Saturday, June 28, 2014

Calendula collection

One of today's jobs was to collect calendula seed pods for Robert Llewellyn, who's doing a book on Seed Pods and is particularly eager (as in rabid) to photograph some calendula seed pods. I actually grew these calendulas just for Bob, and it has required me to be tremendously restrained to keep from deadheading them. (Remember, Nancy, you're growing these for the seed structures, not for the flowers.) It was actually a great relief today to be able to strip the plants of all the stems going to seed and pack them up for Bob. Here (on the windowsill) is what I'll deliver to Bob tomorrow. He'll turn just one of the seedheads in this collection into a work of art. In the meantime, I learned lots about calendulas. For one thing, their stems are incredibly sticky and, even as I type now, I can feel that stickiness on my fingers. This is actually a problem when you are collecting ripe seedheads, because the stems want to stick to each other and pull the seedheads apart. This is a great strategy for a plant--helps to disperse the seeds--but it is a problem when you're trying to deliver the perfect, intact, seedhead to a photographer.My strategy: pick lots of flowers and seed pods at various stages of maturity and, surely, Bob can find the perfect one in the mix.

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