Last year a bag of sweet potatoes started to sprout before I got around to eating them. They ended up as mulch in shaded area at the back of TESLI. Apparently they like Phoenix weather, as they have taken over. I keep having to pull them out of my shade garden and direct them towards the open space to the west.
I was surprised this morning, when I went to pull out a vine, that a couple little sprouts came up. Since the vines cover about 20 feet of ground I am curious how many pounds of potatoes are down there. I think of it as my disaster survival fund.
This is actually self-portrait #6. I have been trying to figure out how to capture the amazing swarm of honey and bumble bees that visit my weeds each morning as I sit on the porch and practice. Video was the way!
Amaranth is a prolific weed in Phoenix. It is easy to pull out when it is young, but once it goes to flower it is covered with stalks of prickly flower/seed heads. The bushes get about five to six feet tall with about the same diameter width. Weeding them once they are full grown means enduring scratches.
Despite the unpleasantness of dealing with mature amaranth, at TESLI some of the amaranth is left to seed because it supports the ecosystem. The video shows bees busily harvesting the pollen and the seeds are a welcome treat for the birds.
I think this is a facet of gardening that people miss out on. Many people are focused on production of a crop and/or the garden looking good. These are not bad choices, but imagine what is possible when you let nature do the work and you can enjoy the co-creation of a balanced ecosystem. Simple living is about increasing awareness in regards to what our choices create.