Harry “Potter”

All was quiet last night in the patch… well at least it was for a while.  We all were settled in to watch our 105th viewing of the new “Tinkerbell” movie, when we realized we were being burgled. There was a tremendous commotion on our back deck, I scurried outside to startle the perpetrator.

    
“Run away, run away”!  “What the………”   “Racoooooooooooooooon”!

When I burst through the back door, with camera in tow,  this masked bandit jumped on top of our child proof gate in a rather Johnny Knoxville “Jackass” fashion. The gate crashed to the ground, and this is the shot I blindly took of him, scampering down my steps and away into the night dark…

  
…and this was the carnage he left behind. Fish food  “Blub, Blub..So inconsiderate”!
everywhere! I decided not to clean it up as I figured this bandit would be back a few minutes later to finish off what he started.
I was right, the next morning all this fish food was pretty much hoovered up. I now keep the fish food in my outdoor refrigerator.

 
“Francoise, have you ever seen a more perfect place?
“No Richard, it is fantasteek, all that sweet smelling artemisia!”


I wanted to investigate this tiny hut further but a small sound turned my head to a clearing. I turned my camera (naturally on full macro) and caught these two tiny castaways in the middle of one of their daily chores.
I surmised that the hut had to be theirs, then wondered how many years they had been marooned out here?, cut off from any miniature human contact. I wondered if they had heard the recent rock gig in my Asparagus fern
amphitheater.

The cooler temperatures we have been experiencing have been a welcome relief (still no rain though).  Imagine my surprise when I happened to stumble upon this tropical micro-climate hidden in the depths of my silver artemisia “Powis Castle”. I was amazed to find this swiss family robinson hut perched on a stone slab that looked remarkably like sand! The tropical vista looked like a scene from “The Beach”.


“Aaargh! this Powis Castle is so dense, how is the fire coming along?”
“One more stick and we are ready to start cooking sis”.
“What is on the menu tonight bro, tell me it is not another one of those spiny crabby “Orb Weavers” that taste like chicken?”


“Afraid so sis”…


“Oh and we also have some potato vine to
accompany it for a little starch”.

 I had no idea that the potato on this vine existed so close
to the surface, and that they were so large.

But all he kept ranting on about was a ball called Wilson.

 

I neglected to mention that I did encounter one other castaway in
the higher altitudes of this patch of Artemisia:

 
Japanese Fatsia (Fatsia japonica)……..Its a fly magnet (zzzoom in)!

 
(You don’t want to plant this one too close to a back deck!)
           
“I don’t know what it is about that Fatsia plant,  Here is the glossy foliage
but I am curiously drawn to it.”                          (pic taken earlier this year)


Oh go on then, just one more! What is this?
I have seen them everywhere this year. They look like extra large black flies,  a bee like body with the eyes and head of a fly. This one photographed on my copper canyon daisy, now in rapid decline.

Moving around to the side of the house…
Agave Impervius”

 
      
 

The couple of agave pups I planted from my beanstalk earlier this year seem to be doing fine, despite my neglect and ultra-parched pot soil. Wait, could that still be the original stalk on the far left?
All the pots are getting blanketed in leaves from the overhead Post Oak, all good insulation.
Look how much they have grown!
The little green pot (left pic) has been sitting in this spot for ages. I walk past it and never hardly throw it a glance, poor thing. I planted a single mountain laurel seed in it a few years back as an experiment, and slowly but surely it has grown. I will transplant it in another couple of years.

Shade tolerant evergreen shrub from Japan.
Grows best in loose, well drained soil with regular watering and full shade.
Always the last plant of the year to bloom in my yard, perhaps being a native of Japan and South Korea it is simply confused by our seasons.

The creamy white flowers appear in late fall and early winter, offering a final meal to any late-flying insects, unfortunately mostly flies. I have never seen a plant that attracts so many flies, anyone know the scientific reason for this?

  
An ornamental cabbage arterial tree.            “I Vant you”


And finally to the front yard, and a few more purples… Amaranth in all of it’s purple fall color.

 
“You will read my journal Mr Man” (Misery,1990)

Stayed Tuned for:
“A Purple Harvest”

All material © 2008 for east_side_patch. Unauthorized reproduction prohibited.

                             

 

 


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~ by eastsidepatch on December 6, 2008.

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