The Pregnant Onion that I mentioned yesterday is an interesting plant, and certainly worth a photograph.
It’s got a couple of huge bulbs in the center, and a collection of little babies all around it. It shot up flower stalks that are about four feet long, each one tipped with a soft flowercone, blooming from the bottom up.
I looked it up online this morning, and read a bit about it. It’s native to South Africa, and also known as Healing Onion; the leaves have a gel inside them that soothes and heals burns, like aloe vera. It may also be the case (more research is called for) that the onions, sliced in half and bandaged on a sting or a splinter, will remove the foreign body and stave off infection. The bulb itself, like many bulbs, is poisonous to eat.
An old-school gardening book says that with its external reproduction, it can be a good plant to use to introduce a child to gardening or to “help explain the arrival of a new baby” to an older sibling.
. . .
While I’ve been beavering away on my own project, I’ve been loaning my mind to a couple of works in progress that have little to do with me, and they’ve been very sparkly lately. People like me are like resonators, or signal extenders; we can provide a growing lab for ideas. It’s an odd thing; I try to study it, but it’s outside me. I only know what I need to get next to.
Information is physically communicable; I can give you a virus or a genetic condition (each of which are pure information, and cannot be said to be alive) that I show no outward evidence of having and am not aware of carrying, or I can smell it on you and try to avoid or catch it. I am drawn like a bee to honey to people who have pieces that fit into my slots.
I try to save my communion for the rocks, the cities, the stars, but of course humans are all around me and I am incessantly surrounded by their signal. Sometimes, like now, other people’s idea-problems find fertile ground in my consciousness, and I can look at the whole set of ideas as if they are a system. In that kind of seeing, certain ideas obviously go nowhere, and certain others are luminous, like doorways, or they smell like rain.