Thursday, December 17, 2015
Day Seventeen of Blogging Challenge
And another really old one is a Hen and Chicks which we got from Dick's cousin, Bonnie who lives in Missouri.
We were visiting Cousin Bonnie (she always refers to herself by that) in the spring one year. She was busy thinning out her flower beds...Hen and Chicks are very prolific there and they regenerate like crazy so periodically, my non gardening friends, you have to thin them out by digging up about half of them so those left will continue to grow! Cousin Bonnie grabs a sack and starts filling it with the dug up Hens for us to take home to replant.
According to Cousin Bonnie, you can't kill them! You don't even need to take care in planting them! Just toss them on the ground and they will take root! Well, that may be true in the rich farmland in Missouri where the soil is truly black, but when we got them home, Dick did a little more than just tossing them on top of the ground! But even with a bit of TLC, good ol' Texas sun and clay earth was beginning to kill most of them off. Dick dug up o few and put them in pots to nurture them a little better and I have this ONE left!
For years, it did just fine but never reproduced! I was beginning to think it needed a mate but just last summer it began to push out babies! I'm very excited about that because this is a very old plant with a history. Dick and Cousin Bonnie were very close, born just weeks apart, growing up and living in nearby farming communities. Their families would get together at their Grandma Shirley's usually for Sunday dinner. And it was Grandma Shirley who had the Hen and Chicks which Bonnie had planted at her home. Grandma Shirley passed away over 25 years ago at age 102 and who knows where she had gotten her original Hen and Chicks! People didn't just buy plants from nurseries...they gave them away when they thinned out their flower beds! So it is hard to say how old this pretty little cactus really is!