Thursday, April 19, 2012

Heat Resistant Snapdragons

Heat Resistant Snapdragons, or anti-endothermic antirrhinums.

You see, the flower pot on the patio, in the foreground of the photo, with the blue glass watering bulb, has nearly dead, very shriveled snapdragons that Dr Desert Flower planted last Fall.  They bloomed over the winter, and then this month, as the ambient temperature climbed above 90, they inexorably wilted.  We had a pot on the patio table, pots near the corner, and some snapdragons in the ground, next to the living room window (seen on the right, here). 

Dr Desert Flower planted all red snapdragons.  No yellow ones this winter growing season. the previous winter (2010-2011) she did plant some yellow snap dragons.  And looky, looky, what Mother Nature did with the yellow ones?  They are growing feral, all around the back yard.  The ambient heat doesn't bother them, even in the center of a brick patio where they are growing up between the bricks.  Dr Desert Flower's theory (and I trust her theories on biological things) is that the potted plants cannot cool themselves off, and they not only dry up and shrivel, but their roots get cooked as well at intolerably high temperatures.  The flowers in the ground however, can send roots Deeper into the soil where it is cooler, and still be able to fix nitrogen, take up nutrients, and aren't getting slowly cooked (braised actually) in the pots. 

Eventually, every flower in the back yard will be burnt to a crisp in the July and August infernos at 5 to 10% relative humidity, and 115F temperatures, except for the lavenders, lantanas, and bougainvilleas which seem to thrive on the scorching heat.  But next Fall, when it cools off again, I am looking forward to a back yard full of wild flower feral snapdragons.

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