Yikes! I hate to admit it but yeah, that's me. Not pretty. But I earned that awfulness. I spent a significant amount of time in the backyard fighting the good fight against those bizarre vines. Those ones that are trying to take over the world, one backyard at a time. (I wrote about it last week)
My friend Marsha looked it up (I was too lazy) and it turns that this mystery vine is something called Bitter Melon. It has somehow migrated here from both Asia and Africa (or perhaps it's one or the other) and it is a Class II invasive. I could have told them about the invasive part. What a pain in the butt this thing is.
The article went on to say that scientists believe that this plant has properties that could, eventually cure some pretty awful diseases like Diabetes and/or Leukemia. But it's absolutely poisonous if you eat it. Not to worry. I had no intention of eating it. The Bitter Melon is driving citrus growers slowly mad here because it attaches itself to the fruit trees that is never a good thing.
It's also not a good thing in my yard doggone it! So I put on some grubby clothes, sun screen and gloves and went to work. I attacked it with vigor. I attacked it with prejudice. I attacked it with no mercy. Tugging and pulling and digging and hauling and yanking and twisting and swearing more than I would really care to admit and eventually I had an impressive pile of vines.
I was panting and sweaty and really really tired and had a strange taste in my mouth but I felt accomplished! The entire width of the back of the yard had been brutalized by me. I sat next to the pile for a minute to catch my breath.
Yup that's the pile next to me. As you can see, it's taller than I am (when I'm sitting down). Looks like a green haystack.
Breath caught, I hauled my arse back to a standing position and looked at the back of the yard and dang, it looks like I barely touched it. So discouraging. I decided that no matter what, I was done for the day and came inside to clean up. Which necessitated a shower and washing everything I took off, including gloves and shoes. Hey if it's poisonous to eat, who knows what else can do? I do tend to be very prone to rashes from exposure to grasses and plants and trees which is why I always wear gloves and am fully covered when I do yard work.
Still, erring on the side of caution, the shower, the load of laundry (in hot water!) may not be enough and so, being extra cautious, I took a Benadryl too. (the antihistamine properties can stave off allergic reactions to topical exposure too!)
Of course Benadryl makes me very very sleepy so I'm guessing that a nap is next up on my agenda!
Originally I was thinking that I would tackle the vine problem again later this week but then I thought, hey, we have a lawn service. I think I will ask those guys to just mow all the way back to the fence from now on.
And come to think of it, when we first bought the house, that "wildflower" patch was only about 2 feet deep. Now it's more like 5 or 6 feet deep which means that every time those guys mow, they are doing less and less of the yard. AHA! I may be on to something here!
I think that is the answer. I'll talk to the lawn guys. Problem, if not solved, than at least better managed. The End.
Yup, this is me. Some people said, "Sam, you should write a Blog". "Well, there's a thought", I thought to myself. And so here it is.