I wanted to write about my adventures in trying to start some Mescal Bean Trees in my yard but I have not gotten around to doing it until today. I discovered these trees in Tucson a couple years ago and each time I came across one in bloom I was amazed by the incredible grape candy scent that gave me an instant sense of "de ja vu" probably reminding me of carefree childhood days with grape bubblegum!
The flowers were so beautiful and the scent so tantalizing that I really wanted one or more of these trees growing in my yard. I found one little tree, about 2 foot tall at a local nursery and brought that home to plant. Despite my best efforts it hasn't done well, losing many of the leaves on some branches and just not appearing to show any growth! When reading online about them I discovered that they are indeed difficult to transplant, having a very long tap root, and not doing well when moved from one location to another.
So I have continued to provide it water, and lots of hope and FINALLY I am seeing some growth (middle picture)!
In the mean time I have collected seeds from some of these trees that grow in the public areas of Tucson and have researched online the best way to get them to sprout- I tried sanding and soaking and nicking the outside of the seed but nothing seemed to cause them to swell up and sprout!
Many of my failed seeds, went into various places in my garden, not because I thought they would really grow- but because I couldn't bear to throw them away!
Anyway yesterday I discovered a tiny little plant growing next to my bougainvillea, in a place some of the discarded seeds were planted! I dug down just a pinch and found that it was indeed one of the seeds I had planted!
I am so thrilled! I am sure the picture doesn't look like much yet- it is just a tiny little sprout- but oh the joy of seeing it! I can't wait to see how it grows and hope and pray I can transplant it to a more suitable area of my yard, once it has gotten some decent growth on it! I'll sure be watching for others to come up now too!
The Mescal Bean trees real name is Mountain Laurel-Sophora secundiflora - Fabaceae, Bean Family!