Monday, April 28, 2008

Curiosity Gland Alert

Okay. Here's the shot of the Mystery Monster we discussed the other day. Good thang I remembered to haul the camera along yesterday so I could get this pic while the sun was shining. Today, by contrast, is foggy-misty-WET and I can't think of a single reason to wander out in it.

So. Anyhoo. Does the sight of MM, in all its glory, ring any recognition bells with any of you Coffee Mates? I hope so. Now that I know it's not what I thought it was, I'm slightly crazy to find out what it really is. The world will not end if I never find out. Of course it won't. But it won't end if I DO find out, either, so it's okay to tell me. Really. Go ahead. Feel free.

If you're still nervous, I'll see what I can do about getting you in the Witness Protection Program.

Or we could discuss the worth of bribes consisting of chocolate in one degree or another of quality and quantity. I figure if I'm going to allow myself to be corrupted, it's best to insist on the highest possible value. I could probably better attain that goal if I had more practice. Corruption is a double-edged sword, you know. For me to be the corruptee, there must be a corruptor. Or two or three. So you people have to do your part. Your reward would be in the satisfaction you get from doing a quality job.

And I'd share the chocolate.


Hmmm ... I should have done this earlier. Put in the closeup, I mean. Don't know if it will help but maybe it will give you a better idea about the leaves of the beast. Definitely not agave, Bill. Wolfie, I think you're close but not quite on the button. Bonnie, this climate is only "too cold" for folks in Texas. (grin) We have all kinds of southwestern species thriving here, including palm trees and the ubiquitous ice plant. John, you may be right -- and sexing penguins is probably easier than naming the mystery monster. At least there are only two choices, there.


The Old Guy said...

Looks like a giant agave to me. If so, you're in luck. You can prepare tequila from it.


John Bailey said...

I'd probably say, oh, it's a yucca. Like sexing penguins, only a yucca should know the difference. Either way, it's a stupendous bit of garden... :-)

The Old Guy said...

Or maybe a blue one.

Bonnie said...

Bet it is too cold and wet there for a yucca. The old guy may have found it.

Gonna share the tequila?

ryc: I don't have a picture of the wood rose yet. Too busy with outside shots.

Wolfie said...

Otay, miz dee, here's what I found out. The first is a link to a picture and short description, the next two are descriptions I ::ahem:: 'lifted' off a page called "The Yucca Page". I think your monster could easily be a variety of either of these.

Yucca flaccida: a small stemless clumping Yucca that spreads by underground stolons. It is distributed through the Appalachian Mountains of North America from North Carolina to Alabama. Being tolerant of cold, damp climates it is hardy in the UK. The margins of the lanceolate leaves produce long straight filaments. The lax outer leaves recurve and rest on the ground justifying the "flaccida" epiphet. The 6ft inflorescence carries clusters of creamy-white fragrant flowers.

Yucca filamentosa: a stemless clumping Yucca that spreads by underground stolons. The thin leaves are generally straight although some of the older leaves around the edge of the clump may recurve. The leaf margins carry numerous white curled filaments which catch the light, giving the species its epiphet. The inflorescence up to 15 ft high carries large white flowers well above the leaves. This cold-tolerant Yucca is naturally distributed on the SE coastal plains from New Jersey to Florida and widely cultivated in the USA as far north as Vermont and in Great Britain and Europe.

From the picture you posted, it doesn't look like there are filaments on the leaf margins, but I did find several examples of threadless varieties of the flaccid yucca. (what a name, eh? I wonder if viagra would help the poor thing?) ;)

Wolfie said...

Sorry - forgot to add that while most of the sites say the flaccid-leafed yucca is small, I found varieties up to 15 feet tall!

Now, about that chocolate...

~Sil in Corea said...

My grammie had a whole row of yucca plants that she brought back to Maine from Colorado (Park County, to be precise). Musta been too cold for them to spread; they just stood in place like good little soldiers. Well drained sandy soil and full morning sun have kept them going strong since 1930.