind someone's back versus laughing in their face -- when I see escapee ivy in the landscape. Which is a lot of luggage for one plant to carry, but the ivy seems to be bearing up well under the task.

On the other hand, they make dandy houseplants.

Since I've noticed that people have a distressing habit of googling their way to my notes on plants looking for actual helpful information rather than weird anecdotes about my life with the plants, may I refer you to this web site for more information about Hedera helix.


Ami said...

Well! Aren't we just a bundle of complexes?


Funny post.

Bridgett said...

I'm getting that too, the googled for information things. Plants and night nursing, actually...and all I have is lamentations and anecdotes to give them!