Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Running Cedar...

For the longest time, the words “ground cover” were a little distasteful to me. I mean, they didn’t make me physically sick or anything like that; they merely left me with an uncomfortable feeling. You have to understand that just about only the ground cover I ever saw was ivy. (Oh, and acres of ice plant.) Masses of ugly ivy, planted only because it grew and nobody had to do anything with it. I never liked ivy. That has changed a little, but more on that some other time.

In exploring the property after we moved here, I found, in the woods, a plant covering the ground that I liked so much that I couldn’t possibly call it a ground cover. Running Cedar is a native plant and it is very happy in my woods. It gradually keeps spreading and I think it is so charming. It quietly goes about its business of growing. There is one large colony covering a hilly place and new plants show up every so often in other parts of the woods.

In the fall, it “blooms,” but those are actually cones called strobili that spread spores. In reading a little about it, I discovered that Running Cedar is nearly impossible to transplant. Which explains why, when I gave my brother and sister-in-law some, I never later saw it growing on their property. So, guys, it’s not your fault.

It is evergreen and I love seeing it. It somehow seems to be a happy plant. And imagine how many small critters it must provide shelter for. Snakes and beetles and frogs and…. You’ll think of my woods in a whole different light next time you go out there for a walk, never knowing what might be lurking under my Running Cedar.

Have a beautiful day!

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