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Thursday, July 17, 2008

Poke Babies in Pokeberry

It is an incredbibly nice morning here in Charlotte. For some reason this week its been in the 60s early in the morning. Right now its 69. By noon we'll be in the 80s but for now--wow! The sun is shining, the birds are singing and playing all over the garden, perched at feeders, or on flowers... All lovely.

I went out to water in the cool of the morning and saw some curious plants coming up in one of the trough pots under my arch trellis. These must have been planted last year I think-- 2 baby Poke Salet plants! Pokeberry in pots! I noticed another poke plant yesterday growing smack in the middle of the path between my 2 veggie beds. I haven't decided if that is a good place for it-- I think I may try to move it. Poke is really sort of a weed here, but I just love the looks of it. In the right situation it can grow to be 9 feet tall with gracefully arching red branches covered with large drooping green leaves and clusters of gorgeous white flowers & berries that go from pale green to red to dark rich purple. The birds plant poke best. Looks like my birdies are repaying all my kindness to them by giving me some pokeberry!

Another wild plant that grows here in North Carolina is a beautiful shrub/tree that blooms in early July. It is the Mimosa. Mimosa has fluffy pink flowers that I think MUST be the balmy sweet smell so prevalent on my street right now. The leaves are very pretty, resembling ferns. They bloom when all the early spring bloomers are done--like the dogwood and the azaleas. I found a baby Mimosa growing right in front of the carport patio this week--I think I will pot that up, and maybe some poke too.

These wild plants sometimes have a bad reputation because they tend to freely pop up wherever they feel like it. Some folks frown upon growing 'invasive' plants like that--but Well--personally I think it is plenty easy to mow them down if they are where you don't want them--so why not have them where you do? Besides --it would truly be a losing battle to try to rid the neighborhood of them-- sort of like trying to stop the folks from letting their cats outside. it just aint gonna happen.

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