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Re: Four-o-clocks, was Japanese Beetles

  • To: Multiple recipients of list <iris-l@rt66.com>
  • Subject: Re: Four-o-clocks, was Japanese Beetles
  • From: Patricia Wenham <prw@televar.com>
  • Date: Sat, 15 Feb 1997 10:57:59 -0700 (MST)

J. Michael, Celia or Ben Storey wrote:
> >Maybe the beetles die after days of horrible pain...but I never saw any dead
> >ones on the ground around the 4 0'clocks.  But the beetles literally cover
> >the plants.  Clarence Mahan in VA
> Just for the record, I have never seen any dead insects of any kind around
> my four-o-clocks, but two columbines planted near them died mysteriously
> last summer. You don't think ...?
>  One time, I was sitting in the den reading Molly Price's iris book when I
> caught just the hinted sound of a quiet sort of commotion against the side
> of the house in the dark, a subtle susurrant *presence* like no rustling
> ever made by any living creature. Setting the book aside, I went to peer
> out into the dark. What I could make out among the fitful moon-cast shadows
> seemed in order. The four-o-clocks were standing up in their bed
> nonchalantly, a little closer to the house than they had been before, I
> thought. But just as quickly as it came, that nonsense notion slipped my
> mind. I closed the door and went back to my book and eventually fell asleep
> over Price's bloom-time charts.
> But, in the morning the four-o-clocks were all tipped over at odd angles,
> as though they'd been yanked out of the ground and hastily replanted. Even
> more mysteriously, when I dug the tubers in the fall to transplant the
> whole bed further back from the house, the tubers appeared hideously
> engorged, like monster overgrown yams each one of which would have been big
> enough to serve as sarcophagus to a ... to a vole.
> I think we should all be very careful around these "Miracles of Peru." How
> much do we really know about Peru and what goes on there?
> celia
> storey@aristotle.net  USDA Zone 7b
> Little Rock, Arkansas ... where the sun is melting what little remains of
> Thursday's seven inches (7!) of snowman snow.


What a tale!  Do you have children or grandchildren?  Are you a teacher? 
If not, children in Little Rock are missing a great opportunity to be 
exposed to an almost extinct art, that of storytelling.  I loved it too, 
thank you for sharing.
Patti <prw@televar.com>
Omak, WA where we still have almost a foot of snow and where we rarely 
get six inches of snow all winter!  USDA zone 5

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