Greetings, dear readers.
This is a good season to take the time for an afternoon wander. A day or two ago my walk yielded a new discovery. The area I live in is fairly rural, off a two-lane through second growth woods grown up in and around old farmsteads. The top of the hill used to host a decrepit chicken barn years ago that finally fell in on itself. The old farm chimney lasted longer. Along with the little reminders of their homes, the previous inhabitants left a landscape dotted with naturalized garden plants. Profusions of daffodils and asiatic lilies grow exuberantly in large patches. A few tiny grape hyacinths. Wildly blue irises in the middle of nowhere.
And, where I’d never seen them before, I found these:
These are grass lilies, Ornithogalum umbellatum, also called Star-of-Bethlehem and nap-at-noon. I’ve never noticed them before, though they’ve probably been around at least a few seasons.
There were several plants on this patch of steep roadside, teasing me with both their loveliness and their inaccessibility. I had to clamber around behind a shed and then lean out over the slope while fighting off blackberry canes to snap the image. In trying to identify them I learned that they are related to another spring lovely, the asparagus, known more for flavor than good looks, and that they are escapees, garden plants native to Europe and Africa. Like other imported plants, they apparently can make pests of themselves, though I cannot imagine being offended by a lawn of white stars suddenly springing up out of nowhere.
It’s hard not to be charmed by a plant that brings it’s own crown to the party.
Readers, I hope spring is providing sweet surprises where you are. I am grateful you are here and I welcome your comments. Wishing you well and safe!