Dangerous Gardening
0 comment Sunday, September 21, 2014 |
When I first started to research plants for the Wump-Garden, I was dismayed to find that many of the plants I really admire are too poisonous to have about - hellebore is absolutely beautiful, very toxic. I have avoided planting onions in anything other than pots as I've already had my son mistake the bluebells as onions as he tried to hand these to me. I have explained to him we only grow what we're going to eat in pots, and everything else is not to eat at all unless I say, but still, it's a reminder I have to be careful.
Because things are equally complicated due to having a dog who eats raw foods (and grazes regularly on grass and leaves like a goat, I kid you not) I've had to be very careful with what manages to get into my garden - the convulvus isn't just an irritating weed, but is dangerous as Ludo could quite easily eat enough of it to kill herself. I actually suspect the first year we lived here she did manage to eat a fair bit of it as she spent a week being very ill. I've therefore banned the planting of bulbs or anything with poisonous foliage anywhere she could get it - and that means even the tomato and potato plants and cuttings have had to be disposed of very carefully.
However, sprog is learning what is safe, and what is just for looking at. He wears his gloves at all times when gardening and he doesn't eat anything unless I okay it. Ludo is, sadly, going to be moving on, but it does mean I don't have to worry quite so much about her digging up bulbs and eating them. So I'm now turning my attention to possibilities in the garden which I didn't think was all that safe before.
Now this doesn't mean I'll be filling the garden with belladonna, but things which I had originally written off as just being too much of a risk - and which people erroneously think of as being harmless - are now being considered. Namely, I'm eyeing certain bulbs for spring colour along the raised wood levels of the garden. I don't really care much for daffodils, but I have always adored tulips, and the few I've found as volunteers in the front garden caught sprog's attention this spring and he was captivated. This is impetus for me to maybe give a go by planting some this year - especially if they can handle our climate and don't need lifting every year. I'm so desperate for colour in springtime, so some tulips would really fit the bill, and would be a great excuse to get out in the garden again.
Some things however are just too dangerous - lillies for example are fatal to cats, even their pollen, and the sheer ratio of felines in the area means I really do not want to be planting any lillies anywhere. I've removed all the holly we've had in the garden as the berries are just too intriguing to sprog - he may mind me now when it comes to what is good to eat and what isn't, but I'd rather not take the risk when it comes to food items.
So I'm putting a thought, even while the riot of summer is upon me, to works for the fall. Mad I suppose, but I'll reap the spring rewards!