strange goings-on

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In all of the years that I have grown bearded iris (make that forever), I have never known them to produce pods like these. There were only two, each 3.5″ long and 4.25″ around the thickest part.

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Most of my Rosa glauca has formed these plummy hips, as expected.

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But what is this? Just one on a good-sized shrub, but I have no idea what to make of it.

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I planted two Stachys ‘Helen Von Stein’ for their lush foliage and reluctance to flower and get leggy. They took quite a hit in winter’s cold. One of them came back looking as lovely as ever.

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With foliage that makes you want to take off your clothes and roll in it.

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While plant number two seems to have reverted to old habits of throwing up a whole bunch of flower stalks.

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And while on the subject of same plants behaving differently, how about these castor beans? Can you even see the itty bitty one over to the left? Both seeds, started indoors, started out life identically. As you can see, they are just a few inches apart in the same bed, so conditions are the same. One continues to grow, while the other languishes. What’s up with that?

The garden is filled with mysteries…part of its charm. These are just a few of the ones that have me scratching my head. Bet some of you can set me straight…or at least share some of your own puzzlers. I’m all ears (not lambs’).

PS: go to comments, where Grace answers questions posed here.

9 thoughts on “strange goings-on

  1. Ricki, the weird puff ball on the rose is called “rose gall.” Google it and you’ll get all the info you need plus photos to confirm. It’s a natural occurrence. Kinda cool looking too, I think.

    As for the Lamb’s Ears, I think you’re right in that it reverted. Or at least the stems that are blooming are reverting. When plants start to revert you’re supposed to remove those parts so I would take all the blooming stalks down to the main plant and see what’s left. This might give Helen the strength she needs to make a comeback.

    The Master Gardener course comes in handy sometimes. :))

  2. Loree~So…your bean still looks like the one on the left?

    Grace~The Master Gardener course is especially handy when YOU have taken it and are kind enough to supply answers. “rose gall” sounds dire, but I agree it’s cute.

  3. Wendy~gall: an abnormal growth produced by an insect, bacterium or fungus on a plant…sounds icky, even if the face it shows the world is kinda cuddly/

  4. I get those galls on my Rosa glauca too, tons of them. I read that it is a type of wasp. I tried to track down info on whether they’re beneficial or pests but didn’t get very far. I saw recommendations to cut them off in fall, before they hatch in spring, but I don’t seem to have a wasp problem of any sort, so I leave them.

  5. Megan~Wasps, huh? So how come you have many galls and few wasps, while for us it is the reverse? Nature really IS weird! Our wasps don’t bother us unless we disturb them, but maybe I will cut off the gall after enjoying it the rest of the summer.

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