a selection of zea support roots fro comparison...from top to bottom...zea mays ( also known as "corn in a bucket " )...the extravagantly tiered support roots of northern tepehuan teosinte...the utilitarian roots of zea mays parvaglumis...and some enginered industrial support roots in the cornfield by the supermarket.
out back the corn in a bucket ( first photo ) is producing ( second )...however not nearly as robustly as its industrial cousins...it is providing a habitat for the praying mantis in the third photo so it is functional...the seedless grapes ( fourth and fifth ) have found the trellis and have firmly attached themselves with tendrils ( sixth through eighth )...no amount of cajoling or insistence on my part could get them to do this...they acted on their own...human intervention in the lives of plants has it limits..at least they did not spurn the trellis...simply adapted it to their purposes in their own good time...the walking onions have "walked " ( ninth ) and the aerial bulbs are looking for the soil ( tenth )...hoping for a self planted crop of onions next season...finally the ramp seed are beginning to mature with a quickening pace ( eleventh )...i harvested twenty-one more today ( twelfth )...some i will plant...some i will share...some i will freeze for future use.
i was out in pulaski county indiana again yesterday and beans are a specialty there ( first photo )..the bi-polar monoculture is alive and well there ans you can see by the transition between the two ( along with a power plant and its emissions in the background ) in the second photo...those fields went on fro miles along inidana 10 and 35( third and fourth ) with space to ensile ( and advertise ) it all along the way ( fifth through eighth )...closer to hem the field by the supermarket is producing much like its rural cousins and there is a sea of male flowers ( ninth )...the row on the outside that developed in the shade of the biomass in the berm is still producing only one ear per stalk ( tenth and eleventh ) although the yield of the three in the eleventh photo may have more to do with the fact they they are so physically proximate than with shade...from the top the filed presents a vista of unbroken flowers and green ( twelfth )...a look at the underside of the field show that to be illusory...lots of bare ground ripe for wind erosion...that goes for the miles of fields in pulaski county as well...no til ( which is, at least , what the field by the supermarket is ) has its distinct advantages it's true...it still is no proof against erosion.
there is always movement in the yard...but sometimes it is barely discernible...there is a need to pay attention...to be native to the yard and it's not always a simple thing to do...changes can be subtle ( and i was never very good with subtle ) to the point of being overlooked...i am not an extraordinarily gifted gardener but i do pay very close attention to a number of plants and plant families i have become attached to...i notice changes in those at least...the corn in a bucket project is moving along ( first photo )..the stalks are all showing male flowers ( second ) and the female flowers have appeared on the ears ( third) soon enough there will be kernels...the teosinte has deployed many male flowers:
however there are no females to be seen...a waiting game is being played...across the yard the stems feeding some of the potato fuits have died back ( fourth ) signaling the time to harvest has come...they are in a paper bag now softening prior to being processed...there will be more on that along with the processing of their cousins the carolina horse nettle fruits later...shifting back to teosinte, it is doing well however it is not nearly as tall as it was last season...it has been an odd summer...alternately very wet or dry...hot or cool...and, perhaps, the oscillations have the plants perturbed...still they are fine( fifth ) and i threw something in to provide scale ( sixth )...there will be a loud whoop when the first teosinte silks emerge...stay tuned.
took a run out to the community garden after work to do some watering and have a look around and got a reminder that as you move from macro to micro specific detail can be disturbing...the asparagus( first photo ) is robust and producing a few berries ( second ) which are ripening well...i am looking forward to asparagus from seed...down the row some cobb lee potatoes are blooming ( third ) and there are potato fruits in the garden ( fourth ) in the garden...the jersualem artichokes ate also doing well ( fifth ) and are back to blooming ( sixth )...more seed hopefully...the shattered teosinte ( seventh ) is still showing how resilient and determined plant life can be...we may see actual leaves yet...finally the last four photos are the disturbing part i was on about...the odd spider that has been lurking in the jerusalem artichoke blooms has had its patience rewarded with a kill...looks like a bee to me...and it was stil feeding when i stumbled on it...camera shy ( it rarely would budge outside the flower petals before ) it went out of its way to avoid the lens, scurrying around the back of the flower...and resolutely taking dinner along...i am pleased, at times, to be part of the macro element of the garden...
wandering around the back yard i can see we are definitely headed for autumn...i see a nascent ear in the corn in a bucket ( first photo )...which is one sign...the nasturtiums are blooming away as is their wont ( second 0 and producing seeds ( third on the left along with ramp seeds and potato fruits...more on that in a second here )...the first ramp seeds are in ( fourth ) you can compare their seed structures with the onion ( fifth )...the sixth photo is onion seed on the left and ramp seed on the right...not a perfect match but close...there are potato fruits on the vine ( seventh ) however i found four on the ground ( eighth ) and brought them in to "soften" in a paper bag ( much like ripening a green tomato...traits run in families )...this started me thinking about the carolina horse nettle fruits i bagged in july and which were pretty soft when i last checked...so i got a couple out ( ninth ) and threw in a potato fruit for scale )( tenth ) and then cut one open ( eleventh )...they strongly resemble cut open potato fruits ( twelfth, a photo from 2015 ) and the seeds are very similar ( horse nettle thirteenth and potato [again from 2015] fourteenth )...they process was, perhaps unremarkably the same, the air reeked of solanine...my hands itched...and those two small fruits produced approximately one hundred and forty seeds...common elements of both fruits..i have more horse nettle fruits and when the potato fruits i have brought in we will be doing a side by side comaprison...give it a few weeks.
an industrial worker and university student (everyone needs a hobby...my hobbies have evolved and, to keep things straight, i have left my formal student career behind for reasons that are too detailed to delve into here...continuing to be a student of life however and not adverse to learning...stasis is death ) sliding down the back side of middle age...a social loner with collectivist leanings...explain that.