Thursday, April 19, 2012



One thing I love about having a garden are the surprises, the fun surprises. Not the aphid kind, which we had earlier this spring, probably as a result of a mild winter, but anyway. I mean the surprise of finding volunteer plants or plants that have reseeded themselves. At the end of a growing season, we tend to allow plants go to seed. This creates food for birds and then in the spring we find little plants popping up, that we didn't have to put there. They have naturalized. This spring there are a number of young penstemon plants popping up around the large mother plant. Likely we will let them get a little bigger and transplant them. Since plants often naturalize in places where we may not want them to stay, we have to edit. The african daisies are a plant that we always have to do this with, because they are such profuse seeders.

This spring we've also noticed marigolds and parsley popping up, which we will also relocate. Hollyhocks also weave their way in among our vegetables. Last year we transplanted some but they didn't fare well. So this year we will leave them where they are, in among lettuce rows and next to the tulips, and so forth. Such is our natural garden, and we like it that way.

What is popping up in your garden?

penstemon at left

1 comment:

  1. last year i got a ton of mystery volunteer cherry tomato plants (i think from tomato seeds in my compost). i always get volunteer lettuce at my community garden because i let it go to seed at the end of the summer. if it comes back this year (haven't checked over there yet) i think this will be the fourth year on the same lettuce! because it comes up so early in the season, i always end up just planting everything else around it. i love the natural/wild garden look!