garden

Akelei: collecting columbine seeds

We’ve seen quite some change in our apartment building in Munich over the past year and beyond. A dentistry moved out and lots of new apartments were created instead. When we moved in, there were one kid in the house, now there’s 6! The courtyard used to be overgrown, dark and not used for much other the the recurring neighbour parties and the occasional other gathering. Now, a lot of the brambly bushes had to go, there’s push green grass and a bike shack housing mostly tricycles, and my potted tomato and chard garden finds refuge in the only spot that sees a few hours of direct sun each day. Still, tearing out the sad bushes and struggling trees, left behind a lot of sores and scares that will need a few years to overgrow – probably mostly with the undeniable ivy, that’s already lurking behind my tomatoes, ready to strangle them when I don’t pay enough attention.

mangia minga // 'collecting columbine seeds'

I decided to give a more vibrant vegetation a bit of a jump start. Whenever I weed my mum’s garden path and vegetable patches I put little sprouts of sage and grape hyacinth, decorative grasses and other mysterious plants aside and transfer them into the city. Not much has survived the recent restructuring of the courtyard, so I’m reinforcing my efforts.

One thing I have successfully “imported” from my mum’s garden to the city are columbine – Akelei in German. They are so ubiquitous at my mum’s she warned my they’d take over our green spaces as well – bring it on!

They haven’t exactly taken over but in the small flower bed in the front of the house, where there’s actually some sun, there was a decent collection of purple, pale pink and white blossoms in the early summer. Plan of attack: collect those seeds and sow them in the courtyard – if need be over the next years!

Now, in the middle of summer, the seed pockets reach into the air creating curious shapes. They

mangia minga // 'collecting columbine seeds'

mangia minga // 'collecting columbine seeds'

mangia minga // 'collecting columbine seeds'

Now, in the middle of summer, the seed pockets reach into the air creating curious shapes. When you slake the seed pockets they rattle like a baby’s toy. To collect them, simply bend the seed pockets upside down into a glass jar and shake and rub the pockets.

mangia minga // 'collecting columbine seeds'

mangia minga // 'collecting columbine seeds'

mangia minga // 'collecting columbine seeds'

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