Sunday, June 19, 2011

Plant volunteers in the garden

“Birds do it, bees do it Even educated fleas do it Lets do it”, let's fall in Robert’s Tropical Paradise Garden. Cole Porter was referring to something else entirely. I am referring to the multitude of seedlings growing in my garden that I did not plant. I have groundcovers, flowers, wildflowers, weeds, shrubs and even trees popping up all over the place. The reason is due to the fertile soil I have built up, the large amount of mulched areas and wild life that is attracted to my garden.
Birds feast on the stalks of berries from the Schefflera trees in other neighbor’s gardens. Then they come to my garden, take a leisurely cleansing in one of the bird baths, have some lunch at the bird feeders and drop some seeds as they fly off from my bird day spa. The Scheffleras pop up at various locations. Some I transplant and grow as bonsai from time to time. The Schefflera arboricola lend themselves much better than the large ones, but the large ones are what the birds like to drop in my garden.

Squirrels feast from the feeders as well, climb up and down the trees and bury oak seedlings. One by the fence grew and grew. I wanted to pot it up and replant in at one of the nursing homes I do Horticulture Therapy at but never got around to it. Hence chain saw surgery was in order.
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Sometimes the plant volunteer is quite welcome. I do not mind the milkweeds popping up since they attract the monarch butterflies. An occasional Crossandra gives a burst of orange color. Small Everglades tomatoes tend to start growing among shrubs and under the ground cover of small trees. If I catch them soon enough, I can transplant them to a more beneficial location and reap the harvest for a few months.
White birds of paradise also are germinating around the garden as well. They get huge, so will have to repot those as well.