I profess to be a gardener but, to be honest, I may know a lot about a few plants but I know nothing about a lot of them. In my garden, I can tell you who gave me every plant, but I often forget the common names of them, and absolutely never bothered to take the time to learn their Latin names.
Recently, I was in a new garden trying to decide which plants I wanted to pilfer and bring home, but had absolutely no idea what I was looking at. It was early spring and nothing was in bloom and all were unfamiliar to me. It was frustrating to be so ignorant after all these years. Thankfully, the internet exists and I found a really useful free app which identifies plants. It is called Seek by INaturalist.
The app works for mammals, insects and birds, as well as for plants. I have been quite entertained lately taking random pictures of animals, bugs and flowers in the garden to reveal their identities.
Just about all of this year’s vegetable selection has finally been planted in the garden. Easily two weeks later than ever before. I swore I wouldn’t plant more than 16 tomatoes this year but I might have planted just a few more. There are twenty-two. Still fewer than a few years ago when I grew from seed for the first time and I had forty eight!!!!! We will also have peas, garlic, beets, beans, brussels sprouts, dill cucumbers, sweet cucumbers, carrots, spinach and lettuce. I am constantly having to remind myself that there are just the two of us living here and we prefer flowers to vegetables.
After already planting six pumpkins, I still have nine unsold and after planting twelve assorted peppers, I still have nine unsold. We may well be living on pumpkin spice muffins next winter and everyone is likely getting green pepper jelly for Christmas ’cause I can’t just throw the plants out!
I am not going to let my complete lack of formal horticultural knowledge stop me from my attempts to grow plants from seeds and cuttings. So what if I don’t know the Latin names for my plants, or whether a particular rose is a Tea Rose or a Hybrid. Neither Dylan, nor the Beatles or even Mark Knopfler
can read music