Verbena bonariensis & a Red Kerosene StoveSunday, August 18, 2019
|Verbena bonariensis 19 August 2019|
Winters in my boyhood Buenos Aires were damp and cold. The only warm room was our kitchen. Our live-in housekeeper Mercedes Basaldúa would turn on the gas oven and open the oven door.
In other rooms we had a tall red kerosene stove. The stench of the kerosene was awful. Mercedes would put a pan of water with leaves from a bush in our garden that we called cedrón. Sixty nine years later I can now with the quick help of Google tell you that the plant in question was Aloysia citriodora which is a member of the Verbenaceae or in plane language a member of the verbena family.
|October 24 2016|
In our Kitsilano garden we have another verbena, Verbena bonariensis. It has lightly fragrant flowers in a plant that can be up to 6ft tall. Because it is slender and self-seeding this plant is a friendly plant in the garden. It allows you to see what is behind if you put it in the front of the border or it can grow in the back and you can still see its flowers.
I would have never known, but I do now that our Kits Verbena bonariensis is somehow linked with a stinky red kerosene stove.
Mercedes would remove the stove as soon as we got into bed and would bring us bricks that had been heated in the oven, wrapped in soft cloth.