Den Rose, its protection from deer nibbling


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This is what I call the Den Rose in all its glory. It was planted by some of our predecessors on the Boggy Brae to climb up the Den (they might have called it the Sun Room). The Den had rotted by the time we moved onto the Boggy Brae and eventually we had a whole new structure built onto the original low base walls, one of which was extended along the edge of the southeast terrace and, at one time apparently, had had a lovely piece of mahogany as a ‘lid’ on the double brick wall. We never saw the mahogany.

Once the Den was rebuilt I guided the very vigorous growth of the Den Rose sideways and along the wall extension, with the above result.

Last year the Den roof needed repairs so I cut back the rose severely but, by this time, one or two of its shoots had rooted themselves at the bottom of the wall extension. I trimmed these back too and was looking forward to their flourishing this summer. Unfortunately the roe deer who think Boggy Brae garden belongs to them seemed to think I had trimmed the rose for their benefit so that new young shoots presented themselves at the top of the wall for their exclusive delectation.

Last evening Toad told me to come and look at the pair of deer who were eating “green stuff” growing out of the wall! Toad is not a gardener and could be described as what the Botanical Society of Britain and Ireland call “plant blind”. At any rate he had clearly forgotten about the glory of the Den Rose and didn’t recognise it. He just thought it was sweet of the deer to be so close and nibbling it 🙄

My point of view is that one can go off deer 😂

So, early this morning I devised an anti-deer-nibbling device over the top of the wall’s rose shoots.

Thale Cress and Corn Salad


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Thale Cress (Arabidopsis thaliana); flowers and basal leaf rosette:

Thale Cress (Arabidopsis thaliana) is competing with Corn Salad (the cultivated version of which is Lamb’s Lettuce I learned today), which so far had qualified as among the smallest Boggy Brae garden wildflowers. In normal circumstances Thale Cress apparently grows to between 5 and 50 cm tall. On Boggy Brae it has chosen to grow in the cracks between some ancient and crumbling concrete flags. The plant in the first picture is 3cm tall, those in the second 1cm. The flower in no.1 is 2mm across, same as those of Corn Salad.

According to Wikipedia, Thale Cress “is considered a weed [aka wildflower, say I] with a relatively short life cycle.” And here’s where it gets interesting: it “is a popular model organism in plant biology and genetics. For a complex multicellular eukaryote, Arabidopsis thaliana has a relatively small genome of approximately 135 megabase pairs. It was the first plant to have its genome sequenced, and is a popular tool for understanding the molecular biology of many plant traits, including flower development and light sensing.” So although it’s unexceptional in apprearance (third pic is of the basal leaf rosette of the 3cm plant), it makes up for that in importance to science.

Corn Salad meanwhile has three times as much vitamin C, Wiki claims, as lettuce. This is where I think yes, but, one lettuce leaf is something like ten times as big as an entire Corn Salad plant, certainly any that grow on Boggy Brae! It’s best to gather Corn Salad plants before they flower if you’re going to eat them, apparently.

9 April 2021 on Boggy Brae


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A whole flower of the dark pink primrose! Woohoo! Usually they are nibbled

Three pictures of Hairy Bittercress (Cardamine Hirsuta) showing identifying features such as (1)4 stamens & seed pods over-topping the flowers, (2)some hairs on leaves, (3)a somewhat wavy stem (just to confuse me!) and more hairy leaves.

Field Woodrush (Luzula campestris) season is beginning. These are such bright little plants as their flowers open.

A dandelion bursting out of its bud