Saturday, April 21, 2012

in the weeds... poppies to kittens.


Merriam-Webster says a weed is (among other things):

1. a (1) : a plant that is not valued where it is growing and is usually of vigorous growth; especially : one that tends to overgrow or choke out more desirable plants (2) : a weedy growth of plants

b : an aquatic plant; especially : seaweed

2.a : an obnoxious growth, thing, or person
b : something like a weed in detrimental quality; especially : an animal unfit to breed from

Not sure I've ever heard 2a, calling an obnoxious person a weed. Ouch.

Glamor shot of yellow starthistle (from,
close-up of yellow starthistle, Centaurea solstitialis. Photo by Peggy Greb.)
In California, this is a HEINOUS weed. Archenemy.

I still remember the moment my mom taught me what a weed was.

We were driving down the street on a sunny day,
and she said "a weed is a plant that somebody doesn't want."


I thought it was particular plants. Or grasses by the road. Or, something.

Not just whatever Joe Random doesn't want.

I think the reason I remember this so vividly is because of what she did next.

She pointed to this HUGE, glorious oak tree that dwarfed our passing car,
and said "Even that could be a weed, if someone didn't want it."


An entire TREE could be a weed?!?

My little mind was blown. =)

Anyhow, that definition has served me well over the years,
and many of the folks answering this quiz TOTALLY got it. =)


There are other definitions, but I like this one 'cause implicit is that it's TOTALLY a judgement call. Depends.

Why did I post California poppy pics on my weed quiz?

Photo I took in "The Year of the Poppy" 2009.
My retinas were FRIED by the end of that day.

In some other countries, and different parts of the U.S., California poppies are a weed.

They are NOT native there, and due to their ability to thrive in disturbed areas and in Mediterranean climates, and their introductions because of their popularity, they've proliferated.

In Chile, they do SO well, scientists are still trying to figure it out. They're FREAKY large and successful there. Wiki's got lots more for poppy perusal at California poppy.

Speaking of weed(ing): Howzyurdirt?

Been KINDA starting to do gardening-y things.

To collect data on the soil in my plots, I got this FUN chemistry kit.

Psyched to test my various plots and see what they hold... 
first I'm gonna call my mom, though, since she was a chemist,
and ask a few questions. =)

COOL, GREEN way to start plants.

I will NOT buy peat 'cause that's using a natural resource that takes 100s and 100s of years to form and holds a LOT of carbon. No thanks. Not on MY carbon footprint. =)

So, saw this pic on Pinterest, and I thought it was a great idea...

Photo from

So, I've been collecting eggshells,

learning as I go (fm rt. to left) how to crack the egg to preserve most of the shell. =)

It's JUST such a genius idea, I can hardly stand it.

And so symbolically apt!

However, be warned, it does NOT stand up to long-limbed,
borderline-hyper people who tend to fling their arms about.
Or cats.

So, above is my 1st dozen, re-constituted
after accidentally swatting the thing
to the ground & taking some losses.

Weeds, or adorable kittens?

This is a passel of kitties, found at a work site, that have been subsequently rescued:

Rescusing these weedy creatures:
1. helps preserve native wildlife at that site (incl. endangered and threatened species),
2. renders these kitties get warm, dry, safe, well fed, pest-free, and adored,
3. and is making their (sundry) new owners deelighted. They are ALL spoken for.

 So, it's a win win win.

K. That's it.

Happy weekend and happy spring or fall, 
depending (once again!!) on where you are.




  1. That poppy field photo is amazing. And yes, I imagine it could just about fry the eyes.

    Glad the kitties got homes. So cute!

  2. I just came across this quote and thought of your post - sorry for the delay - "A weed is a plant that has mastered every survival skill except for learning how to grow in rows." Attributed to Doug Larson.

  3. What a warm fuzzy feeling that you have homed those tiny kittens! And the mother? They look so young.


Cool people write inside rectangles....