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Plantidote of the Day 2012-10-26

twig's picture

kangaroo paws


Kangaroo paws

One of my most favorite plants ever! Kangaroo paws are tough Australian imports with odd, fuzzy flowers that hummingbirds love. The plants can grow as high as 6 feet, making a beautiful hedge/boundary, especially since they bloom for months at a time.

Kangaroo paws are available in dazzling colors; you can see a few of them in the short slideshow at the bottom of this page. I actually chose the one above because it's the most subtle one I've ever run across. These plants like sun, good drainage, and moderate watering.

NOTE: Sorry there's no Plantidote round up today. High winds here are taking the internet down every few minutes, so it's hard to post anything that requires a lot of writing at the moment. But the round up will be back soon!


Readers, please send twig ( images and stories for the ongoing Plantidote of the Day series. In exchange, you'll win undying fame in the form of a hat tip! Plants growing in your garden, your house, or neighbor's yard, plants from the forest or farmers' market, plants you preserved, plants you prepared (wine; cider; tea; dried beans), plants you harvested (grains; chantrelles), plants you picked (flowers), plants you dried (herbs), plants you covet or hope to grow someday. Herbal remedies, propagation tips, new varieties, etc.. And if you can, include some solid detail about the plant, too -- a story, the genus and species, or where you got the seeds, or the recipe, or your grandmother gave it to you. Or challenge us with a "Name That Plant" mystery entry ... And please feel free to add corrections and additional information in the comments.

Click on the image for the full-size version. Click here to see the entire series.

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Submitted by YesMaybe on

Those are really trippy looking, and in different trippy-looking colors, too!

Alexa's picture
Submitted by Alexa on

image with us.

I'm going to keep this short, because I "believe" that I may have accidentally already commented on your post.

I'm thinking that I posted a comment on this beautiful plant earlier, in the wrong place. I jokingly mentioned to you that I could furnish you lots of wild bird pictures, if you should ever incorporate "bird watching" into your "Plantidote" post.

Or, maybe I got distracted right before I saved it, and it "disappeared." I hate it when that happens. LOL!

twig's picture
Submitted by twig on

Sorry about your comment disappearing :-( I don't know much about birds, but it would be so interesting to learn, like Insectidote.

I'd be more than happy to take you up on the bird offer. Or you could do them for Plantidote on your own, if you like. We are a bit short on material, since not a lot is in bloom at this time of year. Whatever works best for you is fine with me.

Submitted by lambert on

... would be awesome.

Especially if other birders got involved!

Alexa's picture
Submitted by Alexa on

rabbit feeder," not a knowledgeable "bird watcher."

Right now, I'm actually staying at a relative's home while she recuperates from surgery. I have a couple of feeders and a bird bath here, so I do see quite a few birds every day.

But, I can't help you with pictures, 'cause I don't have a 35 mm camera with a zoom lens (or whatever today's equivalent would be called). Nor, did I bring my photo scanner with me--just the laptop.

Heck, two days ago, when I wanted one of the dog's pictures as an avatar, I had to "take a picture of a picture" with my phone camera, then email it to the laptop. After fiddling around for what seemed an eternity, I finally managed to upload the image to a website. But, I don't think that would be plausible on a regular basis. LOL! (I thought I'd pull my hair out, before I finished the one upload.)

Seriously, I apologize for getting both of your hopes up. We enjoy the backyard birds immensely, but the only birds that I personally can identify are Cardinals, Jays, Woodpeckers, and Ground Doves. The rest I assume are "wrens" or "sparrows."

Here's the link to the picture of the picture that I took, so that you can see the quality. I doubt it would pass muster for the purpose of an actual blog posting.

And anyway, I would need to have the capacity to embed a bird image. And I don't have that.

A "Birdidote," or the incorporation of "bird watching" into Plantidote would be great fun, and a great idea! What is needed is a website like Flickr that has tons of bird pictures that can be uploaded.

I believe that I just found such a website:

However, not comfortable with giving my age and Date of Birth, which is required. What do you guys think? Doesn't that seem odd that they would require that info?

Know of any other websites that might have bird pictures to upload?

twig's picture
Submitted by twig on

Well done, Alexa! The birdviewing site is great, but yes, why do they need birthdate/age? Weird.

I feed birds and squirrels here, too, but have no idea what the birds are or how to photograph them. That must require some actual skill with a camera ;-) So I guess we'll make do with our flowers and plants, unless a bird lover steps up and offers some images and information. That would be awesome.

Alexa's picture
Submitted by Alexa on

the bird pictures. I have a couple of questions that I think that you can (hopefully) answer.

I may have been a bit hasty when I concluded that the camera I have, wouldn't work to take bird pictures. So, I'll check back with you tomorrow.

Alexa's picture
Submitted by Alexa on

I can do with my cell camera. [It would probably be a very good idea to "put out the call" to the entire community for bird pictures, though. I have no ideawhat success I'll have, if any.]

After our earlier discussion, I actually "Googled" my phone camera, and what do you know--it's fairly decent according to reviews. I've not only never used the camera (to speak of), I've retired this android phone (HTC Evo), and only use it as a PDA.

Anyway, long story short, the review displayed almost 30 pictures (taken by the reviewer) which were quite good. The reviewer admitted that you wouldn't want to throw away your Canon SLR, but considered it one of the best cell cameras he'd tested. We'll see. No harm in trying. I may not even get a good shot for a while. It's incredibly overcast here--I'll have to wait until we have a sunny day. And of course, the birds are definitely smaller in numbers now. It it's not exactly helpful that our temps will be as low as 28 degrees for several nights this week. But temps go up again by the end of next week.

We put out food 2-3 times daily, so we've got "regulars." It was a hoot this past spring. We had a "bunny" who would literally run up to me, while I was putting out the food. Like most rabbits, in several months, he moved on. It's not unusual for rabbits to become "partially" tame, but he was the first one that literally came running (like a dog) at dinnertime. LOL! [Actually, it worried me a bit, that he was so unafraid of humans.] Sorry, got a bit OT.

So, keep your fingers crossed. Remember, too--if I do manage to get a few pictures, there's a good chance that I won't even know what the bird is! LOL!

I'll let you know my progress in a week or two.