Wednesday, November 09, 2005

Hens in a Stump

The word has gotten round my workplace that I am a gardening nut. Last week, one of my former coworkers (she was transferred to another department) brought me a bag full of Sempervivum (Hens and Chicks). As she handed them to me, she insisted that they could only be grown in a strawberry pot and seemed concerned that I didn’t have one. At the last moment, I thought she might take the bag back, but she let me have it after dire warnings about overwatering and planting in ordinary pots.

Honestly, I have nothing against strawberry pots, but her dogmatic attitude inflamed my obstinate streak. I decided not to buy a strawberry pot just to be contrary. Instead, I planted the hens in my upturned stump.

The stump isn’t yet rotted enough to provide niches for the roots, so I helped it along with my cordless drill and a ¾” Irwin Speedbor drill bit. I drilled the holes (wiggling the drill a bit to get a larger hole) and inserted the umbilicus of each little hen. I didn’t add soil or water, but I probably should.

I’m not sure if these will survive living in the stump. It could be to dry, cold, or shady. If they do establish and multiply, however, my stump will be simply charming. I’ll keep y’all updated. Maybe I’ll start a new trend of growing Hens and Chicks in pieces of old wood instead of in the current moss wreaths.


Anonymous Tracy said...

Just wanted to say, after looking at your "wish list" that I have seeds of sweet pea vine and foxglove that I'd be willing to send you, if you're interested.

Just let me know and I'd be happy to send them along.

Love your "stump" too!

11:19 AM  
Blogger Zoey said...

I think they will grow just fine in the stump. I have quite a few on pieces of driftwood. I did not put any soil on it..just what was clinging to the plants. Good luck with yours!

3:32 PM  
Blogger Tami said...

I think it will look really cool when it fills in. I grew another type of succulent in a hollowed out peice of drifttwood, did just fine until I got sidetracked one summer and forgot to water.

7:06 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

OUr hens always did fine out in willow grove...did you mix lots of sand in with thme? and we planted them in metal pots and driftwood we found on the beach...

7:48 PM  
Blogger Kasmira said...

Thanks for the offer! Once again, I need to update my wish list because I already bought sweet pea seeds. I'm a shopaholic.
I sowed foxglove seeds this fall and will winter-sow some also. I was hoping to find full grown plants somewhere, but I doubt that will happen. :)

5:22 AM  
Blogger Jenn said...

Tuck a bit of compost in there and they will be happy.

They do prefer a few hours of sun a day, but I've got some planted in high shade and they do fine.

7:47 AM  
Blogger amanda said...

Our hens and chicks survived the front bed digup for the new water line, so I'm sure that they'll be fine in your stump!

4:36 PM  
Blogger OldRoses said...

I love your stump garden! What a great idea.

2:25 AM  

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