Some people bring home strays. I bring home plants. I have a really difficult time passing by a plant that’s being discarded. If I see a plants on the sidewalk or side of the road or in the alley that have been discarded by a gardener who needed to thin things out, it’s Auntie K to the rescue. (Confession. I have passed by a few buckets of snow on the mountain.)
Last summer, my neighbor was committing what she called planticide. She thought she had WAY too many rudbeckia, so she was digging them up and leaving them on the sidewalk – to die. Luckily, I got there in time. I stuck them in pots with a little compost and gave them a little water. I used some of them in my garden and my friend, Dayna, found a home for the rest.
Betsy had 4 buckets of iris heading for the compost when I came for a visit last fall. I brought them home and wintered them over. Some didn’t even make it into the ground, but they all bloomed this year. Again, I kept a few, but when a neighbor admired them, I dug them up and gave her a few.
My friends know about my plant rescue habit and now sometimes even bring me things, including a rose (Rosa Magnifica) last fall that looked more dead than alive. I stuck it in a sunny spot and within a week, it was putting out new growth. Not everything makes it. I had a couple of pinks that looked okay for a week or so, and then bit the dust. But, most rescues do make it. And, I’ve gotten a lot of lovely additions to the garden through plant rescue, so, I don’t plan to stop anytime soon.