Whoever is ripping off aeoniums is thorough.  My first awareness of the trend came when Jeong-Hyeon told me that someone had raided her garden, leaving truncated arms.  It was shocking but, I surmised, an anomaly; her garden of succulents is so sensational I feel like stealing it, too.  But then a few days later I noticed that the aeoniums in the neighborhood garden at the end of the block were stubs, ditto the ones at the Yoga Center.  Friday I was out in the remote Richmond and gone, cut to the ground was the pie-sized one in the planter by Georgia’s front door.

Tom tells me that florists are selling aeoniums nowadays so maybe that’s where they’re ending up.  Or maybe somebody just hates aeoniums, and has decided to rid the world of them, like the lunatic who has been killing trees in Golden Gate Park. I know, it’s not rational, but when has that mattered?  A few weeks ago a large section of the rose garden was decimated.  Hate makes its own logic.

I don’t believe it, not aeoniums.  Nobody could take offense to those tidy, unassertive rosettes.  It’s not hate, but some mutant form of love, if that’s a consolation.  I don’t think it is to Jeong-Hyeon.

Today’s quiz: aeonium has all 5 vowels, none repeated.  Name two other well-known plants that also do.


8 responses to “PILLAGE, NOT TILLAGE

  1. I’m one of those with limited vocabulary and even more limited knowledge of the nomenclature of flora and fauna. I’m hope you’re not going to leave us hanging here too much longer. What are the other two names using all five vowels?

  2. So, I was out walking my dog in the arroyo behind the house this morning, deep in thought about the poser you posted recently, when I had two sudden revelations. The first—eureka!—is that one common plant using all five vowels in its spelling is euphorbia. The other—oops!—is that I had lost my dog. We’ve had a wet late summer, and the grasses and weeds in the arroyo are knee-high. There is a faint path, which I assumed the dog was following, but when I turned to check on him, he was nowhere to be seen. However, after ten minutes of scouting around, I found hin before the coyotes did. All in all, it’s been a good morning so far, and I’m just getting started. But I haven’t a clue about the second common plant using all five vowels in its spelling. Perhaps one of your horde of readers will provide the answer?

    • Louis! You win the sweepstakes! Congratulations. Oops, I forgot. You have to get both answers to the question. Clues to come. Glad you found your dog before the coyotes did.

  3. There’s also the Irish variant of a well-known staple, to wit: o’petunia.

    I hope I’m not the only silly person reading your blog regularly and that some of your other readers will join in the fun.

  4. Of course, sequoia! Hope your mood improves as the day advances.

  5. Great blog commenting device. Look at the literary green-thumbs scurrying out from under electronic hedges to show off their vocabulary! Fantastic!

  6. Polly told me today that there is a chatter with the ‘Bernal Heights Mothers Group’ that many of their succulents have been stolen lately. This thing is getting big!

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