Quite a sad day today. We’ve had to have the palm tree removed. It didn’t show any recovery unfortunately, in fact if anything, it regressed as the canopy almost collapsed and the crown was tilting down, a sure sign of trouble. So I engaged a local guy with access to a high-lift crane mounted on a flat-bed to come and do the honors. They came with a couple of workers and had at it.
The problem was they expected it to be pulled out in a couple of hours. It actually took them more than double that time. What we discovered was that the tree was planted deep and its crown covered by at least a couple of feet, but what palms do apparently is simply sprout new roots! That meant that the guys were hacking not just at roots to free the tree, but hack away at solid trunk below the ground too. That took an awful lot of work, but in the end, its done. I’m not sure what to fill that new area with at the moment, but its early days yet.
I noticed that one of the palms, the favorite, was looking a bit sickly yesterday when driving home. That wasn’t that far from the truth, unfortunately. The gardener was fearful that it might have died, so I asked him to call the “palm tree surgeon” whom I always use to take care of them. He had a good look and suggested that the dead new growth in the centre of the palm was due to them being impacted due to the date bunches whose weight might have broken off the new growth at their roots. I’m not sure I would go with that explanation, but I’ll go with it at the moment.
The remedy, he suggested, was to cut off all the centre new fronds and just wait. Hoping for the best.
Here are some more shots I took this morning.
Wishing you a fantastic Friday.
Update – Sat 23 Jun 2012
Unfortunately more bad news. The palm tree surgeon came over and cut the offending centre dead fronds only to find rot has set in, together with termites which have eaten away the core. He’s not very hopeful that it will survive but suggested we check it again in a couple of weeks if it lasts that long and take it from there. Here’s what we found:
I’ll start looking for a crane and crew to come and pluck it out of its place. Better be ready…
It’s almost the hight of summer here in Bahrain, but with some water, a lot of plants do thrive. Okay, green is the predominent colour at this time of year, but the textures and hues are still breathtaking. Take the time to enjoy life… thank me later!
I love these unassuming plants. They take over the area they’re planted in, and even when not in flower, their tightly packed stalks, texture and colors of their leaves are enough to make any garden proud. But when they do flower – and they do that all too briefly – they truly shine.
Look how gorgeous and deep that yellow is. And that’s without any photoshopping too!
I bought this caper several years ago from one of the Bahrain International Garden Shows, I think it was the 2006 or thereabouts. I left it in a medium-sized pot and it did well for a while. But like with everything else, time caught up with it and I thought it had died and being lazy (with a copious measure of hope) left it there.
I confess that after a while I gave it no further mind but fully remember its majesty when it did flower in its younger years. I further confess that as the cats started using the planter by the front door as a latrine – abhorrent beings they are – I resolved to move the plant and plonk it in the position it occupies now in order to prevent those infernal felines from doing their business there. My success in that department was good, but imagine the amplification of that feeling once I saw that the dry twig actually sprouted some very healthy looking leaves!
Now, just this morning, I notice this lovely flower – a day or so old and past its prime to be sure – yet, it serves as an excellent indication of the health of this lovely plant, especially when taken with the second bud to grace it too.
I am rather happy that the Caper has not only survived, but out of necessity, also found what seems to be its perfect place in my garden.
I so look forward to it thriving for some time to come.
It’s really strange that when you observe a garden, or any other space for that matter, and you are used to that particular view, you not only get to take it for granted but your mind disappears some detail and you never really appreciate it. However, I found that if you do frame it through the camera and take a picture, more often than not you would be pleasantly (or otherwise!) surprised. It’s almost as if the two-dimensional view – especially if done well – would make you see it for what it actually is, in all of it’s glory.
Consider this for instance. It’s a view I pass several times a day without giving it much thought. In fact, I didn’t think it as “lovely” as it obviously appears here:
Isn’t this a picture fit for a gardening magazine?
Looking at it now and noticing the beauty of the “tear drop” in the middle; the depth that the Ixora on the left leads to the lovely purple Datura flowers and then onto the bed of Calendulas and onward to the rose bushes below the French windows. Then we notice the gorgeous framing offered by the two plumerias, going through to the two Cassia Fistulas and then at the very back, at the wall, we see the passion fruit climber in the middle and the plentiful flowering of the Oleander is just.. well, beautiful!
And then just imagine this space a few weeks from now once the plumerias are fully clothed and the fistulas have shed theirs leaves and replaced them with new growth, and you will be once again pleasantly surprised.
All of this in the arid climate of Bahrain? Yes, indeed it is. As I’ve said in the previous article you can indeed grow just about anything in this lovely country, but for a short while until the scorching sun put an end to this particular enjoyment and forcibly transfer your attention to the most heat tolerant plants; namely the palms, plumerias and the cacti.
But let’s not dwell on that. Here. Enjoy this view as well, taken a minutes of the one above and is what is available opposite. The one on top I call the Southern Garden; while the one you see below, obviously, is the Front, or even Northern garden.