We are well into summer now. Spruce Pine (NC) is about two weeks behind the growing season of other communities, being at above 3,000′ elevation. Now, we are seeing flowers and other plants rushing to bloom and hurrying to produce seed for the next season .
For example, the chives that you see in this photo, having survived the very harsh, cold winter here, came up obviously from seed blown against the wooden post and “took root.” I’m sure that this plant came from ONE seed but it became prolific. Perhaps the plant knew that it had to replicate itself quickly in order to prepare for a possible hard freeze next winter! The original plants from which this seed came including the bulbs that sprout them all died out during the very cold winter we had.
If you look closely at the flower, you will see in the very center there are about a half-dozen bulb shaped pods (click on the photo and you will see a very large view). When the “pods” mature, they open up and drop a large number of very tiny, black seeds.
So, it appears that the plant can reproduce itself in two ways; the bulb that develops (chives ARE in the onion family) will divide and form new plants. Plus, the seed pods will also drop new seed just in case they are needed. I like that, for this one plant has given me more than enough chive to flavor my baked potatoes, make a sandwich spread with creamed cheese and/or sour cream, perk up the flavor of soups and stews and many other delicacies.
This will last all summer and well after a medium frost. The stems can also be clipped and dried for winter use.
Now, if I can just discover a way to drop a piece of prime rib into the ground and hope – – – !