Friday, January 06, 2006

MY GARDEN -2 (well, what should have been 2--written before Monday Morning...)

Continuing with more about my garden...over this almost 20 years, some of the plants have grown, unbelievably....The family of plants known as Euphorbia's are generally a pretty fast growing group, though many do not grow "tall", but grow "spread out"....(The Euphorbia family is about 1,500 species strong....I know, it's hard to fathom)....anything that has a milky substance inside is part of the Euphorbia family, have things as diverse as a big tall cactus-like-plant such as this Amak Verigated to a small and beautiful Pointsettia....

And to see what this plant looked like about 8 months after I planted it is, a tiny person, less than two feet high!
This is in a very small border-type planter that lines the small walkway going to my front-door. At best, it only got sun around 3 hours a day...because that particular section of the entry-way just doesn't get more sun than, it took many many years to reach the roof line...even though this Euphorbia Amak Verigated is normally a very fast grower in 'the wild'.

Here are two views of this same plant as it got closer to that much needed roof line so it would get 12 hours of sun a day!

Here, looking towards the front door..this poor spindly looking person
didn't really show the signs of how magnificent it would one day be....but, one must have faith, you know?

And, the close-up of the upper section gives just a hint of what might be coming...though in truth, I had no idea that once this actually got above the roof line it would take off and become a gorgeous gorgeous tree-like HUGE plant, probably 50 feet high....
maybe even one can really get up to the top to measure it....all we can do is try to take some photographs that may hopefully give you the 'idea' of it's enormity....


This was as far as I got in what was going to be the 2nd post about my Cactus Garden....and then, the tragedy happened on Monday...So...this beautiful plant now has about 25 less arms...(As much as Seven and the guys could remove on Thursday...) and it is still questionable if it can be saved...part of the problem is that it weighs so very much...we now realize it probably weighs 3 or 4 tons...Yes...Tons.

And how did we come to this conclusion? Well, since Seven and his crew had to lift and carry each of these 25 arms....and estimated that some of them weighed 150 pounds or more (many being over 14 feet with their own arms!!!....)
and in addition there are all the heavy heavy arms that are still left on this wonderful plant...and this unbelievable thick wood-like do the math!

And as I write this, it is still on that 45 dregree angle where is has been since Monday Morning...the 'pully' mentioned in my Thursday Thirteen turned out to be a Mickey Mouse type solution....which had no chance of working...and any and all of the other things that Seven considered were all Mickey Mouse, too, I'm afraid...not because he doesn't care, but because he just doesn't have the answers to this enormous, in more ways than one, problem.....

So, I called 'The Cavalry'....that is: There is a Nursery out in Pasadena,
Meleenee, that I discovered twenty years ago, which only grows and sells Cactus and Cactus Related plants! A true treasure trove, if that is your is a family owned and run business...and the father, who is now dead, had 6 or 7 children, all girls...One of the daughters runs the Nursery..her name is Molly, and all of them couldn't be nicer...Over the years I bought an enormous amount of plants from them...some 'speciman'....ALL I call on Molly whenever I encounter a problem that I don't have the answers for....she has always been extremely helpful and was no different, though it was difficult to get her to grasp the enormnity of this plant....Once she got it, she said, "You need a trees service to come out and help you trim those arms...". Duhhh! Well, yes! (lol) I got that, but what was more difficult to explain was because of the height, we couldn't reach a lot of the arms, and, when they could reach them...they were so top heavy that without proper support they would fall...and most likely break...and possibly cause more damage to the already damaged roof!!!

Once that became clear to her, she said... "You need a 'cherry picker'! Well, when I finally got what THAT was, it then became clear that some kind of Major Tree Service was needed...again, the wonderful Molly searched the internet and faxed me some names of local-to-Hollywood tree services....After a number of hours, I spoke with a very nice man named Mark Bruna who is coming today..(Friday) to evaluate the situation....

I have sort of made peace with the idea that this great magnificent plant will most likely have to be cut down...and yes, the amazing thing about these plants is each arm can be planted...Not that I can plant that many...there isn't enough room for the all-together 50 odd arms....but I will happily give many of them to people who would like to have them and will plant them in their own gardens...I've done that for all the years I've had this magnificent collection. Whenever we have cuttings we plant what we can and give the rest's a lovely thing to do and a very satisfying thing to know that arms from your plants are all over the place being propagated and continuing to spread joy...)

So..Stay tuned for the next installment of the mystery of "The Euphorbia Amak Verigated's" outcome...Right now, it looks pretty bad because all these plants grow as needed and balance themselves as needed-- as they grow, so they always have a beautiful no longer has that shape, and after today and the amputation of so many arms, it never will have this same shape again....even if we can save it.

Not the end of the world, I know. There are much much worse things, and so, I'm trying to be as philosophical as I can about the outcome here...whatever happens will be, what happens...or as Doris Day sang...Ca Sera, Sera....But in all honesty, it is a problem I wish I had not had to become philosophical about...given all the other losses in the garden over these last two and a half years...

Like I said....stay tuned....

had this to say:

Wow, you have really interesting trees in your garden! I've never seen them before ever!

I'm back here from Michele's! :-)

Friday, January 6, 2006 at 2:29:00 AM PST 

had this to say:

Those are impressive!

Wendy directed me here :)

Friday, January 6, 2006 at 2:49:00 AM PST 

had this to say:

It's comforting to know that if the plant can't be saved at least you can keep some of it's "babies"!

Friday, January 6, 2006 at 4:11:00 AM PST 

had this to say:

Aw, so sorry to hear about your amazing tree! I hope it can be saved. Keep us posted. Great pictures!

Friday, January 6, 2006 at 6:05:00 AM PST 

had this to say:

The poor thing is leaning badly. It is a beauty! I love the picture of it when it was just 2 feet tall with arms stuck out!! Amazing how tall it got. I wondered if you could replant those arms. Glad to hear that they can be. I hope they can save it for you! It's such a thing of wonder since we don't see things like that growing around here! Good luck and keep us posted Naomi!!

Friday, January 6, 2006 at 8:07:00 AM PST 

had this to say:

My husband loves those things.

Michele sent me.

Friday, January 6, 2006 at 10:14:00 AM PST 

Blogger Joe
had this to say:

Hope that it can be saved. I enjoyed the post.

Here via Michele.

Friday, January 6, 2006 at 10:16:00 AM PST 

had this to say:

wow! i absolutely adore your garden!! what a beauty! :)

stopped in via michele's! :) have a great day! :)

Friday, January 6, 2006 at 10:26:00 AM PST 

had this to say:

Oh wow, when I saw your post yesterday I didn't realise it wasn't a tree (I'm not good at anything horticultural).

What an example of patience paying off:-) such a sweet little cactus in the shade & such a whopping great thing once it finally reached the sun.

here from Micheles today, although I came & lurked earlier:-)

Friday, January 6, 2006 at 11:07:00 AM PST 

had this to say:

Wow, how impressive. Michele sent me....

Friday, January 6, 2006 at 11:16:00 AM PST 

Anonymous Anonymous
had this to say:

What an amazing garden!

Hi, from Michele's.

Friday, January 6, 2006 at 11:19:00 AM PST 

had this to say:

I am SO ready to move west -- I can't talk my family into it

Friday, January 6, 2006 at 12:16:00 PM PST 

had this to say:

Oh, I love those euphorbias. I wish I could grow then in the east, but it's a house plant here, not an outdoor plant. But we had some growing in our yard and a kid, and I loved them. Almost as much as I loved our camelias and birds of paradise, both of which are wishful thinking around here. Sob.

I hope you find good homes for the arms. If they could be safely shipped to my state and I could deal with a houseplant (heck, I've got two now and although both are surviving well, I'm an OUTDOOR gardener), I'd be a foster mom in a heartbeat.

michele sent me.

Friday, January 6, 2006 at 2:00:00 PM PST 

Anonymous Anonymous
had this to say:

Lovely garden, my dear. I have one cactus just like yours, although I didn't know its name and I keep "thinning" it out since I have seen how large and heavy they get... mother nature should keep her babies so that they can stand tall themselves! (so sorry about your cactus...)

Friday, January 6, 2006 at 2:01:00 PM PST 

had this to say:

Good luck with those impressive plants. I think sharing a bit of your garden with friends by gifting those fallen arms is a beautiful thing.

Here via Michele today.

Friday, January 6, 2006 at 2:14:00 PM PST 

had this to say:

I like the idea of giving the arms as cuttings to your friends..that's just too cool :-)


Friday, January 6, 2006 at 2:20:00 PM PST 

had this to say:

You must have quite a green thumb. I'm certain I'll never grow anything to be that large...including my children! ;-)

Michele sent me...

Friday, January 6, 2006 at 2:27:00 PM PST 

had this to say:

Now that is a very different garden to mine! It's fascinating how gardening is so dictated by the weather. I put up a picture of my garden pond recently, you've inspired me to look up some other garden pictures.
Have a good weekend.

Friday, January 6, 2006 at 3:09:00 PM PST 

had this to say:

I hope you can at least have some "babies" to keep if the poor giant can't be saved, here is hoping Mr Bruna can do something,
Michele sent me today.

Friday, January 6, 2006 at 3:15:00 PM PST 

had this to say:

LOL! I definitely need a weekend because I just realized I was here this morning! Oh well. Michele sent me back. :-)

Friday, January 6, 2006 at 3:23:00 PM PST 

Anonymous Anonymous
had this to say:

We definitely don't have anything like that here in Virginny! It's really beautiful. (Via Michele today)

Friday, January 6, 2006 at 3:26:00 PM PST 

Anonymous Anonymous
had this to say:

Oh my. Those plants are absolutely amazing. How I'd love to have a garden. Instead, I live in a pokey little flat in London and my 'garden' comprises four potplants by the front door and two indoor plants! ;)

PS> Michele sent me.

Friday, January 6, 2006 at 3:26:00 PM PST 

had this to say:

I missed last week's liar liar while I was in the hospital. When are you going to do another one?

Michele, but really!

Friday, January 6, 2006 at 6:03:00 PM PST 

had this to say:

Wow, you're a gardner extraordinaire!

Friday, January 6, 2006 at 7:48:00 PM PST 

had this to say:

very cool! michele sent me!

Friday, January 6, 2006 at 8:28:00 PM PST 

had this to say:

WOW, that's pretty amazing. I tend to KILL anything green so I have given up. Maybe someday I'll venture into the green world once again. hehe. MSM!

Friday, January 6, 2006 at 8:47:00 PM PST 

Anonymous Anonymous
had this to say:

Why do I know the name of the first plant I have no idea..
but its an African Milk tree..
Oy I am a plant geek..
over from the other Michele's

Friday, January 6, 2006 at 10:32:00 PM PST 

had this to say:

It's good that some of it can be saved, and that the arms can be planted and shared with others.
Michele sent me tonight, Naomi, but I am here everyday on my own.

Friday, January 6, 2006 at 10:43:00 PM PST 

Anonymous Anonymous
had this to say:

I still think your garden is beautiful..
Here via Michele again..

Sunday, January 8, 2006 at 12:53:00 AM PST 

had this to say:

again, having such a wide variety of cacti thriving amidst such surroundings speaks volumes of how well you take care of them and love them. would love to see them myslef one day. :)

Sunday, January 8, 2006 at 9:27:00 AM PST 

Anonymous Anonymous
had this to say:

Cantilevered houses are cool. Plants in memory of someone are nice, for you especially. ( I mean, me, I couldn't keep a plant alive to save my own life.)

Michele sent me.

Sunday, January 8, 2006 at 6:19:00 PM PST 

Anonymous Anonymous
had this to say:

Hey there, I'm just a retiree from Maryland cruising around the net and looking
for interesting blogs. Came across your blog and thought I 'd say hi. Good job.


perennial gardening

Tuesday, January 31, 2006 at 2:06:00 AM PST 

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