Sunday, April 08, 2007

A Miracle Ponytail

I don't know how to put more than four pix on a post, so I'm going to break this up a lot, and hope you'll bear with me. I mean, there's an end point to it all, and SURELY you didn't think only four pix would do when talking up ponytail palms, right?

pepektheassassin (My Uncle Pepek's Journal) is a wonder. She's a great poet. Great. If you like poetry, go check out her Poetry Thursday (PT) work. She's published scads of poems, won all kinds of awards. And published a book about writing poetry, and a prose book too, Chrysalis, about her time surviving cancer.

A bug-lover like me doesn't miss a title like that. I heard excellent reviews of it when it was published, but I still haven't read it. Sometimes I save up my dessert...I want to get everything she's ever written, and I know I could find used copies cheap - but I'm saving my mad money so I can buy them all brand new. I do that sometimes with authors I really really like. In her case, there's an added impetus: I want to pack them all up and send them off to her, return postage included, in the hopes that if I ask real nice maybe she'll autograph them for me and send them back home.

I got a plan, here. Sneaky, huh? heh!

When I first stumbled across her blog, I was particularly intrigued by the word, *pepek.* See, it looked familiar to me.

I checked with Walter. Yup. It's Czech.

As it turns out, she doesn't actually speak Czech.

But you see, all these things made me fall into her blog like stepping off the edge of a waterfall straight into a rainbow.

Then, of course, she had the good sense to marry a wonderful man. Who himself drove...a big truck. AND! Has not one not two but 5 stents in his heart. Not that I'm happy to hear about someone else's heart trouble, mind you. It's just that our marriages are so similar in enough ways, it kind of throws me. Either one of us could have married some rich big shot, okay? Take my word for it. Instead we married men who had brains and sense and loved us, and were not so schemingly ambitious that they would lose their sense of integrity.

Her talents are so strong in so many areas - writing, photography, art, acting, and more, I've no doubt - that this is a true renaissance woman. Besides being highly gifted and intelligent, she's made up of genuine kindness and compassion and great funny humor.

Plus! PLUS! She likes my ponytail palm. And my title for the iguana post.

I adore ponytails. They aren't palms at all, they're in the lily family. There are maybe 20 or so species. Of course, I want to collect them all.

So far I have a regular one (Beaucarnea recurvata) and a spiky ponytail (B. stricta). It looks like a punk hairdo. This is nice, because I love weird looking plants.

Ponytails are in a group of plants - not necessarily related - called caudiciform. Or, "elephant's foot." The base of the plant gets large, swollen, sometimes with fissured bark. Certain people think this looks neat, and they buy them and grow them and so forth.

So I've included some foot shots here.

The spiky ponytail is actually Walter's. He spotted it as we were plant shopping several years ago, and it's the first plant he ever asked for. The only one, really. Naturally I jumped all over that.

It's done nothing but grow ever since.

Click the last pic. See the little tiny pups on the base? Usually they die off. Sometimes they grow into branches. Often, you can cut them off and sprout them, get an instant baby plant. That's good, because growing them from seed is slow. I had some seedlings of several different ponytail species, but sorry to say, they were another Hurricane Wilma loss. I'll get more.


Joyce Ellen Davis said...

Woo Hoo! Thanks for all the kind words! Ah, though my husband has seven stents (he already had two when they put in the last five). Still thinking about the pony tail picture book, too! (Pumk hairdo and all!)

You're sounding better--hope you are feeling better, too.

Easter was fun, but I've dyed and eaten enough eggs to float and then sink a battleship. I wrecked my back carrying in groceries saturday night, so I limped around like Quasimodo all day Sunday, managed to fix dinner and hide eggs, but went to bed and let the others pick up and clean up. Oh, we got a webcam last week (our son in MN got one as well) so we hooked up (in a good way) and visited via the computer--a nice family get-together for far-away kids--now if we could get the OR son to get a erb cam....but it was fun to chat and see the grandkids, etc.

Heck, I'll send you a copy of the Willy book, free -- I have about a million. Just let me know where!

k said...

Oh my lord! SEVEN?!? I was wondering if I should fact-check that with you first, then I thought, Naw...surely not more.

famous last words!

If you were dying Easter eggs I bet that means you had some adorable little ones around. You're lucky you had some dishwashing etc. assistance there. If you have to yorp around like Quasimodo, at least you had little cuties to cheer you, and big ones to help. That's always good. I'm sorry you threw your back out at a time like that, though. Drat. AND ouch.

Oh, I want a webcam! Imagine if I could have turned it on my little caterpillars. I bet Bookworm would be good with one, too. I bet she'd think up really neat ways to put it to use.

And Woo Hoo back atcha! Whee! My first book from you, oh I am tickled pink! Snail mail addy to follow, post haste.