I always feel a twinge when something living gets destroyed, but in this case I’m in full agreement with our neighbors, who decided the towering row of out-of-control, top-heavy and increasingly teetering giant birds of paradise growing on the south side of their house needed to come down. Proof of how awesome they are: they even gave us a heads-up as to their plans and asked if we were cool with it.

So when I heard a crew arrive this morning and begin to make preparations for the plants’ removal, I grabbed a cam for before and after shots from the same vantage point (click them for the bigger pictures):

Number of seeds: Five

Planted: July 4

Sprouted: July 8-11

Patched (as seen below): July 12

The good news is that — as planned — I got an earlier start with my pumpkin patch than last year. The bad news is that — not as planned — juuust like last year instead of planting pumpkin seeds I may very well have planted completely similar looking butternut squash seeds. Again.

Basically what happened last year is that I mixed up seed sets of the two veggies because I just left them sitting on the sill unidentified. When I planted them last summer I did an eenie-meaney-miney-mo and thought I’d planted pumpkin. It didn’t take long to be shown my error and we wound up with a nice 11-pound crop of butternuts.

To remedy that fail I vowed not to repeat it, but once again the batch of seeds left on the sill in a shot glass went unlabeled and now I’m not sure if they’re one or the other. But whatever they are they have happily sprouted and been transferred to the patch.

PS. It wouldn’t be a proper day of digging in the backyard if I didn’t unearth something (however minor) to add to the Backyarchaelogy Museum: