Saturday, May 3, 2008

Ouch! Lesson Learned the Hard Way!

After work today I stopped by the garden centers at Lowe's, Meijer's and Home Depot, mainly to look for lantana and Calibrachoa, (Million Bells). I was successful in finding lantana at Lowe's and the pink and purple calibrachoa at Meijer's. I still had the Lowe's gift card from January 25, and finally spent it today on three Knock Out roses, several lantana and red salvia.

I have grown so much from seed that I can't tell what some of the plants are anymore. I was moving some of them outside tonight and picked up this plant; as soon as it touched my skin I started stinging like I was being stung by bees. It actually left whelps on my arm and it really hurt. I'm thinking that it must be Stinging Nettle. I know I didn't plant it, but I also made a huge mistake and tried to cut corners on the planting medium this year. It wasn't sterile and I've not only had damping off disease but I've obviously got weeds too. Ouch! Another lesson learned the hard way!




The Swizzle zinnia that I grew from seed is not pretty like the mother plant. Another disappointment. Although I was warned that it might not be true to seed, I just had to try. Hopefully, I can find it again this year.



The petunias are blooming. Some have already been planted outside, and the rest will hopefully go out tomorrow.



The anise hyssop has really been neglected because it was never transplanted into a larger container.It is still beginning to bloom in spite of the poor treatment. I've enjoyed the licorice smell!

I've uncovered some of my winter sowing containers and I'm very happy to report that I have sprouts in every container except one. The only thing not successful was the lantana and I knew it was a long shot when I attempted it.

I'm hoping to have some breaks in the rain tomorrow to get some much needed planting done. It's pouring right now and I'm concerned about the young, exposed plants I have on the patio. Hopefully they will be all right.

22 comments:

ChrisND said...

I know what you mean about not using sterile planting medium for indoor sowing. I thought I had seedlings sprouting in record time. Well a few days later I saw the real seedlings and realized the others were weeds. I'm glad none were Stinging Nettle though.

We learn...maybe.

Frances, said...

Oh how awful, to be tenderly raising stinging nettle. But isn't there something good about that plant, a food source for a butterfly or something? What does the zinnia look like, is that a photo of the mother, or the daughter? It is lovely. Hope you get your seedlings taken care of.

Jayne said...

I had to laugh Robin when you said you planted so much you are not sure what all is coming up! :c) I wish I were as prolific with planting.

Ouch... stinging nettle....Did you sort of feel like a cow bird had left you a present? :c)

Lisa at Greenbow said...

Watch out for that nettle. That was a painful lesson.

Can't wait to see all your plants out in the garden. It will be so colorful.

It stopped raining here this morning. Good luck with your planting.

Melanie said...

I'll trade you some poison ivy seedlings for some stinging nettle. Ouch, luckily that's one weed we haven't been bothered with here.

Robin's Nesting Place said...

Chris, I had a lot of weeds growing in my winter sowing containers too. I wonder why weeds always grow faster?

Frances, the picture is of the one grown from seed, if you click on the link you can see the gorgeous "mother" plant.

Jayne, I need to do a better job of labeling, I thought for sure when I planted the seeds that I could remember. What was I thinking!

Lisa, I hope the rain will hold off, but it just might be too wet anyway. We got a lot of rain last night.

Melanie, no thank you! My poor neighbor helped clean up her elderly mother's garden and managed to get covered in poison ivy. I think this is my first time to ever encounter stinging nettle.

Gail said...

So sorry you were stung, twice...once by the stinging nettle and then to realize it wasn't what you hoped it would be...

I am still incredibly impressed by all the propagating you have done. I'm with Frances, is that the mother plant? It is a good looking flower.

The rain is torrential here...smashed beauties in the garden.

Robin's Nesting Place said...

Gail, that zinnia is the one I grew from seed. You can click on the link to see how amazing the mother plant was. I check this morning and so far my plants appear to be all right, just a little waterlogged.

Randy and Jamie said...

Robin,
Your photos are wonderful! Could that phlox possibly have more blooms on it, my goodness what a show!

arythrina said...

Yep - that definitely looks like nettle. You can have your revenge though, nettles are edible! If you grab the leaf from the top and crush the spines you can eat it! Very satisfying... I think maybe you can also make a soup out of it? And the cooking kills the spines? It's a spinach-y taste.

beckie said...

Robin, I almost didn't sow any seeds indoor this year as I have had bad luck in the past. But after seeing several others try, I decided I would only I would use the jiffy peat pellets and seed starting medium. It worked really well. No weeds or dampening off. And I found craft popsicle sticks to mark my plants with. I did get grass and weed seed in with my Violet soil though, so you just never know what you are getting.

ncmountainwoman said...

What misfortune to encounter the stinging nettle, one of the most aptly named plants I can think of. That thing really hurts!

There are lots of good things about the stinging nettle plant. It has been used for centuries for various medicinal purposes. Some of the benefits are real and some are imagined but herbal medicine proponents are making a fortune selling it.

mon@rch said...

Stinging Nettle . . . I learned that plant a long time ago and still have not learned my lesson! LOL . . . At least it only stings for a short while!

jodi said...

Sorry about the nettles, Robin, though let me tempt you with the benefits of nettles:

They're an important larval food for the red emporer butterfly;
they can be boiled and turned into a salve for taking the sting from nettle stings...
They can be cooked gently and eaten as a delicious potherb.

All these things might be useful knowledge if someone ever develops a Botanical Trivial Pursuit, right? :-)

Other than the nettles, things look just great, though!

Robin's Nesting Place said...

Jodi, I did a Google search and you're right. Nettle is larval food for the Tortoise Shell, Painted Lady, Question Mark, Red Admiral, Hop Merchant (or Comma)butterflies. Do I dare plant it in my yard? I certainly don't want this weed to spread, but I am trying to attract more butterflies to the garden. Hmmm...

Rick said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Rick said...

Your photo looks like stinging nettle to me. Growing up in Indiana we also called it "horse nettle" for some reason. I have no idea how or why it got that name, because horses don't eat it. As far as the benefits of the nettle plant, some time's one has to just say sorry, but will find other ways to help the beneficial insects! No nettle for me, thanks.
PS: Sorry about the earlier attempt. I tried to just edit my comment, but doesn't look like you can do that once published.

Sue Swift said...

Ah well - better stinging nettle than poison ivy :)
I'm surprised you weren't sure what it was. In Britain it springs up everywhere, and you learn to avoid it at a very early age. Is it less common where you are?

Bek said...

I never saw a stinging nettle here in Virginia. I already thought they don't exist here. They are everywhere in Austria. They really are painful, but taste very good.

Yolanda Elizabet said...

Stinging nettle is very ouchie but don't throw it away, wear your thickest gloves and put it in a corner of your garden as butterflies really like this plant and many lay their eggs on it.

I've sown much more than I did before too and thanks to you and Kylee this year I'm trying to grow Zinnias.

I hope your tender plants survived the rain!

garden girl said...

Robin, I'm glad I've never encountered stinging nettle (yet.) I think I'll study that photo so I'll recognize it before it gets me. It looks like another good reason to keep my gloves on, especially when I'm gardening for other people.

Anonymous said...

It is a stinging nettle. We have lots in the forest edges here in Oregon, but usually not something that grows in my urban Portland garden - that is until last year. I bought several bags of earthworm castings to spread under my plants - and was unhappy with it because there is a LOT of sand in it - and all last summer and even more this spring I have nettle seedlings EVERYWHERE. But there is some good news: It's easy to weed - just where gloves. It's good for those funny, achy nodes old people like me get on the upper joints of their fingers - Just pluck a spring, take a deep breath, and touch the nodes all over ( no, it doesn't really hurt that bad and it is SO worth it) Takes down the swelling for a few weeks and actually feels good once the sting wears off. Also there is a cure for the sting. Either Velvet Dock leaves or the leaves of touch-me-not (Jewel weed - Impatiens-something-or-other) The leaves rubbed in take the sting out right away. Lovely blog, I found yours from the Netherland's BLISS log. Love the beautiful photography. Bye for now.