Tuesday, 31 July 2012

BURUNDANGA : Angel's trumpets & zombies

The last few years, there's one word that strikes my mind whenever I admire the swaying blooms of my Brugmansias. It's again that time of the year.

 Every year in Colombia & neighbouring countries, but also Thailand, there are quite a few reported cases of the criminal use of burundanga, a mysterious drug that allegedly turns people into human puppets. These stories warn people that, for example, a young woman was recently assaulted after receiving a poisoned business card at a gas station. Shortly after handling the attacker’s card she began to feel dizzy and was nearly attacked by the thieves. Customers have been robbed by a salesman after eating spicy food, a girl came to hospital only to find out she was abducted and sexually abused, etc.

Such stories strongly warned the reader to beware doped cards and this new, mysterious drug: the dreaded ‘burundanga' ! Some of these stories are definitely false or just a myth, but Burundanga isn’t made up. And it might be more dangerous than even the myth makes it out to be.

I'm sure that all of you Angel's Trumpets' lovers and admirers out there know that all parts of Brugmansia and Datura plants are poisonous both to humans and animals. I've heard strange stories from people who were, to mildly put it, some sort of seekers of visionary experiences. They claimed that chewing the seeds of these plants gave them heavy hallucinations for days. Other than a raised eyebrow, at the time being my conclusion was that every fool has it's rainbow and that there was obviously a reason why these plants were called locoweed, Jimson weed, the devil’s cucumber and so on and so forth.
Nevertheless, upon watching the video on the world's scariest drug, and at the same time being a huge admirer of these astonishing plants, I was determined to find out what's hiding behind the pretty face.

So basically, it all starts with Brugmansia plant, which has a high content of scopolamine (burundanga) – an extremely toxic chemical that can be lethal to humans, and that produces psychoactive effects. Its Spanish name, El Borrachero (The Drunkard), is even more instructive. The theory, supported by health officials and victims, is that under the influence of burundanga, people are robbed of their free will and turned into puppets, completely susceptible to the suggestions of criminals.
What’s really scary about this drug is the ease that it can be administered. It can be ingested, inhaled, or imbibed. One of the myths is that you can just blow it in people’s faces. And while both toxic clouds of powder and doped business cards are unlikely to be true, the drug should be quite easy to slip into an unsuspecting person’s drink or food. Victims are said to become docile and agreeable ‘zombies’ who are not only compliant with requests but even eager to help. Stories circulate about people who have invited robbers into their own homes under the effects of burundanga. In his brilliant investigative article on Burundanga,  Nick Olle of Global Mail writes that ''
according to Colonel Mariano Botero Coy of the Bogotá Metropolitan Police, the modus operandi of these criminals - and he says they are generally gangs rather than individuals - is true to the stereotype.
"In many cases it is a man alone in a nightspot and a woman manages to put the substance in his drink," he says.
"The victim then loses their free will; they are conscious of what is happening but they lose their free will."
There's even a verb for this type of crime - burundangear. And actor Matías Maldonado, has twice been a victim. Both times - in 2003 and 2005 - he was "in the context of seduction…vulnerable" in a gay district of downtown Bogotá. His recollection of the first time he was drugged amounts to waking up confused and discovering his bank account was empty. But on the second occasion, he remembers going to an ATM with a man he'd met in a bar. "I was completely conscious at this stage," he says, "we returned to the bar and I used the money I'd withdrawn to buy drinks.
"I can only assume that at this point he spiked my drink and we went back to the ATM and emptied my account. I don't remember this part but the next day, I still had my bank card but there was a balance of zero.
"It's incredible to think that this can happen, that you can freely give the code to your bank account to someone. There are even cases where people take someone to their home, open the door and help them clear everything out." The article continues about modern burundanga ajd a tendency in Colombia to use the terms "scopolamine" and burundanga as a catchall for all cases in which criminals take advantage of drugged victims. The reality is that many of these cases now involve new burundanga or other illicit cocktails that may or may not include scopolamine.
Just like Brugmansia, there are limitless records of stories on Datura stramonium about it being traditionally used by voodoo sorcerers to create subservient zombies from living humans.
Before you are scared off from this blog post and from Angel's trumpets in general, have in mind
that apart from their undeniable beatuy, some good does come from these plants. Its alkaloid ingredients have become widely used in medicine as sedatives and amnesiacs. Hyoscyamine can help control the symptoms of Parkinson’s disease and if you have ever had your pupils dilated and it might have been with scopolamine.
 Now that there's some info revealed behind this pretty face, I'm trying to find reasons why I, myself, am so amazed by sheer beauty of this plants and their smell, and why, upon visiting a garden center, I'm drawn to any variety of Brugmansias but also Daturas, secretly hoping that it might be another new variety that I still haven't added to my collection. Is this what happens when a person gets obsessed with growing Brugmansias? Could it be that the narcotic effect of the first open flower creates an unyielding hunger for more....? Is the slowly developing addiction to scopolamine unconsciously forcing the grower to dream of acquiring more and more Brugmansia plants, because this means a larger dose of smell and thereby more narcotic? Does the intoxifying effect on the grower explain, why so many of them become so passionated about Brugmansia that they start neglecting other important things in life? If so, my dear Brugmansia-lovers, you have been burundangeared (yes, there's even a verb for this type of addiction/crime - burundangear) forever to remain zombies...

Sunday, 15 August 2010

Garden Bloggers' Bloom Day - August 2010

My garden on this feast August day in Croatia, the Assumption of Mary  (or Velika Gospa) ... perhaps not as lush as some of the August months years back, and perhaps already one foot deep in autumn's cauldron, and perhaps even quite a weird month concerning weather, droughts, lethal humidity, more draughts, and then violent winds, hailstorms ... nag, nag, nag. Do gardeners ever stop complaining about the weather? Just when they are bursting with gardening energy, it is usually raining cats and dogs. And then after spending all those weeks and months dreaming of summer days and all the benefits that sun will unleash upon their garden babies, right then, just like that, guess who comes out nagging about the unbearable heat ? So instead of fussing about something we cannot change (anymore), let's take a walk through the garden and ask if anybody's got something to say... with a special thanks to Carol of May Dreams Gardens, I'm delighted to both share and enjoy the blooms from all over the world.

Capparis spinosa
Lagerstroemia indica
Hydrangea 'Ayesha'

H. ''Mariesii variegata''

Crocosmia 'Lucifer'

If you want to join in this extraordinary feature hosted by Carol, all you have to do is simply create a GBBD post of your own on the 15th of the month and then post a comment on May Dreams gardens

Friday, 6 August 2010


I rarely visit garden centers with a fixed idea. Instead of finding a desired plant, I just let them find me. In my favourite nursery, there’s always a surprise plant lurking for me when I least expect it. Consequently, about two years ago, strikingly huge flowers caught my eye from afar. I was literally flabbergasted, my body paralysed, my heart skipping some beats. Sighs of ecstasy and utter disbelief swarmed the area. A trolley full of weird container plants with hibiscus-like flowers larger than my head. The extraordinary size of these showy flowers was just phenomenal. Stuck inside the container, a big ID card read the name of NEWBISCUS XXL ‘Mauvelous’, stating the size of 20-30 cm in diameter. Having no idea of what type of hibiscus I was dealing with, I had decided to keep it as a container plant. A month or so after flowering, it started to wilt away, just like any other bulbiferous perennial from the garden;and then finally, completely died off. Or so I thought.

I went back to the nursery and inquired about those ill-mannered Newbiscus plants, hoping to buy another one, perhaps a different color this time. But one of their staff just gave me a weird look, shrugging her shoulders and explaining that all of the remaining Newbiscus plants got some kind of disease which they couldn’t stop and eventually died, so they had to dispose of the whole shipment. Bloody hell, I whispered, it must be a joke or this is the crappiest, dullest Hibiscus specimen ever. Anyhow, the whole idea was unacceptable so I decided to keep the container with the Newbiscus leftovers. It had over-wintered outside, under the shed roof. And then, one day late spring, there was life. Small shoots started to emerge, as if trying to yell out at my recklessness. For the love of God! ❁◕‿◕❁ 
I was still doubtful, but eventually sometime in late July / August the otherwise plain, ordinary shrub started to burst out with flower buds. A week later, I noticed a few passers-by wearing a big ‘what-the-hell’ cloud above their heads and secretly observing the flower heads in disbelief. And awe!!! Therefore, late October last year I decided it was worthy of a special place in my garden so I planted it out, near one of my agey silverpines, which would provide some shade for it’s delicate flowers in the afternoon hours. This year it grew considerably bigger and richer in flower buds and those breathtaking mauve dinner-plates.

For more information, this beauty has a very own official website, providing the present and future carers with plenty of information and photos. I can only add that it is a plant that will lavishly reward even the most negligent gardeners. It has earned the medal of a tough cookie here in continental Croatia, after over-wintering weeks of -20’C temperatures and coming back in late spring. With abundance of water yet no fertilisers, I believe it came out quite mavelous for an untended 2-year old. As with any other hibiscus plants, the flowers are short-lived, especially if battered by savage rain and strong winds during summer storms (which in my case somehow synced with the flowering period continually testing the plant's resilience). But even if each flower only lasts a day, these few weeks of lavish bloom festival are worth the wait. Every bit of it. And you'll be aching to see it again in the spring ...

Wednesday, 11 February 2009

Prickly friends: Overwintering hedgehogs

This winter a few little creatures are responsible for taking most of my time. Well, not taking, just making most of my days. So here is my story of...


Early December when the winter had blown first of its cold breaths into my garden, I was to join Kristy cat on the window, during her everyday task of scanning the front garden for some action. And there was plenty. Little birds everywhere, fighting for pieces of bread crumbs and seeds that have fallen out of the feeder. And then, a wee, prickly figure staggering about with his very own slice of stale bread. It was early afternoon, and the weather was quite chilly, about -5C.

I was surprised to see a tiny hedgehog out in midday, during such a cold period, when it should have been in a 'deep sleep' mode by then. So tiny, it weighed only 200g, while a single hedgehog should weigh at least 600g to survive the winter and wake up after hibernating through the cold months. In a blink of a moment I decided to overwinter the poor little lad, even though the only experience I have had with hedgies was feeding them cat food and leftovers in the backyard. He (I later found out it was a 'he') must have been so starved out he would not let go of his stale bread. So I brought him in, and the next mission was to make him a new home. I connected two big rectangular PVC boxes with a PVC water pipe (thanks Dad).

I hardly knew anything about hedgehog care so I was learning along the way and googling up anything and everything on them. I named the little fella Billy Bob ( but any similarity with Thornton was accidental ;-). He had a severe respiratory inflammation and was so oblong and underweight he hardly resembled a hedgie (you can see how tiny he still was a few weeks after I've brought him in on the above photo). Since the vets here will rarely treat hedgies and even if they do, they will just do whatever needed to get rid of the annoying and demanding owner, it was just Google and me. Nevertheless, his health improved visibly within weeks, and so did his weight. He also had a slight mange infection which was succesfully treated with a mixture of tea tree oil and baby oil. And now, 3 months later, he is a chubby pile of prickles that can hardly fit into his tunnel, and has early morning activity moments with Kristy the cat, his personal aerobics trainer, to help him stay fit.

A month later, during the worst colds of January (-15C), thanks to dogs, we have found another lost cause in the garden, another hoglet, an autumn juvenile just like Billy Bob, that did not accumulate enough fat to hibernate, so he was roaming the frozen backyard looking for some food (or help). This lad was in a severe condition: seriously anemic, stuffed with ticks, a bad case of mange and fungal dermatitis and flu. His weight was nearly 350g but he was in such a bad condition he wouldn't even curl up in a ball. By now, I have bought another wide rabbit cage, so my hedgie could have more space to roam around in the night. It has a built-in hideout as they like to bury into an isolated place, where they can sleep during the day, undisturbed by daily light. The new hedgehog, named Marco.Polo, desperately needed some vet help.

Marco during one of his TeaTree oil antifungal baths

But like I said, I was on me own, and I had to go to the vet's and beg for a drop of Ivermectin (parasiticide) to sprinkle on his food, becasue he was too weak to be treated in any other way. He wouldn't eat for days, and had to be syringe-fed, but then he fell for something that Billy Bob had lost his head over: bananas. No tinned cat food, as delicious as it may be, no sultanas, no fruit, no treats could ever delight my hedgies as much as bananas do. Along the way, he was treated for lungworms (25mg Mebendazole two times a day, I used the meds my cats get for worming), severe respiratory inflammation (antibiotics through syringe or hidden in yummy banana slices), mange and ringworms (Canesten cream on the nose, ears and around the eyes; for prickles and belly the following mixture: a pint of tepid water, 10 drops of quality Tea Tree oil, 2 drops Lavender oil, 1 spoon of Almond oil and a squirt of baby oil, applied every 3 days) and this is the first week I can finally say he now resembles a healthy, young hedgehog, following the example of his examplary inmate, Billy Bob.

''You are what you eat'' (unknown hedgehog)

They do live in separate cages (boxes), as they are both males, and during their free walks in the front room, Billy Bob was spotted bandying Marco around like a little toy. It was only recently that they've had the opportunity to test their prickly strength with one another, since Marco was in isolation for over a month during his mites and ringworm issues. When I say cages, that's exactly what their homes are to them. No matter how much we humans will try to make their life and homes comfortable, they still are wild animals, born to be free, and they are bound to feel imprisoned. I have grown so very fond of them both, but I still think of myself as their gaoler, and sometimes think they really must hate me for depriving them of their natural life and confining them to a piece of plastic art. But I guess that's slightly a better option than being frozen to death under a pile of leaves in the backyard. In a month or so, they will be set free in the backyard where they will hopefully continue to enjoy that little bit of wilderness in this crazy town, and share our garden joys and sights with us.

Billy Bob and the art of seducing stuffed toys

1. Here are some of the most interesting, important and intriguing facts I have learned, so far, from my dear bathroom inmates, Billy Bob and Marco.Polo.
They both belong to the variety of Erinaceus concolor or the East European Hedgehog (White-breasted hedgehog) which is a protected species in Croatia, but also in the whole of EU.

2. I had to place their homes in a temperature controlled location, my bathroom and use an oil radiator to keep the place warm above 20C. The ideal temperature range for hedgehogs
is 72˚ – 80˚F ( 22-26˚C)

3. According to some guidelines, hedgies should have at least 2 square feet of floor space with a solid bottom. As they love to explore at night, the more room the better. Oh and yes, hedgies can and will climb all sorts of things and escape the cage if it has no top or the walls are not high enough (Billy Bob used to climb on his tiny hideout, a shoebox full of straw, and jump out over the walls of the box, making a great goodmorning surprise for when you step into your bathroom and suddenly feel you've just entered a poop factory ;-)

4. Generally, a hedgehog found outside during the day must be very hungry (underweight) or sick or both. They are primarily nocturnal animals, even though juveniles can be seen out during the day, foraging for food and trying to build weight before hibernation. And this particularly goes for the late litters of hedgehogs, autumn juveniles, like BB and Marco, due to the unusually warm autumn weather, like the last year's. If you ask me, the only way you will know a hedgie needs help is if you catch it and weigh it.

5. Hedgehogs need to be AT LEAST 600g in weight to be able to hibernate succesfully.

6. Be sure to visit these two great sites 1) Epping Forest Hedgehog Rescue for all sorts of medical conditions and first aid, and the plentiful 2) British Hedgehog Preservation Society for anything and everything you ever needed to know about helping the little prickly buggers. Mange, for instance, can be potentially life-threatening for a hedgehog. Loss of prickles, scaly, flaky skin, bald patches, complete loss of fur, epilepsy-like attacks, aggressive behaviour and biting your carers (hello Marco) are just some of the symptoms.

7. Some gardeners wrongly think that having hedgehogs in the garden is all they need to keep the slug and snail population down. They will only eat slugs if they are starving and no other food is available (they mainly eat beetles and caterpillars). And now the scary part: slugs and snail
are the primary carriers of lungworms which are responsible for almost as much hedgehog deaths as are humans and their careless behaviour.

When the lungworms breed inside the hedgehog they rapidly multiply, fill the hedgehog's lungs and the hedgehog either dies from drowning (Pneumonia) or bleeding from the lungs. Hedgehogs with lungworms have terrible breathing problems, are very thin and underweight, often have bad diarrhea and will have secondary bacterial infections. Once the worms are well established the hedgehog coughs like an old smoker and gasp for air before dying in agony. Post-mortem examinations often show the lungs as a solid mass with very little lung tissue left.

8. When it comes to food, I provide the following: tinned cat, puppy or kitten food (chicken flavor their favorite / never feed fish flavors), poultry flavored cat biscuits, meat leftovers like chicken and mince, bananas and sultanas as treats, 100% natural muesli (Tropical flavor), probiotic yogurt, worms, crickets... Hedgehogs should never be given cow's milk, bread or salty foods. Also, hedgehogs drink a lot of water. And like I said, when it comes to bananas, I could swear I have heard both of them purr out of joy.

9. Whilst the hedgehog is in hibernation, a number of odd things happen to it: The hedgehog stops being a warm blooded animal since this uses up too much energy. Its body temperature falls to match that of the surrounding environment. However, the surrounding temperature must not be below freezing (the ideal temperature in the nest for successful hibernation is about 5º c) and if it rises too much, the animal's blood flow will increase and start to use up too much stored fat. The hedgehog becomes cold to the touch; stops moving; heart rate drops
to about 20 beats per minute. To wake up, the hedgehog needs to metabolise fat which warms the body and begins to get the blood flowing again. The hedgehog may help itself along by shivering. This can all take from 1/2 to 1 hour to complete. Only then does the hedgehog have a normal body temperature and can again venture out into the world
10. Hedgehogs taken into care do not have to and should not hibernate ! They do well and are all the more fit for missing it.

11. SELF-ANOINTING: If you smell *really* interesting, your hedgehog will lick or nibble on you, back off, and suddenly contort itself, start foaming at the mouth, and lick the foam onto its spines. This ``self-anointing'' has to be seen to be believed, but it's perfectly normal. It's not known for sure why they do it, but it probably has something to do with self-defence; hedgehogs are *highly* resistant to most toxins, and when they encounter something that might be toxic, they get it in their mouths, foam, and cover themselves with the toxic mixture. The result is a toxic hedgehog, which is really something to reckon with. (Incidentally, the toxin resistance of hedgehogs is truly prodigious and has been the subject of some research; they are one of the few animals that can safely eat giant toads (Bufo marinus), for instance. They will also seek out and kill adders (they are immune to their venom).

I noticed my hedgies like to chew on the carpet, looking for
strange odours (like stain removers)or stick their little noses
into the vacuum cleaner extensions and sniff away!

12. Hedgehogs are extremely car-sick.

13. Long before the advent of Groundhog Day on
February 2nd, the Romans observed a similar event thousands of years ago
on the exact same day. Rather than use the North American groundhog,
the Romans used the hedgehog.

14. “If during hibernation, he (the hedgehog) looks
out of his den on 2nd February and sees his shadow it means there is a clear
moon and six more weeks of winter so he returns to his burrow.”

15. Until 1990's, there was no name for a baby hedgehog, so the hedgie
enthusiasts gave it a name: hoglet.
16. Hedgehogs have an amazing immunity to most things that are toxic.
Quantities of many toxins that would kill a human hundreds or even thousands of times over will often have no noticeable effect on a hedgehog at all. This trait has inspired both legends and scientific research, with no conclusive results other than acknowledgment that it is true.

17. Another great site about providing care for autumn orphans/juveniles.

18. Gardeners also need to be aware that injuries caused by lawn mowers and
trimmers are one of the most common type of injuries in hedgehogs.

I never knew that if my hands smelled of soap,
it would trigger the unpleasant hedgehog bites.

I'd swear not even dogs could bite that hard.
Marco would too. ;-)

19. I've mentioned the Tea Tree oil before. It is supposed to be toxic for hedgehogs, as well as for other animals. I would add that this is true to some extent, for if it gets digested in any way, it surely is TOXIC, even for humans (but you can still make an excellent TeaTree oil mouthwash;-). Or if it's a poor quality, or a quality that is good for nothing more than your finest aroma burner. But when it comes to 100% pure essential oils like that of Primavera Life and Oshadhi, I can say it is one of a few natural antibacterial, antifungal and antiviral products that really do make a difference. Same goes for a Tea Tree cream from a good health shop or chemist, and in many cases it has shown to be an excellent cure, if not better than traditional veterinary remedies.

20. Do visit the Epping Forest Hedgehog Rescue (UK) for anything and everything you ever wanted and needed to know about hedgehogs. Find out how to help ''The Hedgehog in YOUR garden!''

So much about my prickly little friends for now. As far as my gardening spirit is concerned, with the first rays of sunlight, I galloped to the local nursery only to discover a new target of my lust: Vossii Laburnum and a fresh supply of spring bulbs. Sweet heavens !!!

Kristy cat ponders whether cat tunnels were originally
for those ill-mannered, prickly rascals

Monday, 24 November 2008

Mystery plants and horticultural imports

When the strict protocols governing import and export of plants are concerned, gardeners are especially likely to snatch a plant part and smuggle it back home for propagation (are they ??). Concerning all that, I found an interesting article over at BackyardGardener - ''Gulid-free Souvenirs''. Also more on the delusiveness of plants ... LOL

Euphoric Euphorbia was the 1st plant I smuggled back to my garden from the land of Odysseus. But certainly not the 1st one that has put a spell on me. I was not bothered about all the safety regulations (I was not smuggling immigrants after all) , I had one fear only, of those passion-less passport control drones confiscating my little friends. But luckily they were always more concerned with my Carmex lipbalm. 3 years ago, back on Kefalonia island, in an old churchyard,
I spotted this beautiful, delicate plant fluttering in the wind. There was only another larger tree of the like on the island, in the protected laguna, already carrying seedpods but they were not ripe yet. I took some anyway, but never managed to germinate them. 3 years later, this August, it was the right time to harvest some more seed pods. Naturally, I still hadn't the faintest idea what the plant was, except that it belonged to the bean family, judging its seed pods. So instead of asking around, I went on a googling mission through the whole Fabaceae (bean) family. An hour later, already discouraged by hundreds of cousins and no look-a-likes, I suddenly came across this name. The foliage was identical, so were the seed pods, and seed size, shape and color. Parkinsonia. Parkinsonia acuelata ! Possibly. At least I think so, if you think I might be wrong, feel free to widen my horizons. After all, this has been a mystery plant here for years.
The Irish botanist Thomas Coulter was the first to categorize the plant. He obtained specimens near Hermosillo, Sonora in 1830. Also known as Mexican Palo verde tree, or Jerusalem thorn. I recently ran into an article about gardeners, their star signs and the plants they were attracted to. Apparently, Cancers are strongly attracted to the Bean family, esp. to the Mimosa tree look-a-likes. I can wholeheartedly confirm that, as I have had the strangest affinities towards the fan-like foliage which has led me to collect anything from Mimosa (Acacia dealbata) to Jacaranda tree, even though I can only grow some of them as greenhouse plants. Albizia julibrissin makes up for all those who can't be planted outside. I'm actually trying to push the limits and grow my Mimosa outdoors (with considerable winter protection) against the south wall along with Figs and Palm trees.

Parkinsonia in the churchyard of
Kipouria monastery, Kefalonia

Now back to Parkinsonia. Greece, or Mediterranean or even Europe are not at all what you would call a typical habitat for these. It doesn' t even fit in with the surrounding flora. Rather it is native to the semi-desert areas of Africa and the Americas. I can't possibly see how it ended up in Greece except onboard some sort of vessel full of smuggling gardeners ... Still, it has adapted very well and grows in a dry, barren part of the island. I'm sure to all of you in the southwestern parts of the US, Palo verde is just an ordinary, everyday bush. In Australia even, it is is a Weed of National Significance. It is regarded as one of the worst weeds in Australia because of its invasiveness, potential for spread, and economic and environmental impacts. I have already germinated 3 of the seeds and the babies are doing great LOL.

Greek Palo-verde

Now to go back at the top photo, which is another mysterious plant for the locals, found in the same churchyard. In my opinion a sort of Campanula (very drought resistant for sure), possibly Campanula rapunculus or C. pyramidalis ??? Hardly needs any soil to grow and thrives on dry stone walls, growing out of structural cracks. Unfortunately, I have not acquired one of these, but have seen them growing out of old city walls on several Croatian heritage hotspots.

And the last one, but not the least. Not as mysterious but equally breathtaking. Urginea (Scilla) maritima or Sea Squill. Has absolutely gigantic bulbs which stick out half way above the ground level and have made my luggage wear the 'heavy tag'. I have smuggled four of these, having to choose only those smaller in size to be able to cram them in. While on a goat path, trying to find way to a secret cave somewhere between nowhere and goodbye of Kefalonia, I ran into a whole area dotted with hundreds and hundreds of these bulbs, actually there were so many you couldn't help but trip over them.

These beauties are native to the Mediterranean coastal regions, and while prone to fires and high temperatures, they are known to be frost tender in the continental areas. I'm pushing the envelope there too, planted one outdoors while the other three remain potted inside, chucklin' on the windowsill at their infortunate brother. Apart from being giants among all Mediterranean geophytes, the bulbs are also very poisonous. For more detailed info, visit here and there.

Sea Squill

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