Teasel in Pasadena

It was a summer vacation up north. Redwood City and San Jose. We visited Las Pulgas,
the hills behind Santa Cruz, the bayside at Burlingame. We came across the
"musical thistle," a pineapple shaped cone that sang a scale when we ran a finger down
the dried cascade of spines. It took me 50 years to get seed for my own. Fuller's Teasel,
it's called. Manos, a cyberfriend from Redwood City, read a description I'd written,
knew where some grew in the hills above Redwood City, and mailed me several seed heads.
2006, Spring, I planted them and all but two plants died.
The heat, the chickens, the whoknows got them. Two thrived near last year's tomatoes.
Then one day in March, one rosette sent a spike into the air,
the spike branched, the cones developed, they bloomed. June 2007, I've now cut several,
wrapped them in newspaper, and catching the seed for 2009's crop.


rosette on left,
flowering spike

spike shot up

tiny seedheads

bees love it

flowers open
top to bottom

tiny seed ready to drop
seed on times
first seed drop

would you like
some teasel seed
from
Redwood City
via Pasadena?