There has been travel. As all gardeners know, travel of any kind involves going to interesting nurseries. An official warning that there would be very little, if any, extra room for purchases or roadside pick me ups in the vehicle was issued by The Financier from the get go. But oh, what a perfect bit of artistry was this large head, spotted at a researched before we left home directions printed and in hand establishment. It would fit perfectly in that same Fairegarden. It could be bungeed to the top of the car with no problem, for it was just a plastic shell of a man. I could lift it with one hand, and am quite the weakling if not of the ninety pound variety. Alas, it was too large and did not come back home to Tennessee. But the photo will keep the memory alive. Maybe next time, if there is a next time. By the way, Blodgett’s is where it can be found. There is a matching female head as well.
What did come home with me was this blue pot with the perky nose, mouth and chin. This is the smaller sized pot, a larger identical one once again would not fit in the vehicle, too big even for one’s lap. Planted with new plants that also made the trip on my lap, (really at my feet but you get the gist) Bulbine frutescens, something that has been on the wish list since seeing it on Pam of Digging’s blog even though it is not hardy to my zone 7 garden, and an assortment of Profusion Zinnas. It might be possible to winter the entire pot in the garage. Hardly visible in the dark green pot, former home of the rosemary topiary forest that died in our harsh winter, is a new red Phormium with sweet peas in training up bamboo stakes. The middle pot is planted, so far, with Erysimum ‘Jenny Brock’. Not shown because it has not been decided where they should go but also purchased while traveling are Cuphea cyanea ‘Jamaica Sun’, Persicaria capitata, and firecracker plant, Russelia equisetiformis. I am aware of the invasive nature of the Persicaria in warm climates, however it is marginally hardy here, if at all. The Russelia and Cuphea will be treated as annuals.
You might be able to guess where the travelers visited by this photo of Mister and Missus Semi and their offpspring LTB in front of a focal point there. It was Mister Semi who instigated the trip, with his high school baseball team playing in a tournament here. Yes, they won the whole enchilda. Yea team!
The title of the post was inspired by the sight that greeted us upon our return, the Yoshino cherry tree, Prunus yedoensis in full bloom. As we drove through Macon, Georgia on the trip back home, we saw hundreds of these trees dotting the landscape along the interstate there. This town has made a large scale planting and has a festival to celebrate these beautiful trees, click here to find out more. This was learned as research was done for a post about the blooming last year, which can be seen by clicking here-Right On Schedule and the sight of so many blossoms triggered the memory of that fact. To follow the cherry thought, there was a candy bar, not really a bar but rather a large bumpy round, larger than a golf ball, smaller than a baseball, from my youth in Oklahoma with the disturbing name of Cherry Mash. It has an erotic hot pink fondant center surrounded in chopped peanuts and dipped in milk chocolate. One could only eat one of these confections at one sitting, and then would need a lie down to recover from the overdose of sweet. It was right up my alley. The last time we went to the Sooner State, many years ago, a box of these treats made the trip home with us. That pretty much satisfied the craving for a lifetime. They have a web site, (who doesn’t?) click here to view it, if you dare.
For those who did not get the last clue as to where our spring break vacation was spent, here are a couple of shots taken by the management as the flume was descended by each group, available for purchase. Some smart patrons simply took a picture of the photo display with their cell phones, but we actually bought the pictures then snapped the images to share, doing a little cropping on the first one to protect the innocent. This ride was enjoyed twice in fact, on two separate occasions, though apparently not all riders were as joyful as the Fairegarden clan members, from the look of the lady behind us in the second shot. The first time around Semi, LTB and The Financier were in the front seats, with Aunt Lynn and me in the next seat. Shortly after the mountain splash drop, the ride shut down and we were stuck in these plastic, very wet logs for over an hour, thankfully not where the music was playing. Fastpasses were handed out to those of us who remained in the logs as instructed until the operation was up and running again. The pass allowed those holding these valuable cards to skip to the front of the line rather than inch through the serpentine paths to ride again. We did clue into the usefulness of obtaining such passes the next day, with a time printed to return to the rides with longer waiting periods to bypass those less fortunate non fastpassers which we always were on our first day of fun. Our complimentary passes had no such time on them and we sprinted through the special ramps right to the boarding station. Little four year old LTB is tall for his age and just made the forty inch height limit on this and other rides, including the TOWER OF TERROR. Hands up in the air make for a more dramatic drop down the watery slide, but on the repeat run, LTB was heard to say, “I am so not holding my hands up this time.” Semi and I did indeed hold up ours, to enhance the scare factor. You might notice that LTB is holding on to the rail and gritting his teeth, what a trooper.
Being away from the garden at any time during spring, summer and fall is difficult. It is never far from the edge of thought, no matter how much fun is being had while on a trip filled with such enjoyable pastimes. The weather was chilly when we left home with warm clothes and furry booties needed. The return temperature was a balmy 93F. Things always happen in the garden during our absence. Long awaited flowers bloom and are finished, totally missed by the camera lens. The early daffodils are done, scorched into history by those high temps. But the hellebores and later daffs are playing their roles, and the trees are just in the very beginning stages of leafing out. Spring was not missed entirely, only the opening act.
These beautiful yellow flowered trees were noticed in many commercial areas. None were as large as the specimens in this setting, the Harry P. Leu Gardens. There was no sign identifying them. Does anyone know the name? Added: Many thanks to the alert and early bird Lotusleaf of Garden Tropics for giving the correct ID on this tree, Tabebuia chrysotricha, Golden Trumpet Tree.
This garden was about the trees, and magnificent they were. A lineup of Camphor trees, signage included, was breathtaking. Each trunk was festooned with resurrection ferns and bromeliads, adding to the pleaure of gazing upon their girth.
The eptiome of the south eastern US is a Live Oak tree, Quercus virginiana dripping with spanish moss. This is not a true moss at all, but rather a bromeliad, Tillandsia usneiodes, that favors these branches from which to view the world.
Back home is the most wonderful place in the world to be. There is a whole season of delight just around the corner. The steady stream of blooming has begun in earnest. The primrose path has opened for business. The weeds have been very opportunistic, but will soon be covered by the emerging foliage of perennials and shrubs. It is too late to pull them, the seed has been set and flung. Better luck next year for catching them before that happens. What is done, is done. Now we will sit back and enjoy the show. The Think sign is another Blodgett purchase, handily the stake could be taken apart for vehicular safety. Click here to see the best video I could find of the incomparable Aretha in the Blues Brothers movie singing about my new sign.
Maybe this will help identify our vacation spot.
A special thank you to the vivacious Monica the Garden Faerie for thinking up Mish Mash Mondays.