I see, I see, I see

August 4, 2010

When I heard the crack of thunder and saw that flash of lightning at 6:00 am this morning, I was thankful. Very few others in Chicagoland were.

Where others saw flooded roadways and flooded basements and flooded ponds, lakes and streams, I (very selfishly, I admit) saw my rain barrels filling up (they do work, but it’s not a sealed, perfect system yet – getting to that soon), saw my tomatoes being watered and saw a good soaking for everything I transplanted over the weekend.

I saw other things as well – the moose knocked over by the winds for the dozenth (at least) time. I keep standing him back up in the same spot and giving him a good shove into the ground. And the next time it rains, there he is again, the drunken sot, smashing the impatiens, under the eupatorium. Isn’t that the definition of insanity – doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results?

I saw an unexpected tomato plant, rising from the dying anathera along the pond edge. Not sure how that wound up there as it’s not a place I threw veggie peels in the winter. The dogs can get at that spot, which means Lucky would eat it and be sick. Griffey is much more discriminating, though no less disgusting, of an eater. It is too small to bloom and set fruit this year, so it will just be a bit of fun – a surprise from the gardening gods.

Another surprise. Sitting on the berm, there is a container with a spike that has grown beyond the bounds of reason. The container doesn’t drain well and with all the rain, water has sat in it all season long. Never knew that spikes could survive with their feet constantly in muck, almost like a pond plant. Well, it has survived and vigorously thrived. Learned something about spikes today.

The red hibiscus is unfurling, the petals unwinding from the bud. It is tattered already from its encounter with the storm, bedraggled and torn. They are dramatic flowers, the divas of opera with bright red lipstick and generous bosoms. These have been caught without an umbrella, hair soaked and falling, ill-tempered and indignant at the stupidity of their parasol-less lackeys.

After being so lately trimmed, the butterfly bush is back with a vengeance. While the spikes are more petite, they are more numerous as well, decorating the branches like Christmas ornaments.

A red pepper peeks from beneath green wet leaves.

The goldfinches let me take their picture.

That’s the best thing I’ve seen all day.

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