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One of the "joys" of city gardening is that people sometimes take flowers.  I've become accustomed to losing a rose here or there; knowing this would happen is a large part of why I planted lilies and wildflowers between the sidewalk and the roses; little kids who don't know any better, and bigger kids who don't care, would have something easier (and less thorny) to grab, which would hopefully reduce the damage to the roses, which should be pruned carefully if one wants to bring a flower in, and not have the stem roughly yanked or twisted apart.

Several years back, I planted stargazer lilies, which have a large, bright, majenta and white bloom.  The first picture here is the first to bloom.  The plants send up one stalk a year, but unlike daylilies, the flowers last for weeks.  The first year, one flower.  The second, two or three.  This year there were at least a dozen flower buds on each plant, and I was very much looking forward to enjoying the flowers.  Also, because they flower after the other lilies, they help fill in a "hole" in the season, keeping the garden looking good (and keeping the city from thinking all I have is "weeds"). 

And round about now, they should be blooming.  But they're all gone.  Someone came along and cut every single plant, leaving me only leaves.

It's not the first time.  We have had people cut a dozen roses from a single bush, overnight, trimming all the new growth off the plant in the process.  And one time someone yanked a whole rosebush out of the ground.  But still, it's disheartening.

And it's not even something that one can realistically report to the police.  The value is less than a broken car window, which they will barely take a report on over the phone.  Why can't I have a nice garden-familiar, something big and scary and ready to send would-be flower thieves running?

In other garden news, the tomatoes are starting to ripen, and the hibiscus are starting to bloom.  The pretty copper-colored beetles are indeed eating holes in the leaves and even some of the flowers.  The various volunteer squash plants are doing well, with no sign of the dusty mold that usually covers them late in the summer; perhaps a blessing of how dry it's been.  I spent a little time placing supports for them, and winding their tendrils around until they caught.

It rained last night, and the wind or the rain knocked some of the cherry tomatoes and one ripe cayenne pepper to the ground.  Happily, I noticed before I stepped on them.




( 31 comments — Leave a comment )
Aug. 21st, 2009 02:54 am (UTC)
Your garden looks lush. Very fae. :)
Aug. 21st, 2009 04:29 am (UTC)
Thank You.
Aug. 21st, 2009 03:04 am (UTC)
Lovely. A motion-sensitive floodlight would probably do the trick.
Aug. 21st, 2009 04:38 am (UTC)

I'm more partial to befriending a sneaky garden gnome, or perhaps a troll.

Or Turing, the AI from Donna Adams' SF mysteries, with little periscope cameras and control of the hoses. Soaking the culprits might have an effect. Or posting their theiving faces on You Tube. Hmmm...Turing could probably ensure that their friends, bosses, schoolmates, and parents all got e-mailed links to the video...
(no subject) - mdlbear - Aug. 21st, 2009 06:41 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - wyld_dandelyon - Aug. 21st, 2009 08:24 pm (UTC) - Expand
Aug. 21st, 2009 04:46 am (UTC)
"Good fences make good neighbors." Robert Frost - but where I live, a good fence will give $50 for a late-model laptop.

Still, the city isn't so bad. In the country, gardeners have other problems - I once saw a family of deer in my sister's neighbor's garden in North Boulder, CO, quietly chewing up the flowers. in the front yard.

I had a lily just like that one in 2005 - I had a nice garden for a while - between weeds, squirrels and me forgetting to water, it didn't last very long.
Aug. 21st, 2009 05:54 am (UTC)
Hard to weed through a fence!

I suspect I'd rather have deer. Though being in the city lets my kid go to a great school.
Aug. 21st, 2009 07:36 am (UTC)
I wouldn't mind the occassional loss but yep, you are right when you put in all the hard work to have someone selfishly take it all or damage the plant doing it. There isn't the level of respect for hard work and other people's property that there was once (saying that it wasn't All Perfect in "the old days" either). It's mostly why our edibles and flowers are in the back. It's still accessible (no lock on the gate that leads to the street) but people don't usually go back there and with neighbors on either side it cuts down people randomly going into the yard.

I did plant some thornless blackberry on the chickenwire fence between us and our back neighbors. I figure the brambles will cover the chickenwire and then we can both have fresh berries (which are REALLY EXPENSIVE here). I've got a tropical passionfruit but it hasn't done anything (too cold in my area) so I'm thinking about taking it out and putting a few more berries in. Or I might just leave it and put another berry or 2 in near it.

Our "Blush Babe" self-fertilising dwarf apple trees should be in next month and my back neighbor wants me to pick one up for him too. He's got a feijoa tree as well (we do too) & he put in a pear tree last year too. Eventually maybe we'll be able to share fruit. :)
Aug. 21st, 2009 07:41 am (UTC)
Sharing fruit sounds pleasant.

Too many of the people in this neighborhood are transient, and have never had the opportunity to do things like garden, and so just don't get it, or for whatever other reasons, don't care. Good luck with all the fruit!
(no subject) - red_trillium - Aug. 21st, 2009 07:54 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - wyld_dandelyon - Aug. 21st, 2009 08:43 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - red_trillium - Aug. 21st, 2009 09:09 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - wyld_dandelyon - Aug. 21st, 2009 09:44 am (UTC) - Expand
Aug. 21st, 2009 08:38 am (UTC)
How frustrating!
The only thing I can think of is a nice thorny berberis hedge but it would probably get flattened before established and city gardens can't always afford to lose that much space.
I haven't had anything stolen from my garden but you get a lot of damage where kids take shortcut through.
I had a problem when I lived in Dawley with kids standing on the roof of a neighbour's shed to shout abuse every time I or Resident Giant went into the garden. The police couldn't help but I got photographs and showed to their landlord and he told the girl who lived there if she didn't keep her brothers and their friends off the roof she would be evicted because if the roof broke and they were injured the landlord could be liable.
Aug. 21st, 2009 08:45 am (UTC)
All of my roses do have thorns. I've heard kids complain because the flowers "stung" them.

Well, stay out of the flowers, then!

Good for you with the pictures.
(no subject) - red_trillium - Aug. 21st, 2009 09:10 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - core_opsis - Aug. 21st, 2009 10:48 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - wyld_dandelyon - Aug. 21st, 2009 11:00 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - core_opsis - Aug. 22nd, 2009 12:38 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - wyld_dandelyon - Aug. 22nd, 2009 08:02 pm (UTC) - Expand
Aug. 21st, 2009 06:56 pm (UTC)
Oh, that's SO AWFUL! :( I'm so sorry.
Aug. 21st, 2009 08:30 pm (UTC)
Thanks. I wish there was something constructive I could do about it. Maybe I should make another "shame on you" sign...
(no subject) - miintikwa - Aug. 21st, 2009 08:39 pm (UTC) - Expand
Aug. 21st, 2009 08:30 pm (UTC)
So sorry to hear about the purloined flowers! Stargazer lilies are my all-time favorite flower; I had them as a prominent part of my wedding bouquet, and yours are *lovely*.

Would there be any point in posting a politely worded, laminated (to better withstand the weather) sign, requesting passers-by to "please feel free to appreciate the beauty of these flowers - and leave them here for others to do likewise"? Just a thought. Or maybe some solar-powered motion-sensor lighting?
Aug. 21st, 2009 09:35 pm (UTC)
I suspect "shame on you" would work better. In English and Spanish. I may think about motion-sensor lights, but right now I'm on unemployment...
(no subject) - cflute - Aug. 21st, 2009 09:46 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - wyld_dandelyon - Aug. 21st, 2009 10:39 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - wyld_dandelyon - Aug. 21st, 2009 09:42 pm (UTC) - Expand
Aug. 21st, 2009 09:47 pm (UTC)
Yay daughter! :-)
Aug. 21st, 2009 10:40 pm (UTC)
( 31 comments — Leave a comment )


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