Tuesday, June 26, 2012


I spoke too jocularly yesterday. Yes, the deodar is a cedar, but it used to be a pine, and my Googling this morning suggests that it has also spent time as an abies. I learned a great new word while pursuing the subject – “basionym”. When a plant is moved from one species to another (if “species” is the word I want, there), the original classification is said to be its basionym. However, this splendid formation is not in the multi-volumned Oxford English Dictionary, so will have to be regarded with suspicion.

I’ll look the deodar up in our Great Big Tree Book (also multi-volumned) when we get to Strathardle, in hopes of finding some history of its classification. We’ve got one down the commonty, planted for Alexander and Ketki and their family because it’s a Himalayan tree, regarded as sacred by Hindus. It’s doing very well but my researches yesterday and this morning have produced some rather alarming information about its hardiness. Ours came smiling through the savage winters of ‘9-’10 and ’10-’11, and surely it gets pretty cold in the Himalayas.


More taxonomy. Thanks for the pointer to the Knitting Daily pitch on Lithuanian heels, Dawn. I’ll never know for sure about those heels, because $35 is too much (even for me) for a DVD which might not run here in Edinburgh. The short-row heel sounds like Candace Strick and Wendy’s short-row heel (the ones that start with a provisional cast-on), at least inasmuch as toe and heel are said to be the same.

“A little triangle at the bottom of the heel flap” – one of the other Lithuanian heels – sounds like the one I am doing at the moment, the upside-down French heel. Mine has got the triangle, anyway, although of course I don’t know what the Lithuanians do next.

“The T-shaped heel”? Does it sound a bit Dutch? It certainly sounds interesting.

Oh, dear – will I have to buy that video, for the sake of completeness? Maybe Donna D will write a book about Lithuanian socks.

If you Google “Lithuanian socks”, as I did just now, you get pages of Donna D., but I didn’t see any source except the DVD. Would it run here? Schoolhouse Press DVD’s run fine. I tried Amazon. Donna doesn't seem to have published anything about Lithuanian socks per se. I fell for a book called "Socken von Welt" hoping that German thoroughness would include every heel known to man.


I’m about half-way through the ribbing on Alexander’s first sock, and will try to press to the finish today.

The big news is that we have a date for a new dining room ceiling – Monday, July 9. They say they can finish the whole job, including decorating, in a week. Is it possible? Won't the new ceiling have to dry for a while? For now, let’s just relax and enjoy the thought. James and two of his children are arriving on Sunday the 15th, in the hope of going on to Strathardle with us the next day. So the timing is perfect. (Cathy and the remaining child will join us at the end of that week.)

And it also means that we can go to Strathardle tomorrow or Thursday, and get some vegetables weeded – assuming the slugs have left me any.


  1. JennyS9:22 AM

    When we had a leak in the roof, the repairs involved a whole new ceiling and a complete room redecoration - it was done in under 2 days.That was painted walls not papered though. Be sure you know what colours etc you want as they will ask at short notice :-)

  2. Ah, thanks for the information on the Deodar - I hadn't realised that it's classification might have changed TO Cedar.
    I am happy to report that ours came through the recent nasty winter, and I clearly remember seeing some pictures of them - named - in a programme about the railway up to Simla, and they were laden with snow.

  3. Trust the ceiling will be done and the slugs will have left the vegetables alone.
    There is a "stair-step" heel flap on Donna D's Lithuanian sock in "Knitting Socks from Around the World". It looks rather strange - in two colours - you do two steps and then the heel turn and a partial gusset. I am not sure I would want to try it but perhaps a library would have the book and you could save the $35 if it is the same thing?

  4. not sure if you know this one - I just saw the add yesterday:

    not sure if the book shows all the options, but in the pix on amazon it looks interesting....some more here:
    good luck with the ceiling job!

  5. Anonymous4:44 PM

    The deodara cedars are beautiful trees - they're widely planted here in California. I'd love to see whole hill sides with them! The name is derived from sanskrit words for God and for tree.

    The word you were looking for is genus, not species. When a species is moved from one genus to another, the first name it is published under is called 'basionym'. Pinus deodara is the basionym (the basal name).

    Just looked for Lithuanian heels in Nancy Bush's folk socks - none to be found.

    Looking forward to pictures of the new ceiling!


  6. =Tamar9:59 PM

    I believe de Dillmont has a stair-step heel in her Encyclopedia of needlework, 1884 and following. I have no idea whether it's the same, though.