I'm most fond of the gasplant, also called fraxinella or dittany or, when formality is called for, dictamnus albus. It's a beautiful plant. In flower it's an ornament to the perennial garden, and even when it's done blooming, it's neat and orderly and retains a lovely shade of green throughout the summer. Smells good too. It's a long-lived perennial, very hardy, but it takes a number of years to establish itself, but then lives almost indefinitely. If you have one, you treasure it. I have two, both of which I took from the garden of my late sister Phyllis when she died in 1998. Or should I say I had two, because over the winter one of them went missing.
In the location where there should have been and always has been a fully-mature gasplant, there was nothing -- not a leaf, not a twig, not a root. If the plant had died, it would have left some evidence behind. It's a woody plant which dies back to the ground each year, so every springs there is a bundle of dry hollow stalks or kexes. But this year nothing. Not a shred.
What happened to Mr. Dittany. Here's a possibility. I transplanted him, put him somewhere else, and then forgot that I had done so. An unlikely possibility. I searched my brain but can't' recall moving it. I searched the grounds -- no luck. If it wasn't me, was it someone else? Did some malefactor steal the gasplant? I have never heard of a gang of perennial thieves. Is it possible to believe that a nefarious individual entered the garden while I was away and heisted an out-of-season gasplant, roots and all? Not an hypothesis I can much credit. Did the plant have enemies? If it's being held for ransom, I have yet to receive the note. "We have your fraxinella. Either fork over $14.99 or we'll mow it."
Another possibility: there never was a dittany. It was always a hallucination of my decaying brain. Nope no go. It's been in the same place for years. Many people have seen it. I show it off -- it's so dramatic, so striking.
Or perhaps, it's a plot against me. Am I being gaslighted? With a gasplant?