Thursday, October 25, 2007

The Answer


Years ago, when I was attending Utah State University, I had a neighbor that we'll call Matthias. He was a good, salt-of-the-earth kind of guy, and we were friends. The important thing about him as it relates to this blog post though is that he was kind of a tree fanatic. (I should make it clear right now that I use the term "tree fanatic" with admiration, rather than criticism) He drove a big old orange truck (which I loved because it reminded me of ice cream outings that I used to take with my Grandpa Corry back when I was a little girl) with a green "Trees are the Answer" bumper sticker on the back. Matthias graduated in Landscape Architecture, went somewhere to get a graduate degree in a related field, and now he's back here again, where he and his wife are once again my neighbors, and he owns a company called "Total Tree Care".

So, that's the end of that story, and now we move to a totally different story.

Remember back last spring when I was planting a bunch of things in our back patio area and I was so excited about all the great times that we'd have, sitting on the porch swing, enjoying the blooms, and eating the produce from my labor of love?

Well . . .

The garden turned out to be a little less successful than I had originally hoped. The hollyhocks (which were growing so nicely last spring) eventually got so completely out of control that I had to root the whole mess of them out, but not until they had spilled seeds throughout the ground. Suffice it to say that I expect to be waging "the hollyhock war" for a few years to come.

I planted snapdragons, but I must have weeded them when they came up (not recognizing them as actual plants or remembering that I'd planted them). That's my guess anyway--since I never saw a single snapdragon in our garden.
Our summer squash crop consisted of three measly squash, only one of which ever got big enough to eat, and even it never even made it to the dinner table, because by the time it did grow, Eric and I were so sick of eating the summer squash from the gardens of our friends and family that we had no desire to eat one our own. Here's a picture of our three lone squash-ettes:



However, I'm happy to say that there were a few successes in this years' garden experiment. We had fairly good success with our tomatoes. They were small tomatoes, but they were sweet, and the plants produced just the right amount (which I classify as "enough so you can eat all you want, but not so many that you feel you need to devote a day to the hot, sticky, messy job of bottling tomatoes").

And then, we had a surprise success. As I was watering the containers, I noticed this plant popping out of the ground. I hadn't planted anything in that particular container, and so I had no idea what it was. It grew rather slowly, but it was persistent, and it didn't look like a weed (or a snapdragon, apparently), and so I let it continue to live. I idly wondered from time to time what it might be, but never enough to really get serious about trying to identify it. It never flowered or produced any fruits or vegetables, and I eventually decided that it was some generic ornamental plant.

Until a couple of weeks ago, when I looked out the back window and saw that my mystery plant now had yellow leaves, rather than the green ones it had sported all throughout the spring and the summer. How exciting! I was thrilled to have my mystery solved! All this time, I had been wondering what had been growing out there, and as it turned out, the answer to my question had been right there on the back of Matthias' truck.


Now the question is . . . will our tree survive the winter?


I'm not planning on it, but really, wouldn't it be cool?

5 comments:

Jodi said...

What lovely tree! You should be very proud!

Bamamoma said...

Time to get Matthias over to identify - he used to teach "Woody Plants" at USU you know (or perhaps you didn't). So, no idea from whence it came? That is awesome! You MUST get this mystery solved for all our curiosity's sake.

Dishboy said...

Some years ago my much more gramatically correct brother-in-law showed me this particular bumper sticker and pointed out the horrible grammar used. The sticker should read either "Trees is the answer" or "Trees are the answers".

"Trees are the answer" is improper grammar, but apparently that is not nearly as important as a catchy tagline.

Charlotte said...

Oh Dishboy--the geek-ee-ness never ends, does it?

;-)

BTW, I'm assuming this brother-in-law of yours is also a brother-in-law of mine?

Dishboy said...

Yup that's the one.

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