HELEN LANG: Telling blooming good news

Late-flowering plants surprise erstwhile garden columnist

To start out on a happy note, M. McGovern called to say she has crab apples that need picking, and they are free.

They make a beautiful, tasty jelly. Her phone number is 250-652-5699.

It’s a miracle. I still don’t quite believe my eyes, that my hibiscus in the west-facing window keeps on blooming.

Well, it had produced a long branch, spoiling its shape, so, using my secateurs, I cut it off just before a leaf node and put the cut piece in a pitcher of water on the kitchen counter.

One leaf turned yellow and died and I feared I was going to lose the whole thing. But when I lifted it out two days ago, to my amazement, there were tiny roots sprouting and it seems I may have another hibiscus in the offing.

I’ll leave it a bit longer and then put the cutting in some fresh soil, leaving it where it appears to be happy and simply work around it until it seems to have rooted for sure.

This is crazy. For one thing, I had no rooting hormone to dip it in. It just sat on the counter with no attention and the light was very poor and yet there it is, making new roots. Yippee, hurray for nature! It never ceases to amaze me.

Also, Joan Marsh called to tell me that the Auxiliary to the Saanich Peninsula Hospital is holding its bazaar this year on Nov. 19 and it is always a dandy.

Helen Lang has been the Peninsula News Review’s garden columnist for more than 25 years.