Monday, July 26, 2010


But leaves are better.

Even allowing for the fact that the local ungulates, while not yet so populous as to have a grazed a browse line around my acreage, will still eat--or at least taste--any vegetation within reach (I have an ok photo of a whitetail enjoying ripe wild cherries straight off the tree that I'll post at some point), I finally realized that I may lean more towards houseplants rather than landscape plants simply because the tropical stuff has such fantastic foliage. Well, houseplants are green all year 'round, too. (Assuming I can keep them alive.) That's their real attraction. But still, how can you resist leaves like these?

The Monstera is becoming, well, truly monstrous. The new leaves (of which there are now another half dozen and more) are at or just beyond 15" and I don't think they are done yet.

Caladium. I had tried these once before, years ago; can't remember if I started the tubers myself, but I'm pretty certain that the plants never made it through the summer. This one is already twice as tall as it was when purchased, and may need to be potted up. Again.

Also a Caladium. A really tall caladium; 37" this morning, no telling how much height it gained today. As it is, it's tied up to keep it out of the way. And what's with the runners? Aren't tubers good enough? This one will soon need potting up. Also again. And I might need to scatter little pots about in which to root the plantlets popping up on the ends of all of those blasted runners... It was starting to send out a few when I purchased it, but I was more concerned with keeping the entire dratted thing alive, period, not about it taking over my front steps. (Could be worse: some caladium species, appropriately named Elephant Ears--which this one was tagged as, actually/eep--have leaves a couple of feet across.)

Cyperus. Another wetland plant posing innocently as a houseplant. This is going to be a tricky one to keep the cats out of when it comes inside...those leaves will be way too tempting. I had a decorative cage I was going to use for whatever protection it would afford, but this one took off as well: the tallest frond now rises a good 28". I don't know if the dove cage gets enough light to see the cyperus through the winter; the budgie cage does, but I fear those little blighters would shred the plant to bits even faster than the cats.

Philodendron selloum, aka (Lacy) Tree Philodendron. This is a young plant; the newer leaves are each coming in "lacier" than the ones before.

Oh, I haven't yet mentioned my lapse of a few weeks ago, have I? But I simply had to have this beauty. Hey, they don't climb or vine! They, um, just grow sideways... (This one isn't as large as it looks; it's still in its gallon growers pot sitting on the blue pot into which it should, maybe, fit when I get around to repotting it. Hmm.) But my mother had one that stayed beautifully self-contained for many years! Yeah, so I discovered before I rescued this one from a local grocery store that a high-school classmate has had one for the past 23 years and it takes up half of his rather large living room... Your point??? Surely I've mentioned before that I have no self-control or will power whatsoever.