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Not By Design

Sometimes plants have minds of their own.

Love-in-a-Mist. (marasl / pixabay)

No matter how carefully I plan my garden beds many nice surprises occur, showing that sometimes plants have minds of their own.

For example, last year I sowed a packet of larkspur seeds in a space that abuts the sidewalk. I thought it was just blank space, but imagine my surprise last May when the larkspur plants came up as well as a lot of self-sown feverfew. In June it made a perfect picture: the little white daisy blooms of the feverfew interspersed with the slender blue larkspur flower wands.

Also, in my herb bed the cilantro, as often happens, flowered fast because of really hot weather. Low and behold, I saw small blue flowers near the white feathery cilantro blossoms. It was Nigella that had self-sown.

A common name for Nigella is love-in-a-mist. It has fine, threadlike leaves giving it an airy look, which was perfect with the dainty cilantro blossoms. Nigella is a genus of 18 species of annual plants, and the flowers are pastel colors.

Nigella damascena ‘Miss Jeckyll’ likes moist, well-drained soil and sun. Capsules containing the seeds offer many promises of more plants next year.

The seeds of Nigella sativa are sometimes used as a spice.

Moya Andrews

, originally from Queensland, Australia, served as Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs and Dean of the Faculties at Indiana University until 2004. In the same year, Moya began hosting Focus on Flowers for WFIU. In addition, Moya does interviews for Profiles, is a member of the Bloomington Hospital Board, and authored Perennials Short and Tall from Indiana University Press.

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