Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Pretty picture: NOID weed/wildflower, and an alley

You know how when you're thinking about buying a dog, all of a sudden you start noticing dogs all over the place? Or if you're thinking about redoing your kitchen, all of a sudden the infinite diversity of backsplashes suddenly reveals itself? Well, I'm going through that kind of thing now with roadside weeds. Or wildflowers. Whichever they are. Holy crap, guys, they're everywhere. And there are so many different kinds of them.

This is from the 24th. We had perfect weather: windy, overcast, high of sixty-nine degrees (21ÂșC). If it'd been a little cooler and drizzling, I would have been in heaven. (I have weird tastes in weather.) So the husband and I went out driving around for something or another, and wound up on muddy dirt roads south of town, and I saw this.

It may or may not be particularly special, but it was certainly new. And then eventually we went down to Washington, where there appeared to be a fiddling contest of some kind in the town square (which we did not investigate, but there was some awfully vigorous high-volume fiddling going on. We didn't ask. Also some road construction on every street in the square simultaneously, which neither of us had ever seen a city do a whole downtown at once before. Never heard an explanation for that either.). Then we ate at a Mexican restaurant and saw an alley:

I don't know why a person would bother trying to grow plants in here. A three-foot-wide, dead-ended gap between two two-story buildings doesn't really seem like a promising spot to be gardening. But there it was. Impatiens and Hostas, mostly. And they were doing fine. Not that you could really see them.


Anonymous said...

I love that yellow wildflower. How pretty. The metal gate leading to that alley is interesting too, maybe that is the only growing space they have.

J said...

Could it be yellow sweetclover (Melilotus officinalis)? I wish I could see some leaves!

J said...

Oh, and here's a neat bit of information: the leaves have a vanilla-like odor when crushed, and dried can be used to flavor pastries, of all things (thanks to the Peterson Field Guide to Edible Wild Plants).

Were the leaves fragrant?

mr_subjunctive said...


Melilotus officinalis is possible, though the Wikipedia article's photos make it look like the flowers aren't arranged quite the same way. Same kind of flowers, though. Possibly a close relative?

I don't remember an odor, though it was windy enough I maybe wouldn't have noticed one.

perennial gardener:

It's certainly possible. If I remember right, it was between two buildings that were just off of the town square, so it might be that somebody has an upstairs apartment and that's their garden. Still pretty weird. I wonder if it's a pain to water.

MrBrownThumb said...

What a weird place for a garden, eh? You just reminded me of a "garden blogger" from Mexico city that commented on my blog last year. He/she had a blog all about weeds he/she found around the city. It was cool and made me want to do the same but I didn't have time this year.

Maybe next year?