Of Cynoglossum Grande, and Other Topics


We had two purposes this past weekend: I wanted to pot on plants in the greenhouse, and we both wanted to solve the problem of Duncan's electric boundary, which keeps breaking down.

This is a little off topic, but according to this informational site's page DogfenceDIY.com, to stop critters from nibbling through the wire, either keeping the wire a foot or two off the ground, or burying it in the ground is the way to go. Or you can try protecting it with a hose.

As we walked the boundary in the shady North Garden side, figuring out how we would lay out some new wire, I noticed that the ripgut brome is already producing seeds, and I pulled a bunch of it as we went along. I really need to get out there and start pulling weeds.

But I also saw that our Hound's Tongue, Cynoglossum grande, is back again, and has spread a little. It's in the lower part of the north garden, where it blends into The Rest of The Valley going down to the neighbor below.

I'd like to propagate Hound's Tongue but people say it's difficult. Last year I was so looking forward to collecting some seeds, and something munched the whole plant, before they ripened. I have now put a wire fence around the plant. There is another spot, along our road, where one plant grows every year, same plant, for several years now. They disappear in summer, and reappear every spring. A Facebook friend passed along this tidbit: when the flowers are pollinated, they turn pink! (Thanks, Debbie!)

On the Chaparral side of our tour around the boundary wire, I was very happy to see a pair of little chickadees - and a rufous sided towhee, I think.


I wonder if the chickadees will nest in our box. That reminds me - as I read on Montana Wildlife Gardener recently, it's time to clean out the bird boxes!

And here is where the wire crosses the driveway. Actually that's just a shameless excuse to show another picture of the new stairs we made weekend before last. So far, they've stood up to the rain just fine.


So we all went to the hardware store and got 14 gauge wire, much thicker than the 20 gauge that is standard (this may be overkill), and then Mr. Rat fed the wire through long sections of old hose that he taped together, while I worked in the greenhouse. Of which more anon. Next weekend we'll finish the dog boundary wire project, and Duncan will be, let us hope, once more contained. I'll let you know.

Comments

Cynthia G. said…
I hope you succeed in propagating the hound's tongue. I've been wanting one of those for years, but it doesn't seem to be sold anywhere. Also, I'm a little concerned about the seeds, which apparently tend to stick to socks, sweaters, pet fur, and so on.
Queer by Choice said…
I hope you succeed in propagating the hound's tongue. I've been wanting one of those for years, but it doesn't seem to be sold anywhere. Also, I'm a little concerned about the seeds, which apparently tend to stick to socks, sweaters, pet fur, and so on.
Country Mouse said…
Something is strange here. I received a comment email, but here, no comment. Hm... Thanks QBC - it's odd, I was just thinking I hadn't dropped by your blog in a while, and was planning to go visit, and there was your mail!
It does seem you garden is a little ahead of ours. I'm starting to see the Cynoglossum, but the Brome, as yet, isn't to the point of setting seed. We must share the same Cynoglossum predators though. After one I hoped to propagate got run over last year by a truck delivering yards of topsoil, I had my eye on another further up slope. A sizable specimen, and it was setting seed. I went back out a few days later, and the entire flowering stalk was chomped down to a nub. Our Clintonia suffered a similar fate.

I hope the extra heavy gauge wire helps keep Duncan contained. We haven't tried the invisible fence yet for our dogs, but our young one is such a spaz, we may need to soon!
Christine said…
I'd love to try Cynoglossum at some point, but its reluctance to propagate makes it pretty rare at nurseries. I love the style of this post- it's the "hey, what's happening over at Country Mouse's" kind of post. Thanks for the catch up!