1. Always a beauty. And now available in rainbow colors at a BigBox near you. What do you know about your Asian forget-me-nots. In the Garden, we are thinking these bear some bare handed caution for older, crankier, hands.

    • Thank you. In our experience we have never had any problems with our Forget-Me-Nots. In my wife’s gardening notes she has recorded that they contain pyrrolizidine alkaloids which can affect liver enzymes in humans. I don’t know it that comes from handling them or eating them – which we don’t.

      • On occasion, my understanding is that these alkaloids can be absorbed by both routes, and through milk products of animals who consume it. It is in combination with a suspected carcinogen that our thoughts go to protecting arthritic hands, as well as those affected by neruo-muscular complaints. However, because all plants are our friends, it seems unfair to malign anyone on suspicions alone. To discourage anyone on the threshold of the world with a flower is a Blue Meanie kind of attitude. It is a beautiful flower that has never been convicted of a crime. On the other hand, if an ounce of prevention is truly worth a pound of cure; then the most conservative of us all would be now cured. Permanently. This is the absurd symmetry of verbal equivalences. Not all things are like others things and some are not even always like themselves.

      • In our garden we’re happy just to have them bloom and spread. We keep a file on all of garden plants, wild or tamed- cautions printed in red as an ounce of prevention. However, likes the bears, coyotes, cougars, etc., they are part of our surroundings and we learn how to live with them.

      • No. I haven never heard of problems with this variety of forget me not. I was putting my electronic bloggers ear to the ground. Also, we’re looking for a used bear on Ebay. A few table scraps payment to keep smaller mammals from the Garden. Prefer a black bear, but will accept a young trainable griz. Garden is too small for cougar, however with parking lot roaming rights, this could work.

        Keeping a plants file is an admirable custom. It is unusual. My high school years were spent on the North end of the Kootenay (Lake) in a co-op farming community. Summers were spent with Doukhobor farming families. Among both these close to the land and well educated cultures, I do not recall plant catalogs, booklets or files. Is this a tradition in your family. May I ask who taught you to make plant files?

      • If we have any bears to spare I’ll send them your way.

        For many years I did gardening work, mainly for senior’s with mature gardens. Often after dividing plants I was able to bring them home to plant in our garden. It was then we started a card index of the plantings – who gave the plant to us, when, where planted, compatibility with other plants and all the characteristics of the plant. This was pre-Internet but we have a large collection of gardening books to help in our research. I more recently decided to photograph everything growing on our property to combine with our index card to put together as a book to pass on to our kids as a record. The book isn’t quite together yet though we have about 220 photographs and notations ready to go. Perhaps this year…!

  2. Thanks for putting us on the ‘Bear to Spare’ list. You probably get lots of requests. I am very much wishing to prepare a plants catalog. Combining snaps and watercolorings. I Would be feeling qualified with about 1,000 practice examples of each, first. Behind schedule, here. Hate to begin on the defensive, but this happens when one over promises and under delivers. When it comes to holding the line on the barbarians of time they say there is safety in numbers. Have you planned a whole book, before?

    • Well, I think if my wife and I live to 150 we will be pretty sure to have our book finished. Always something more interesting pops up like garden work/play. I have done a few online produced photo books – all pretty basic. The garden record will also be fairly simple though we haven’t quite settled on a final format. Even with the small number of entries we have it is beginning to get a bit cumbersome.

      • About a week ago, just before starting my daily horticultural therapy painting sessions, I was about to suggest you slap a little paint on the brush. Paint a portrait of each plant. You are an excellent plant portraitist. Following three paltry watercolorings, I feel I am about to learn to walk (I know how this feels, and: All over again. Again. And then for good luck, again with half a brain). Muse or no muse, even getting one’s brush out of the paintbox is heavy lifting.

      • Thanks for your kind presence. In the Healing Garden, we have enjoyed our Winter visits. Your daily presence has helped us find our path through the days when there is less light. Thank you again. — The Healing Garden gardener

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