Jack’s in His Pulpit, All’s Well With the World

The last week of May is generally the busiest week of the year in my job. This year the last week of May effectively lasted until June 2nd, which is why I didn’t get home until this afternoon (after being away since last Sunday).

I’m rather overwhelmed by all that’s going on in the garden, and by all I need to do to catch up. The giant branch of the Siberian Elm (Ulmus pumila) that came crashing down to earth yesterday isn’t helping, but I won’t talk about that now.

Jack-in-the-Pulpit. The flower that gives the plant its name is somewhat hidden by the leaves. 

Instead, I want to show you several Jack-in-the-Pulpit plants (Arisaema triphyllum) which planted themselves in the back garden. (What is the plural of Jack-in-the-Pulpit? Jacks-in-the-Pulpit? Jacks-in-Pulpits?) They are a welcome surprise.

Now you can see the flower. The pulpit is called the spathe, and Jack is the spadix. 

When we moved here, there were a couple of Jacks, but they vanished on me. I tried several times to plant replacements, but each was undone by rust. Except now here they are, perhaps from seeds left by the original Jacks.

Keep going to see some other random garden views.

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Wild Columbine (Aquilegia canadensis) with Ostrich Fern (Matteuccia struthiopteris). Sadly most of the Wild Columbine didn’t live through the last winter.


Here’s a closeup of the Wild Columbine flower.


Golden Alexander (Zizia aurea) is blooming now.

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Here’s Golden Alexander with some orange Poppies. Sometimes you can make really nice combinations with native and non-native plants – the GA is native, the poppies not.


White Wild Geranium (Geranium maculatum var. album).

That’s the best I can do for now in terms of a post, except I will share some good news with you. We got a second opinion on the sewer line. Turns out we can wait until September to take care of it. Plus the cost will be obscene, but about $1,000 less obscene than we originally thought.

Hope to be more on top of things next week, on the blog and in the garden. a

49 Comments on “Jack’s in His Pulpit, All’s Well With the World”

  1. Aren’t Jacks the most interesting plants. I have read that ants will take those seeds places and plant them for you. Maybe this happened in your garden. I would enjoy poppies no matter where they popped up in my garden. I think this is a beautiful combination with the Golden Alexander. I hope you get caught up soon. Good news about your sewer line.

  2. My garden is green and drowning. Waiting for the bearded irises to open and hoping another storm doesn’t destroy the blooms. My volunteer clematis that I discovered last year is doing really well and lets hope it blooms. And my lamb’s ears appeared last year too after a decade of being gone. Weird.

  3. Brief panic set in when I saw your golden Alexander. It looks so much like a plant I’d identified as Texas umbrellawort, I thought I’d been mistaken. Then, I compared the leaves, and it’s clear they’re different plants, although both are in the carrot family. Tauschia texana is endemic to Texas, but we have the golden Alexander, too — which I didn’t know until I read about it here.

  4. It is amazing what goes on in the garden when you’re not looking. 🙂 Loving your wild columbine, mine is done for the year, though I have a yellow one in bloom, which is odd for June. What is the heart-shaped foliage planted near your wild one?

  5. Welcome home! Your legislative session is badly designed for gardeners. Virginia’s is out of session by spring — convenient for gardening, but I can’t recommend the legislative results…

    Where did you get the white Geranium maculatum? I planted two different named white selections, hoping their offspring would be mostly white-flowered. Sadly, the majority of seedlings are a washy pink.

  6. I have been too busy to blog too, planting up a large area of my garden with prairie-type plants and ornamental grasses. Do you have Hostas flowering already? The shot of the Columbine with the ostrich fern looks like it also has Hosta flowers in it, as well as Brunnera leaves?

  7. They are unusual plants Jason. I think I have only ever seen them on blogs and not ‘in person’. I have a similar white geranium (can’t recall the name) and they do look lovely brightening a shady spot. The Golden Alexander and poppy are a very pretty combination. Hope you get more time for the garden this week.

  8. This is such a timely post, I can’t believe it. A gardening friend gave me two Jacks. I must have killed or buried one, but I had one this year, and its a beauty. But, then I went out into what I call the pucker brush to drop off some limbs and leaves and there in my path were two Jacks. I got so excited I couldn’t believe it. I know I wasn’t supposed to move them until fall, but I dug them up because they were in the walkway and moved them next to the other one. So, I raise my glass to more Jacks for both of us. 🙂

  9. The usual direction of these things is more expensive, not less, so good news (or at least better news) about the sewer line. I feel your pain about being overwhelmed by all that needs to be done. For us, the weather kept me out of the garden for so long & delayed both maintenance and planting out so it’s a race to catch up before heading to Denver next week. Top of the list is getting the irrigation set up in the side border – don’t want to take any chances with all the new plantings!

  10. I went on a field trip to east Texas recently, and got to see Jack-in-the-Pulpit. I’m going back for another plant walk tomorrow, and taking my camera this time. I got to see pitcher plants, too. East Texas certainly is a different world.

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