Tag Archive | gloriosa superba

My Poor, Neglected Garden…

…and my poor, neglected blog! I’m so sorry to have been AWOL yet again! My only excuse is that writing a book is a major time-suck beyond all imaginings. I am in the revision and editing stages, and it seems like I’ve been sitting at this computer at least 8 to 12 hours every day.  The house is full of dust bunnies the size of small ponies. Some of them are asking to be fed, now, along with the real animals. And the garden? Well, let’s just say it’s best not to go out there  without leaving a note indicating what part of the yard you’ll be in and when you expect to return—just in case search parties become necessary.

Okay, you get my drift, here. No time in the garden tends to mean not too many posts on Who’s Your Granny. But I did go out there yesterday and take note of the most offensive areas, hoping I might be able to do some yard work over the weekend. My granddaughter is coming to see us next weekend. She’s 8. And not very tall yet. I don’t want her to get lost amid the rampant horticultural overgrowth. And while I was walking around making notes on what should be done, but probably won’t, I found that my volunteer gloriosa lilies (Gloriosa superba) are blooming. Because they have popped up in various places, I have little control over where they wander, and their tiny tenacious tendrils (how alliterative!) cling to neighboring plants as well as any supports in the area. Thus, their spidery red flowers are dripping off of bushes, trees, and weeds, instead of being neatly organized on the supports I offered them, but never got around to tying them to. 

I cut several for vases, and have discovered the fragile looking flowers last quite a long time in water. It’s raining today, (oh, no…no yardwork for me, darn it!) so I’m sharing a picture of the ones inside my house, instead of outside. If you have never grown these wonderful vines, you really should. They grow from tubers that you can buy as you would other bulbs, and they die back to the ground every year. But they multiply underground, like many other tubers, and soon you will find them popping up in the warm months to cover an entire trellis with their wonderful blooms. They come in yellow and a few other shades, but none so truly worth of the name “gloriosa” as the red one, which is sometimes sold as the variety “Rothschildiana.” 

Without further ado, I present to you, the gloriosa lily! Enjoy!

gloriosa

If you notice, the top leaf in the picture has a curled tip. That is the tendril. This is the only vine I’ve ever seen that clings via leaves that modify themselves into curling tendrils. Maybe some of you know of another that does, but I don’t. And that little curl can extend to wrap around and around a support stem.

gl1

Another angle. BTW, that “Green Anthology” you see lying there is a great little book of collected poems, short stories, essays, and book excerpts, all featuring the theme of “Green.” I was very lucky to have been asked to contribute, and have one of my poems in the book. And June 15, the “Summer” anthology comes out, in which I will have three of my poems. I’m really excited about having some of my work published, and can’t wait until I have a novel out there, too. I guess it’s been worth neglecting my garden for a while. The book is available here, should you want to check it out. 

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