Sunday, June 19, 2016

Into The Wild

My garden was not on the tour this year. It could have been. I think it looks better and has more interest than when it was two years ago. All it needed was a fresh mowing of the paths and it would be show ready.

As show ready as a wild cultivated garden can be, which in many ways is easier to accomplish than with a more traditional garden where weeds and mulch and deadheading for heaven's sake, all have to be tended to before show time.

I don't have weeds. I edit. I don't mulch. I chop and drop and let the leaves remain where they fall. Deadheading? You must be insane.

I puttered today. I walk the garden and the roadside vegetable garden tending to odds and ends, none of which would make the garden any more presentable.

I have been making more of an effort to give all the cultivated plants some elbow room. The Shredded Umbrella Leaf, Syneilesis acontifolia, is happy and growing, but still not as tall as I expected. It is only a bit taller than the Mayapple. It lasts much longer though. The Mayapple is already starting to fade away.

My biggest patch of Black Gamecock iris is having its best bloom ever. It is also crowding a path and needs a shovel stuck into it for some relocation. Both the sisters will be visiting next month. I could send some of this swamp iris south.

I wandered into the forest on the garden extension trail. The baby native Flame azalea I found in there while editing is having its first bloom. That's the whole thing for its first bloom.

The path dead ends at a huge rubbish pile I keep meaning to burn. It's halfway decomposed now. I got a notion and my loppers and stomped right over the pile chopping as I went to extend the path. The more I walk it, the more editing will get done. That pile may never get burned.

I came upon an obvious den underneath a big rock. Hmmm? What was living in there? Miss Collar is this your hideaway? I kept lopping seeing a pretty obvious trail beneath the tree saplings and blackberry canes until I came to a very open area under the saplings. Yikes. I found a bone yard with two skulls, assorted jaws, leg and hip bones.

I had to wonder. Is this Crawford's skull?  He went missing four years ago. It very well could be that long since I have been down there. There was definitely a carnivore dining on the slope twenty feet below my dung piles on a regular basis. That fact that it was so open, down to bare ground means it must be ongoing. That is too damn close.

An online comparison of a domestic cat skull to the one I found was inconclusive, but it sure is close. What was it?

I need to claim this space for the garden. What will I find when I extend the path further?

I need to order me some Clyde Redmond. I have a stream down there where Louisiana iris would be happy to grow if I keep enough sun down there.

The native Astilbe biternata or False Goat's Beard is in bloom. They are really hard to tell apart. The key is in the terminal leaflet.

It is time for the garden to expand further into the wild. I don't need a boneyard so close. An eviction is now on the list.


Barry said...

Havahart might help to put that critter into a long move, perchance a really "big sleep". I recently found at the forest's edge a few patches and shreds of white fur resembling that of a feral house cat that occasionally toured the back yard. I suspect a much larger feline-type critter caught up with her. I am loathe to investigate the blackberry jungle for possible skeletal remains.

Christopher C. NC said...

Barry I ID'd the skull this morning as a raccoon. The den could be from a groundhog. I have seen one down there and I know there is another burrow on a different face of this slope. It could also be fox. The whole thing is a blackberry jungle now which makes the editing process pretty unpleasant.

Sallysmom said...

Thank goodness it wasn't a cat. I had always hoped that Crawford just strolled on over to another house somewhere and took up residence. I know that is probably not what happened but better to think that than what may have really happened to him.

Christopher C. NC said...

Sallysmom I was sure glad it wasn't a cat skull. The other one is most likely an opossum. I'll try to ID it tonight.

Lola said...

Oh my.