As the news feeds keep noting, the Dallas area got a bit of a hail pounding last night. No, that’s not some kind of weird Texas euphemism. A fair portion of the city took significant damage from hail ranging up to baseball-sized, with the worst damage just to the south of the Triffid Ranch. Specifically, the Lakewood area of East Dallas apparently had the most spectacular hailfall: the video feed making the rounds on CNN this morning showed a corner literally a block away from where my ex-wife and I lived in the mid-Nineties. Over here, we didn’t get so much as a sprinkling of rain, but a couple of miles south…oh, it was ugly.
Since I haven’t been in the area, I don’t know how many friends and cohorts are in trouble, but I now know for a fact that the Dallas branch of Redenta’s garden center was blasted as well. As of today, they’re hosting a 75-percent-off sale on hail-damaged plants, and I only wish I could get down there myself. Head down there right now, and please let them know I’m thinking of them.
In much happier news, I’m always glad to make a joyous noise on behalf of fellow carnivorous plant ranchers, and it’s time to note that Sarracenia Northwest, just outside of Portland, Oregon, holds its next Customer Appreciation Weekend on July 14 and 15. Yes, I’m saying this is worth a road trip. Yes, I’m saying this is worth getting a plane ticket for the visit. I wouldn’t go so far as to say that I’d move back to Portland just to be closer to the nursery, but I’m awfully tempted.
And in peripheral news returning to Dallas, last February’s show at ConDFW benefited both from exceptional weather for February (and the automatic response of everyone who lived through the February ice storms of 2011 is always suffixed with the phrase “Dig deeper, Watson”) and a very professional and organized dealer’s room crew. I was already tentatively planning a Triffid Ranch show at next year’s show, but discovering that the convention staff plans a major announcement on the new hotel venue? That sinks it. Get your tickets as soon as they’re available, and I hope to have a very singular collection of Nepenthes ready in time for the show next spring. (For those out-of-towners whose impressions of Dallas are based on the television series, February is spring out here, most years. Besides, you shouldn’t be watching the new Dallas TV show anyway. It was a lot better, and a lot more accurate concerning the University Park/Highland Park/Uptown areas, when it was still called The Walking Dead.)