Friday, August 1, 2014

Luyken and Lutch-ien

The Laurel hedge, easier to call them Cherry Laurels, although they are a cultivar of Cherry Laurel called "Otto Luyken," after Otto Luyken a German Gardener, and I have always pronounced his name "Lutch-ien" because that's how I first heard it pronounced by an English Gardener who is certainly gone now, unless he's about a hundred a forty, but who planted more Potato than I can ever hope to.  Either way, the Cherry Laurel hedge had a bad winter, and is still struggling a little with die-back, which is what happens to plants when parts of them decide they no longer wish to participate. It was the same with Buddleia. So no shortage of bits of wood for the Outdoor Stove.

 The trouble with Cherry Laurel as fuel for the outdoor stove is twofold. The first, it has a very high ash content, which might make it good for glazes and all that ho-ha, add it to clay and you might get some serious fluxing. The other problem with Cherry Laurel is what I am going to call  "Aromatic Exuberance." It's a killer on the nose, goes right through the nose hairs into the sinus, and there it promotes a discord which goes down to the ears and effects balance amongst those of us who are prone to a tinnitus that follows being bonked on the head once too often while in formative years. The first five to thirty five years. As for the pronunciation of "Luyken", you can tell a lot about a person from how they react to "Lutch-ien."

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