I am endlessly entertained (perhaps writing too frequently) by seedlings in the garden. No, I am not enthused by weed seedlings, their removal the reason for much of the garden’s labor, but I am often fascinated with the unusual places that seedlings and sporelings (ferns) pop up.
Most seedlings must be weeded out and discarded because there are too many, or the placement doesn’t work (in the middle of a pathway), but others are allowed to grow or are transplanted. Earlier this year I noticed long branches arching out from under an Okame cherry and over the top end of the koi pond. Not a seedling that had just germinated, but hidden in the clutter until now. At the time, I guessed that the nondescript leaves were of beautyberry (Callicarpa, above), but now the identity can be confirmed.
Perhaps of interest to no one else, but this is a white berried beautyberry rather than the more typical purple berried shrubs (Callicarpa americana and C. dichotoma) that are found in the front and rear gardens. Two white berried beautyberries, one green leafed and the other with variegated leaves (Callicarpa dichotoma f. albifructa ‘Duet’, above) are planted in swampy ground in the rear garden. While the green leafed beautberry thrives, the variegated variety never seems very pleased in the damp soil. It produces a scattered few berries, but of course from one beautyberry or the other there were sufficient numbers that birds harvested the berries and deposited seeds that now grow up through the cherry.
If this seedling came up anywhere except this place it’s likely it would have been weeded out long ago, but here it will stay. From what I can tell, and it’s difficult to get close enough through branches of the cherry and two large hydrangeas, there are at least two beautyberries, both with white berries in late summer. The two tall seedlings not hurting anything except to make this area appear even more wild and unmanaged, and certainly I won’t argue about adding a bit of color.