Saturday, January 12, 2008

Have They No Shame? Erotica on the Streets of Santa Barbara

Well, I never! I’m minding my own business, walking the new dog home (Biff’s his name – cocker spaniel we adopted yesterday from a local shelter) from Alice Keck Park Memorial Garden, and there they were – right out on the front lawn of a respectable business, like two feral dogs in heat. In a deep, intimate silence, unaware of gazing eyes, entwined in a frozen embrace. Cars whizzing by, people and dogs watching – have they no shame?

“Get a room!” I hollered. No response. Maybe I should turn a hose on them. Nah, they’d probably get some kinky thrill out of it. Although there are entire presidential campaigns trying build on moral issues, I’m really more of a live and let live guy, so I take a few voyeuristic shots and me and Biff are on our way. Who knows? People make a lot of money selling these kind of trashy pics on the Internet.

So let me share this little bit of horticultural erotica with you. The passionate embrace was being performed by none other than Ficus carica (Common Fig – Mulberry family) and Phoenix canariensis (Canary Island Date Palm - Palm family). This is right up there with the Capulets and the Montagues , for all you Shakespeare buffs.

But seriously, at the corner of Anacapa St. and Arrellaga St., right here in sleepy Santa Barbara, is this amaaaaazing pairing. As best I can tell, a fig seed sprouted at the base of a young palm tree, took a shine to it and asked “Why can’t we be friends?” The palm is about 40 ft. high and the fig tops off around 15 feet, with about a 20 foot spread. Each is growing fine, unencumbered by the presence of the other.

So there they are, another horticultural oddity to amuse and beguile you this Green Thumb Sunday.


Leslie said...

I admit you made me curious with the opening! Cool picture, too, although I wasn't sure what it was going to be!

Barbara said...

Your pictures show the varied whims of nature! Beautiful!

Mark said...

Sounds like it's all going on with you, sex scenes in the park ,plants entwined for everyone to's off for a cold shower for me, just the thought of it.

jodi said...

Very funny; and great photos too. A nice way to chase away the cooling air and dinginess of the garden in a Nova Scotia January, too.

Correy said...

You have a vivid imagination :)

In the rainforest here in australia it is amazing to see a strangler fig totally take over it's host tree. The host tree ends up dying and you can often walk inside... a bit creepy looking.

I wonder which who will win out of your two.

Mary said...

Great lead and a very interesting photo of these two different species living in such close proximity of each other. Thanks so much for sharing.

Anonymous said...

Ahh, you never disappoint Mr. Wise Guy. Thanks for sharing these rare oddities of Santa Barbara.

Trey Pitsenberger said...

Hey, I came to this site for plant porn and this is all you have? What a tease. Biff??? Billy, tell me the dog already had the name. Please. We'll, it is Santa Barbara.

We passed through last week as you all were getting ready for the hills to come down. Monica and I drove way up above the town and even before the BIG storm we saw the hills just starting to slide. Did you have any big slides down there this time around?

Santa Barbara is Monica's home town. We love that place. When it comes to the So. Cal. coast its the best. Next time if we have more time we would love to come hear you play or just say hi.

greeny said...

That is an amazing thing to see. Thanks for sharing and for the pleasing, humorous way in which you peaked my interest.

No Rain said...

I bet you got a lot of hits on your blog with this post,from folks doing weird searches on Google! A funny and interesting post.
Happy belated GTS,

Ewa said...

frankly speaking what an awsome thing
plants usually do NOT grow like this
ficus is just glued to palm tree
what force made them do it?

Annie in Austin said...

Hi Billy,

Thanks for coming to visit my garden blog and giving me a chance to find yours - the horticultural erotica photo is very cool - I could hear Bill Murray/Dr Peter Venkman's voice in my head saying "Figs and palms living together - mass hysteria!"

Annie at the Transplantable Rose

mmw said...

That Ficus is going to kill that Phoenix eventually. Check this out.

Garrett Sawyer said...

I guess no one has ever heard of a fig palm. lol. I think this was intentional...