Thursday, September 14, 2006

Morning Glory Trees in Chacala, Who Knew?

Morning Glory Tree (Opomoea arborescens)
Yesterday I had to make an early trip into the next town, Las Varas, to have some blood-work done. I caught the collectivo picking up the primary school kids who go to school in Las Varas, rather than walking to school in Chacala. There were 18 of us in the van. 8 kids and 10 adults. Nice and cozy.

The lab thing was very quick. No alcohol scrub (a useless tradition anyway, according to the latest findings), a painless needle stab, and no nonsense about a bandage over the needle hole. 200 pesos, about $18US for a diabetes Hca1 or whatever its called, a creatinine check, and two other panels related to my diabetes medication (liver function and something else). Pretty good price. I'm not very interested in the results, but my new English-speaking doctor is.

Anyway. I just missed the return collectivo, so I walked across the street and waited for a collectivo that passes the turn-off to Chacala. It came in a couple of minutes, and got out at the Crucero de Chacala. Then I waited at the corner for a couple of minutes, and Carmen, of Majahua, and three of the staff, came by and took me to the turn-off to the south end of Chacala. And then I walked home on the paved road.

Got a close look at the new plants filling in the ugly bare earth where the new town water line trench was dug about three months ago. Can't even tell now that there was ever a big ugly scar, except if you recognize the new plants are all plants that grow in recently disturbed soil.
The best part of my walk home was in front of Socorro's house. Socorro has a house full of family. Actually three houses all mixed together. And a stroke-disabled husband, a congenitally disabled adult son, three daughters (the youngest finishing high school) and a granddaughter and a grandson. She does laundry and the daughters work too. It's a great family, and I really like being around them. Socorro and her son and husband and I often walk up the paved road together in the early evening. They are headed up to visit their friend Maria, and I am headed home. It tends to be a very, very slow walk, and there's lots of joking and laughing.

Anyway..... There is a plant in front of their place that I had never heard of, or seen, before I came to Chacala. It's all over town. It's called the Morning Glory Tree (Ipomoea arborescens). Socorro's blossoms are lovely, large and white.

It's hard for me to imagine that my arch enemy weed in Zone 5, bindweed, (which we called Morning Glories) is in the same family at this beautiful tree. And maybe it's not. Maybe Morning Glory was just the local name for those indestructable vines.


Bound for Ceiba said...

Thanks for visiting my blog! Yours is very cool too, I love all the photos! The Morning Glory tree is fantastic, and coming from zone 4 myself, I can sympathize with distaste for the interloping, viney cousin...

Robert Brinkmann said...

Very cool tree! I have never heard of it...sometimes we get some of the exotics as landscape plants here, but I have not seen that one. I'll have to ask one of my plant expert friends. I also thought the gringa whatever plant from the other post was cool.

Gardener in Mexico said...

Robert: The plant in the photo is kind of scraggly, although with a little judicious pruning one could probably look pretty good. I am going to try to catch a blossom going to seed on that particular tree/shrub and see what happens. I could send (maybe not) you some seeds if you wanted to play around with them. Maybe that's not a good idea, on second thought.

Bound for Cieba. I don't miss the cold one bit, not even for a second. although I didn't mind it much when I lived up there. I did resent not being able to garden year round.

Kati said...

Hi, I stumbled upon your blog via Bob Brinkmann's. I'll be back to visit often. I loved the bit of Mexico I saw many years ago on a cruise of the western Caribbean. Loved Mexico, hated cruising life on board ship--too scheduled and "directed".

Robert Brinkmann said...

Thanks for thinking about saving the seeds. I don't think they would get through the customs. So, I'll admire from a distance. I forgot to ask my friend about the tree...getting forgetful!!