Thursday, August 23, 2018

Friday, August 10, 2018

All This Rain...

..took it's toll on most all my garden plants. Others, are loving it. Cucumbers are all on their last root. Squash may be making a come back. Tigger melons are questionable. Cantaloupe? We'll see. Lots of green cherry maters. The Cherokee Purple maters haven't done well this year. I'm going back to the beefsteak next year.

Birdhouse Gourd. 'bout big as my hand. Surprised me, actually. I had been watching a couple smaller ones and this one made me jump back when I saw it. 

Friday, August 3, 2018

Mystery Plant Emerges

After having a large tree removed, a few weeks ago, this plant/weed appeared. Took the whoa-man a few minutes to Google and find it. And, a nasty feller it is...



  • Name also: Thornapple, Thorn Apple, Jimsonweed, Jimson Weed, Devil’s Trumpet, Devil’s Weed, Devil’s Snare, Tolguacha, Jamestown Weed, Stinkweed, Locoweed, Pricklyburr, Devil’s Cucumber, Hell’s Bells, Moonflower
  • Family: Nightshade Family – Solanaceae
  • Growing form: Annual herb.
  • Height: 20–120 cm (8–50 in.). Stem blunt-edged.
  • Flower: Regular (actinomorphic). Corolla white or purple, fused, funnel-shaped, long-tubed, shallowly 5-lobed, 5–10 cm (2–4 in.) long, side crinkled. Calyx fused, cylindrical, bristly, 5-lobed, lobes different sizes. Stamens 5, anthers attached to calyx-tube. Gynoecium composed of 2 fused carpels. Flowers solitary in axils.
  • Leaves: Alternate, stalked. Blade widely ovate, large-toothed, thin.
  • Fruit: Erect, egg-shaped, spiny, 3.5–7 cm (1.4–2.8 in.) long capsule, which opens into 4 lobes. Calyx base as a ring under capsule.
  • Habitat: Harbours, loading areas, wasteland, dumps, gardens. Also an ornamental.
  • Flowering time: July–October.
The Solanaceae family is known for the large number of highly poisonous alkaloids that they contain. Many of these have very tangible physical effects, so it’s easy to understand that many of the family were used in days gone by as medicinal and magical plants. Most members of genus Datura are American tropical or sub-tropical plants, but it also includes a certain cosmopolitan weed which grows casually in Finland right up to the Arctic Circle. With a bit of luck it can be found in harbours, dumps, waste ground or even in old medicinal gardens.
Thorn-apple’s poisonous properties have led to it being given less than cheery names around the world: In the USA Jimson weed’s jimson is a reference to Jamestown, the first English look-out post in North America that was burned in 1676 in a rebellion in which the kitchen slaves added jimson weed shoots to the English soldiers’ soup, knowing what the consequences would be.
Thorn-apple is packed with tropane alkaloids, which are common to many Solanaceae family plants. The whole plant is poisonous, especially the leaves and seeds. Over the years a number of beneficial and more dubious uses have been found for the plant. Medicinally, the alkaloids can be used to treat e.g. asthma, muscle cramps and Parkinson’s disease. According to tradition, the plant is also a source of a poison that stays in the body for a long time and only kills the victim a long time later. Thorn-apple’s tincture has also been claimed to give courage and enhance potency, but it would be a foolish thing indeed to start experimenting to see if this is true.
Shall I suit up and remove it? Probably. 

Sunday, July 15, 2018

I'm Back...

..for how long? Who knows? Starting fresh.

I noticed Blogger left me a message stating something about European Union (EU) laws requiring notifications to Europeans about the use of cookies. NO more Open ID commenting. NO more third party widgets and some other technical crap that makes no sense to me.  Apparently, I'm supposed to agree to these changes?  Hmmm.


Anyway all is well out yonder. I will say, some feller named, Jack stopped by and left me some 'magical' seeds.

Not beans but, birdhouse gourds. It's been growing about 6" a day. 

 ..more on the the birdhouse gourds.  I had seeds in the ground next to an old dead, almost gone stump. Had a different tree removed and this stump. The guy also mixed dirt and chips all around. I figured the gourds were gone for this year. Lo and behold. MAGIC.  And they came up in a perfect spot.

These are called 'Tigger Melons'. Softball size. Sweet. First time grown for me.

Popcorn!  It's tasseling and there's a few ears.  No children among 'em, yet.

For the past several years I've had problems with vine borer bugs. This year I covered these for their first 2 months. By George, I think we've licked 'em. 

Store bought cantaloupe. (Just to see if they'll grow.) Looks like it.

Hummingbird and butterfly plants. Probably too late for blooms but, next year, watch out.  Additional cuke and squash, also. 

Not that I need this, at the moment, but it's a great memento of my service, and I'll be able to beat the hell out of somebody when I get senile.  :)
That's it for now. It's been so hot here Buster Poindexter visited and sang a song.