Things To Do In Dallas When You’re Dead

Oh, I had plans for April. Honest. This weekend belonged to setup and covering of a new greenhouse, courtesy of my friend Brindle, specifically to protect the Sarracenia and Nepenthes from the worst of the drying summer wind. I actually had most of that set up last weekend: while everyone else was soaking up the exemplary weather, I was scrambling to tape down greenhouse film on the sides of this monster, only stopping after I’d passed “we’re out of natural light” time and flirted with “If you don’t knock it off with the racket, the neighbors are going to call the cops”. At that point, I looked at the work, figured “Oh, tomorrow is going to be a good day, so I’ll just finish the work in the morning.

Oh, I hadn’t considered the horrendous thunderstorm that barreled through the Dallas area on Sunday morning. Best laid plans and all that. On the bright side, though, we’ve had enough rain in the area over the last week that the Sarracenia are as big as I’ve ever grown them, and the greenhouse can wait until next weekend.

After that, though, the month gets busy. It’s not just show season. It’s now lecture season, and the next few weeks are full of them.

Firstly, longtime readers and customers know about my fondness for the new Perot Museum of Nature & Science located in downtown Dallas. Word apparently leaked back to the folks at the Perot, because I just received an invitation to show plants at its Earth Day festivities on April 20 and 21. Remember how I mentioned those giant Sarracenia? If the weather holds and they aren’t pummeled with hail (and those who remember the tornadoes that hit the area a year ago today shouldn’t be surprised by this news), those pitcher plants will be some of the highlights of my presentations. That’s in addition to the other usual suspects. Right now, the crew at the Perot expects anywhere from 2000 to 5000 people at the Museum on each day, and I speak from experience when I warn about everything being sold out days or even weeks in advance, so buy your tickets NOW.

Numero two-o, after the Perot show, things get even more interesting. Two weekends after the Earth Day show, the Triffid Ranch returns to Texas Frightmare Weekend, located once again at DFW Airport, for its fifth appearance at Frightmare. If weather holds and everything else works out, this should be the biggest Triffid Ranch show yet. Carnivores, succulents, lots and lots of Bhut Jolokia peppers (courtesy of the varieties raised by Dilly’s Chiles of Oregon, which include red, yellow, orange, and chocolate). This will also be the first Triffid Ranch show with an assistant: Marie, an old friend who wants a good excuse to come out and say hello, so please say hello back.

Numero three-o, specific details will follow, but the folks at Hold Fast Tattoo in Dallas have been regular customers, supporters, and friends for years. Recently, staff piercer Kira was hospitalized with seizures, and the Hold Fast crew is organizing a fundraiser to help pay her medical bills. In my case, I’m donating an exclusive carnivorous plant enclosure to the fundraiser’s art auction, and probably a lot of other items besides. Considering how Kira is one of the most interesting people I know in a world chock full of interesting people (she even adopted Stella, the World’s Meanest Box Turtle, from me a while back), it’s the absolute least that I can do.

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