Thursday, December 06, 2007

Seeds and fruits...of a growing season past. Now that my ground is snow-covered and frozen, I want to recall some of the "sleeping beauties" that keep the show going year after year (even without the gardener's help). First is Goat's Beard, which kind of resembles dandelion-on-steroids... ....especially the seed head, only it's 4X larger, and prettier, IMO.
Nice fuzzy lupine seeds....I always leave these alone to scatter and germinate as they will, but I may try setting some aside to germinate next year.
Next is Thimbleberry, which is native to the Upper Peninsula in Michigan which is where I first encoutered it. Very large and yummy berries, but these promising buds didn't produce any berries. Two things may account for this-weather too dry, or birds too fast! At any rate, I never got to see or taste berries, but maybe next year!

Unidentified grass seed with bonus Nursery Web Spider. Man, I love to see plenty of bugs around!
Seeds from my shooting star plant...again this cycle is usually left to its own devices, but I may try some germinating of my own next season.
Another un-identified grassy seed head....pretty as far as I'm concerned so I always let them do their thing.

Now this green seed pod forming is on my yellow ladyslipper orchid, and it's the second year this beauty has set seed-yay! I always let the pod mature and dry out on the plant, then remove it to scatter the seeds wherever I feel they might germinate and grow. This is a slow process, but I don't care to buy more plants, since they're rather expensive. But someday I hope my property is rife with endangered wildflowers like these!

Nice clump of grass with its red seeds...wish I could remember the name! The tags are all under snow now, too....pretty sure it's "Japanese something-or-other"...sorry.
This datura seed head split apart to send its seeds away to sprout elsewhere....and I should have saved some for next years' "moon garden", but that's okay. This year, instead of buying the plants again, I'm gonna start them from purch. seed early indoors, so I'll buy one more year, then diligently save seed.
Some nice hops "fruits"...I have never aspired to make my own beer with these, since others already do such a fine job. But they look nice, and the vines aren't at all invasive in my climate (they can be elsewhere).
Hosta seeds (not sure from which plant)...I have never tried to do anything with these, although my mom and sister say they have "mystery babies" come up here and there all the time. In fact, I have two oddball seedlings from them, named "Cathy's Baby" from my sister, and "Big Mystery" from my mom (it's very big with blue, corrugated leaves). Not exactly "official hosta breeder tactics", but we run a very informal operation around here!

Yummy gooseberries, they hang low on the branch, so I did beat the birds to get a taste!
More awesome grass seeds...again, I can't remember the name :(
These berries are 'Red Lake' Currants, and I managed again to beat the birds for a taste. Somewhat mealy, but very tasty!
This pod is from our nativebeach pea, it comes up kinda all over the place. But it's well behaved, and the flowers are pretty. This is the first year I'd seen!
Rose hips...on the plants at work, but mine bloomed this year and tried to set hips...once again, I'm unsure if it was drought or over-anxious birds, but no hips on my roses this year.
Seed heads from Indian Pipe. These are persisting from a "bloom" in was too dry this year. I didn't look to see if there was anything inside, I'm pretty "hands-off" with most of the wild things, especially the ones I don't see often.
More currants, this one is called Ben Lomond, and it was yummy as well. Maybe next year I'll have enough to make something out of them.
Another wild grass seed head....I really think these are pretty, which may sound funny to some folks, considering all the "real flowers" that are out there to admire. But I'm weird like that, and have embraced my weirdness just fine. :) In fact, when I see a grassy, "undeveloped" area, I don't think "What an eyesore, they should mow that", but instead "What a nice habitat for birds and small animals"...just can't help it!
This is some sort of thistle, smooth sow thistle I'm pretty sure. I actually planted this on purpose, because I like thistles and birds do, too. And as thistles tend to do, this one is making itself right at home, settling in here and there (and there, and there).
Common teasel...I like that name, and the seed heads are way cool when mature and dried.
Pretty white berries on my snowberry...heh, they blend in with the landscape right now!

And finally, the seed heads from my 'Sunrise Serenade' morning glory. I'm very happy to find these, because I thought it got killed by frost before seed could set. But here they are, so I took some in for insurance that I have this growing again next year...
....pop them open and dry them out a bit....that's the best part-the hope that seeds provide us for seasons to come. So store your energy and sleep well, cuz' I have plans for you guys!


Anonymous said...

that goat's beard plant looks so precious.

lisa said...

I like it! It's tall and wispy...and the flowers are nice, too.

Annie in Austin said...

What a cool post for the 'off-season', Lisa, with a big variety of interesting stuff.

The lupine photo seems familiar since Bluebonnets are a lupine... their seed pods look a lot like yours. Seeds for grasses and teasel, goats beard and snowberry I've seen, but Ladyslippers! Wow.

We grew hops in Illinois and heard that you can put the dried seed clusters into dream pillows, but we moved before I got around to trying it.

Annie at the Transplantable Rose

lisa said...

Dream pillow? That sounds like a great idea! Thanks Annie! I didn't know bluebonnets were related to lupines....interesting!

chuck b. said...


I didn't realize dead dodacatheon flowers pointed up like that...interesting.

Something ate my snowberries early this year. I was hoping they'd still be around to decorate the garden right now, but I got cleaned out months ago.

vonne said...

I recognized a couple of those grass seeds, but can't recall the names either! Old age sucks...
Great post! I had never seen most of that stuff! Cool.

Your 'babies' are all tucked in and doing well. :)

Rurality said...

Yep, yep, dry those hops to use in dream pillows! I put them in several of mine. They are supposed to promote sleep.

Nice series!

lisa said...

Chuck-Maybe the birds got your snowberry...have they been eating your suet? A lot of birds like fruits of all kinds, so I bet that's it.

Vonne-Heh...yea, I think I've forgotten a lot, then sometimes I'm amazed at what I DO remember. The brain is something all right! I think they're all tucked in well, too...good thing we got all this snow right before the cold snap (sub-zero lows this past week)...the insulative qualities of snow make all the difference!

Karen-Thanks! I absolutely will!