Spanning the globe with frequent and once in a while readers. I am interested in collecting, propagating plants, landscape management practices, ecology, environment, flora/fauna, in essence Nature. This blog is written in a blunt, abrasive fashion with consistent critical views on these subjects and others that may be related...or not.

jueves, 22 de octubre de 2009


I TOOK THE TRAIN from Santurce, to Rio Piedras, it is clean, cool, quiet and efficient. I was not certain about the public transportation in minibuses as I knew it once, since
I have not used it in two decades. When I was a college student there were at least
sixty of this classical third world minibuses, loud radios, shitty music, no air conditioning, 16 people instead of twelve and so on ... There were none, at least
at 8AM. I waited for twenty minutes, exchanging sentences with an ancient fellow, for the big bus. Not bad for $1.50, no music, nice air conditioning not overcrowded and clean.

The trip took almost forty minutes. It was like metal, concrete/asphalt stabs to my eyes, left and right down the road with an irritating bright annoying sun. The trees many, many on both sides have disappeared. Only in the memory they remain. Inside the bus there was only one complaint,
the old farts using their cellulars as if in a live conversation, in their living rooms. I hate phones, particularly in elevators, cars, offices, close to me period. God damned

CAGUAS, my former hometown, is clean, quiet, like a ghost town. I found Juan Garcia, by the corner of the CATHEDRAL, still around on his sidewalk cafeteria. We went to Jose de Diego elementary during 1959/1963. Where were you then?

After a few sentences of greetings, I hit the road on the deserted sidewalks by Betances street, the landmark drugstore is still around in the same spot. A few steps to the right I had the ecotourist pleasure of entering the Museo de Artes Populares
or whatever in the corner of Padial St. A wonderful building with a long history
that I will skip and a professional restoration. Excellent conversation with RITA,
the person in charge.

It happens that RITA, grew up in the SANTURCE area where I know live. We exchanged anecdotes, mine are recent, hers are ancient. I crossed the street to the opposite corner to visit the oasis. I had one and one. One with a chaser, leaving
quickly thanks to the noise of the one arm bandits loud corny music.

Crossed the street again to Padial, enjoying greatly the MUSEO DEL TABACO HERMINIO TORRES GRILLO. Got the change of checking a couple of seniors
rolling cigars, a real trip that I got to see as a child for a brief period and moons
later, where else? IN NEW YORK, Cubans and Dominicans have their shops where
you can watch them and buy those according to your budget, taste, knowledge.
In Caguas, you may a bunch for twenty five bucks, excellent gift for the aficionados.

In both museums in that concrete/asphalt valley, one can relax, go back in time briefly, with care not to fall in the heavy nostalgia lane. Caguas is only a faded,
memory of beautiful buildings destroyed by avarice. Or the PLAZA, with huge
trees destroyed by the illiterate fools yielding machetes, pruning for decades
the Ficus and else...Destroying the relation crown/root.

A couple of more good news in the botanical segment of our show.


Antigonon leptopus

Petrea volubilis

Bauhinia tomentosa

The first came after the 5th attempt from seeds, after I had forgotten. A couple
of days ago while doing our early routine with DIVA, I noticed the flowers. One
of the earliest botanical memories in my life.

Petrea volubilis, was the second or third attempt from cut stems. Today
while irrigating I got the great pleasure of seeing the first leaves in two
branches. If you have no idea of what this climber look like, check under
Wisteria to have an idea. The later is prettier but it does not grow in tropics.

Last but not least. This Bauhinia is rare because the bone white flower
does not look at all like an orchid, as many of these species. This one
is just one of twenty seeds planted and forgotten.

Editors note

Some prefer to use rooting hormones to accelerate
or improve the chances of success with cut stems, I do not.
But is not a bad idea.

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