25 June 2007


I celebrated the solstice by ignoring a variety of garden chores and buying more plants. The object of the trip was a rare species Impatiens: I ended with 3 Impatiens and 10 or so other plants, including a 12' shrub that I seriously have no room for. The Impatiens were a reasonable purchase, however, as the little space I do have is in the shade. If you doubt my "taste" (or at least my taste for the exotic), I urge you to check out the species on Mr. Impatiens's website: there's a lot more going on in this genus than you'll find at Home Depot.

I. niamniamensis by van swearigen
The plant that "spurred" me to get off my ass is called I. niamniamensis, the species name derived from a derogatory term for the Azande people of central Africa that (onomatopoeically) refers to their alleged (and totally undocumented) cannibalism.

Some people undoubtedly deplore the survival of epithets like this, but I think their retention is a fitting memorial to colonialism and the taxonomy that accompanied it. Seriously, check out the 1911 Brittanica.

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Blogger Ayse said...

Ah, yes, Annie's impatiens. I am terribly tempted by them, but know I would just kill them on account of not being home these days. It's that terrible not-enough-shade and too-little-water combo.

I went by Annie's on the 21st, myself, and came home with a tree dahlia, among the few dozen plants that forced themselves on me (mostly hellebores, those little hussies). I planted the dahlia sort of randomly, because how to you even decide where to plant a totally vertical semi-tropical tree? This is what comes of going to a nursery without a real solid plan in mind. And a minder.

6/26/2007 2:19 AM  
Blogger alizinha said...

Thanks for that 1911 Encyclopedia link. Had no idea I could find that on the web--definitely want to explore that further for plenty of unintentional hilarity.

6/26/2007 8:42 AM  
Blogger mmw said...

Yeah, unintentional hilarity, and -- often -- better info than wikipedia.

Don't worry, that Dahlia will die back every winter (I think) before it gets out of hand, meaning taler than 20 feet. And some of those Impatiens take a fair amount of sun, allegedly, once you get your irrigation going.

6/26/2007 11:22 AM  
Blogger chuck b. said...

I really ought to prioritize a visit to Annie's Annuals.

6/28/2007 1:23 AM  
Blogger lisa said...

Thanks for this post! I sowed impatiens balfourii just this year, because I already enjoy sucess with the "jewelweed" variety, and never realized another color was available! Now you introduced me to another strain of "virulent impatiens collecteria"! ;-)

6/28/2007 3:20 PM  
Blogger chuck b. said...

Just noticed Theodore Payne has some calochortus seeds for sale. FYI.

Calochortus catalinae $10.00

Calochortus clavatus $10.00

Calochortus kennedyi $10.00

Calochortus venustus $10.00

Calochortus weedii weedii $10.00

C. weedii weedii!!

7/02/2007 11:40 PM  

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