My regular readers (thank you!) may remember that my daughter Ariel is an art major at UNC-Chapel Hill. One of her painting instructors last spring required each student to choose an overall theme for their works in the class. Ariel decided to paint her notion of what might happen if humans left earth and nature was allowed to take over. I liked all of her paintings, but these two are my favorites. (Sadly, my camera did not do them justice.)
Indeed, an interesting thing to ponder but a bit sobering as well. I found it even more frightening to imagine what might happen if nature took over while humans were still here. In fact, right here on my own front porch and the area around it, I have witnessed daily the horrors of such a scenario. A terrifying sight! An appalling spectacle! Yes, folks, you are about to see for yourself what happens when you allow to run amok MORNING GLORIES BENT ON WORLD DOMINATION!
(Yes, those are chimes. And yes, that is a bee. Beeware, bee!)
Even worse than this was what took place right at our own front door. I noticed a couple of months ago that there was a morning glory that had grown right up to the threshold.
“Ha, ha,” I said to Tom. “Look at that. I think that morning glory is trying to get into the house.”
And we both chuckled at the thought. No way THAT could happen since we have both a storm door AND a fairly tight front door with weatherstripping.
Pretty soon the morning glory started to put out flowers, and we’d smile and step over them as we came and went. We regarded our charming little door blossoms with fondness and affection. Sweet, pretty little purple flower.
And then, a couple of weeks ago, we came home, opened the storm door, and noticed that the morning glory had somehow snaked its way behind the storm door.
“Ha, ha,” I said to Tom. “Look at that. The morning glory got past the storm door.”
There were a few seconds of uneasy silence before we both laughed heartily (perhaps a little too heartily) at the thought. No way that morning glory did that on its own! One of us must have nudged it accidentally with our foot! Yeah, that’s what happened! That’s it! Ha, ha, ha, ha…
(A morning glory posing as a petunia)
I’m sure at this point, dear readers, that you know what happened next. And you’re no doubt recoiling in revulsion, your heart pounding with dread. Yes, yes, it’s true. One morning, as I was turning the door knob to open the front door, I looked down and there it was. A little green shoot—poking out from under our door. It looked so harmless, so innocent, so benign. But don’t be fooled by those little green shoots that start out so small; by those heart-shaped leaves; by those luminous pink, white, and purple blooms. There’s far more here than meets the eye—things that go on when we’re not looking or when we’re asleep in our beds at night.
Sure, they’re charming little flowers. Enchanting even. And I can tell you for certain that you only have to plant morning glory seeds once—after that, they easily self sow. And self sow. And self sow. So go ahead, plant them if you must. Plant them if you dare.
But don’t let your children out of your sight for a moment. Keep your eye on small pets at all times. Make sure you have a pair of sharp pruning scissors always close at hand, and be prepared to use them.
And don’t say I didn’t warn you.