Lilac’s Thinking – 2014

One of the first posts on this blog was of a lilac bud about ready to burst forth.  It was posted on March 16th 2013.  In that post I promised to keep track of that plant from year to year.  Here’s a post making good on that promise.  I’m not sure what this tells about the difference between last year and this if anything.  But over time, perhaps a story will emerge.  Both pictures were taken on March 16th.  The first in 2013 and the second in 2014.

As I sit creating this post the weather forecast calls for dropping temperatures into the 20s with 1-2 inches of snow on the way. Yesterday was beautiful with highs in the mid 50s and humidity in the low 50s. Good burn weather.

Lilac bud on west side of house.

Lilac bud on west side of house. 3-16-13


Lilac on west side of house. 3-16-14

Lilac bud on west side of house. 3-16-14

Mei Ling Hom – Dit Dit Dash

The current artist-in-residence at Bernheim is Mei Ling Hom. Her web page is HERE.  She’s currently working on a sculpture that will be set up in the Edible Garden along a sweeping walkway that goes from the arbor to the raised growing beds.  It involves creating around 50 individual “dits” and “dahs” that make up Morse Code. Each “dit” will be filled with soil and planted with a lavender plant.  Each “dah” will be planted with a row of European garlic.  The roots of the plants will be inoculated with Arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi which will form a relationship with the plant that, in theory, will allow the plants to grow better than they would without the fungi.  As the sculptural piece rots over time they will leave the soil beneath them in better shape than before.  This concept of regenerative design is part of the larger garden design considerations.  Here’s some pictures of the pieces in production.  I’ll post pictures of the sculpture in place later.  Mei Ling’s partner, Dave, is instrument in all of this happening.
Meiling - Creating a dit
Dave and Meiling working 3-11-14

Meiling - dit and dah

Bud watching 2014

As is my custom (actually addiction) I’ve got my eyes on a short list of plants and vistas that I follow closely in the spring.  Here’s two photos of the buds on two of my index trees.  Both are at Bernheim.  The first is a butternut (Juglans cineria) and the second is an Ohio buckeye (Aesculus glabra).  I take frequent pictures of both of these as I track the timing of their development each year. These pictures were taken on 3-14-14.

Juglans cineria 3-14-14 (Bernheim)

Juglans cineria 3-14-14 (Bernheim)


Aesculus glabra 3-14-14 (Bernheim)

Aesculus glabra 3-14-14 (Bernheim)