Monday, February 16, 2009

February: Valentine's Day

Miss Foley, observing that the McGarden is looking rather drab and wintery, found a creative way to add a dash of color:
Four weeks. Sigh.

I poked around in the wayback garden and found a crocus or two that had emerged from the mulch during the warm snap, only to be flash-frozen when winter reasserted itself. I can feel Spring coming, though. Yep, here it comes.

Any day now.

Friday, February 13, 2009

February: go go gadget vine!

While I was looking the other way, a second vine of Bowiea volubilis shot out of the bulb and started winding its way through the mini blinds. I think it was there in the last photo as well and I completely missed it; perhaps I hadn't had my coffee yet?

Vine 1 is at 30 inches on day 28, giving a slightly more interesting growth rate of 1.07 inches/day. Vine 2 is at 20 inches and is an unknown age, so we'll just say it appeared today and is growing at a remarkable 20 inches/day. Isn't statistics fun?


Last year's vine, on the right, already pales in comparison. The oldest vine became crunchy and I removed it this morning.

I think that little white trellis isn't going to cut it anymore...

Friday, February 06, 2009

February: the energizer vine keeps going and going

Bowiea volubilis, day 21, is now 21 inches long, making the growth rate very boring to calculate. Sorry for bad photo... the silly camera doesn't focus well close up. Or perhaps the silly camera operator needs to read the manual again.

Sunday, February 01, 2009

February: first sign of spring!

I've learned not to trust the arrival of the robins as the first sign of spring. I saw robins cheerfully roosting in my neighbor's tree in January and I know that they overwinter in the white cedars on campus (hard to believe that anyone would consider Chicago a balmy southern land of plenty but they seem to like it). The snowdrops come up at all different times and if they're trying to come up right now, they have a good 6 inches of snow to struggle through. No, the first sign of spring is the first territorial call of a cardinal. I heard one this morning. Hooray!!!! Now we just need to get that groundhog to agree....