Tiny Things, Seed and Weed.

There are plenty of seedlings in the garden this year, thanks to our recent rainfall.  For the past three years we've had few volunteer seedlings, and almost no weeds (there is a bright side to drought).  Seeds intentionally planted mostly shriveled up in the relentless dry heat.  This winter's rainfall changed that. 

I'm trying sweet onion seedlings this year.  A local nursery offers them, claims they are easy and that the crop is sweet.   Okay, we'll see.
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The onions will make an odd contrast to their winter companion in the veggie patch,  ornamental sweet peas, which are growing very well this cooler, moister winter.  Flowers in a few weeks. 
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After seeing wonderful performance from Hunnemannia fumariifolia (Mexican Tulip Poppy), I tossed seeds of it everywhere.  The seeds seem to require steady moisture to germinate--in those spots that have stayed moist through the too-long intervals between rainstorms, seedlings are appearing.  In the drier spots, not. 

Of course, if you are serious about seed germination, a seam in concrete is the best place.  Heat and moisture.  Hunnemannia fumariifolia seedling at the right,  the weedy invasive invader Brazilian Pepper, Schinus terebinthifolius at lower left.

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Dandelion, California poppy, Salvia discolor.
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In the weed department, four years after I removed the last Cercis tree, Cercis seedlings continue to sprout. 

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Plenty of milkweed seedlings for the Monarchs, though the rabbits are mowing them down.  Bad bunnies.
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The rabbits also mow the dandelions, though I wish they would finish the job.
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A few lavenders emerge here and there, but they are never as nicely shaped as the selections, so they get pulled once they get about a foot tall--in the meantime, I enjoy the scent.  
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A Gazillion seedlings of Scarlet Pimpernel weed, Anagallis arvensis.  Last year we went to a local tour garden and this was being grown as a cherished "native wildflower".  Ooooohhkaaay.  It was taking over.  It's trying to take over here, too. 
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Burclover, Medicago polymorpha.  I remember the round spiked seeds sticking to my socks when I was a kid playing on the lawn.  I've resented burclover ever since. 
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Some sort of mallow.  Malva parviflora, maybe.  Gets huge, like 6' tall if you let it.  I won't let it.  The orange Carex reseeds just a bit--that's one of last years seedlings that I placed on the slope. Not a weed, it's a gem. 
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Speaking of last years seedlings,  the Agave seedlings are still tiny, but the Aloe capitata seeds are growing very well, and most of them look fairly capitata-like.  Blooms are years away.  
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New Aloe seedlings this year:  I'm trying the seeds I got from Aloe deltoideodonta, which is in an isolated location, so I thought I might get pure seed, rather than a hybrid.  Seeds from this:
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 I am curious to see if any of the seedlings will have the marvelous green and white striping of the original.  Maybe?  Too soon to tell here, too. 
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And as to other tiny things, Mrs. Hummer, still on her nest.  More tiny things to come. 
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  1. Too fun-neeeeee. Yeah, hard to accept scarlet pimpernel as a treasured plant from the nursery. I'm surprised the bunnies eat milkweed because it is supposed to have a bad taste, alkaloid or something. Love that green-and-white stripe-y aloe! But I really want to know how your onions turn out. Will they bulb or not? Are they short day or long?

    1. It is the Yellow Granex, aka Vidalia (only if grown in Vidalia) aka Maui. Short Day. The seedlings came with instructions on how to grow them to bulb, (plant shallow!) so...I'm hoping.

      Yes I didn't think rabbits would go for milkweed. They are just doing it to annoy me because I got rid of all the delicious lawn.

  2. Seldom does weed seedlings get featured on blog, quite fascinating! Though not all of them are weeds of course and those are things to look forward as we enter a new growing season

  3. I enjoyed this! Seedlings are one of my favorite things about the garden, although most of yours aren't things that I see here.

    When I read "Burclover" I immediately thought "Bur-a-hobbit" :)

    1. Thanks! Bur-a-hobbit! Was the last movie any good? The first two disappointed me somewhat.

  4. Lots of seedlings, lots of promisses for summer. But those rabbits, they are a nuissance, I cannot get rid of them too.

  5. So much life bursting forth! I'm impressed with you being able to identify plants even when they're tiny seedlings. I only know a few: dandelion and California poppies, mainly because that's what I have. Too many California poppies in the wrong places :-(.

    I finally got an Aloe deltoideodonta. I love those stripes!

    1. The weed palette here is so limited I learned them all quickly. Didn't photograph a Eucalyptus globulus seedling because I pulled them all.

      Yes are not the stripes wonderful? A surprise how clean-looking that type stays--no spots, no burns, no marks. It's a gem.

  6. Seedlings are usually something to be filled with joy over – except weed seedlings. I suppose in your climate you have weeds growing all year? Over here they take a short break for about 6 weeks and then they get going again. Despite temperatures almost down to freezing the weeds are already sprouting in my garden but because I have bark mulch everywhere it is not a huge problem, just in some of my pots. Ivy seedlings are the bane of my life. I must be picking more than 1000 every year….they grow happily in bark mulch.

    1. Yikes, that is a lot of weeding! Ivy is bad here, but doesn't reseed much. It is just hard to get rid of because the roots go so deep. Our period of weed seedlings is relatively short, maybe 4 months, because it is so dry here for so long.

    2. I am lucky, with bark mulch everywhere ivy is just about the only weed that grows in the flowerbeds. I nip them when they are very small, they are easily pulled out with my long handled picker. I sit on my stool and pick them, one by one, a good few every time I am outside :-)

    3. Your garden is perfection, Helene, so I am hardly surprised at the effort you put into making it so.

      I'm very pro-mulch as well.

  7. Get those mallows early: their roots are on a journey to the center of the earth.

    1. Will do! They seem to go to seed here quite rapidly as well.

  8. Can't wait for our little seedling/plant swap! I check the garden carefully every day for new stuff.

  9. Rabbits! That's got to be a challenge. It would indeed be nice if the critters would help out with weeds instead of wreaking havoc. The raccoons and skunks in my garden have run amok through the area I planted with Calendula seeds so many times it'll be a miracle if anything survives to flower. However, I also have more volunteer seedlings this winter - the only trouble is I'm unsure whether some are friend or foe. I think (or maybe just hope) that some of my mystery seedlings may be Osteospermum - time will tell. Oddly, I haven't seen any Albizia seedlings despite a huge volume of fallen seedpods - I harbor the fear that they've learned how to hide themselves.

    1. Rodents! Grrr! You have enough to do without those A pair of red-shouldered hawks has taken up residence nearby--I'm hoping they are excellent (and lucky) hunters.

      Albizia--oh dear.


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