Cherry Mash-Mish Monday


There has been a lot of activity, of the offline type, around the Fairegarden lately. In fact we have been as busy as… well, you know the saying.


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.


Back on the road, A large estate garden, open to the public was on the itinerary. Alone this time, the paths were wandered with cameras in tow.


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.


Please join The Financier and LTB in waving bye bye to the wonderful World of Disney, Orlando, Florida style and say hello to spring.

***

A special thank you to the vivacious Monica the Garden Faerie for thinking up Mish Mash Mondays.

Frances

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36 Responses to Cherry Mash-Mish Monday

  1. gardeningasylum says:

    Hi Frances,Sounds like a wonderful trip! I’m sorry thatyour head couldn’t make the trip back with you, but the facial pot is awfully nice too. “Think” is a good sign and a great song πŸ™‚
    Cyndy

    Hi Cyndy, thanks so much. I will be thinking about that head for some time to come, and the great time we had. πŸ™‚
    Frances

  2. lotusleaf says:

    Your trip seems to have been wonderful.The trees festooned with spanish moss look strange! The yellow flowered tree might be a Tabebuia- the flowers are the same colour and shape, and they are flowering all over the city now.

    Thanks Lotusleaf, I googled the tree name you provided and it seems to be the one! There are many varieties and it is very common in central Florida where we stayed. There are non latin names like Tree Of Gold which are the perfect description and might be what most people know them by. The Oaks with the spanish moss are otherworldly to me, having never lived in a place where they were common. Seeing the mature specimens at this lovely garden was transporting.
    Frances

  3. Edith Hope says:

    Dear Frances, Gosh, what a lot you packed into your break! You all obviously had a wonderful time en famille, and in reading this I too feeel that I have been on holiday with you all. So much to see and to think about. I loved the sculpted head and would have no problem placing it in the garden. The huge trees in the open garden are so impressive, but no less so are your own hellebores – at the peak of perfection I should say judging from the picture. And coping with the heat of 90F+. Is this normal for the time of year?

    You will, I am sure, understand if I pass on some of the rides!!

    Hi Edith, thanks. It was a whirlwind trip, very little down time, but loads of family fun. The Leu garden was full of magnificent trees and a tropical stream area that made me want to jump on a vine and shout a la Tarzan. That head was amazing, it looked exactly like stone with a nice patina even, but the smaller pot and think sign are probably a better fit for my garden. The hellebores are having their best year ever, old leaves attached and all. These high temps are setting records and are way above normal. There is a worry about the heat burning the fragile spring blooms, it has happened before. Tulips cannot last in them and the knot garden spring greens are fully budded. I hope it becomes more seasonal soon. And finally, if you saw the lines for the rides you would most certainly pass. πŸ™‚
    Frances

  4. Randy says:

    Francis,
    I really liked the head it would have been great in your garden! Glad you had a fun Easter!

    Thanks Randy, it was a blast. Hope you had the same. πŸ™‚
    Frances

  5. Lzyjo says:

    Looks like a wonderful trip! I went with my grandparents at about the same age, my mom put a harness on me! Too bad you had to miss a moment at the Fairegarden, but it’s worth it to make memories.

    Thanks Lzyjo, it was a great time had by all. LTB was quite good, with several adults on the trip to the one child it was easy. I did use a harness for my third child, he often tried to give us the slip! HA
    Frances

  6. Lisa at Greenbow says:

    It looks like you had a delightful vacation. Nothing like getting out of the old routine to make you ‘think’ of all sorts of things to do in your garden. I love the blue pot. It gives a new meaning to blue nose. I big guy head would be fun to have too. Maybe some day we will see it situated in your garden someplace. Those huge trees were something to see no doubt. They are magnificent. Yes, it is fun to return to the garden anytime yet spring and summer always offers us surprises when we return. Welcome home.

    Thanks Lisa. It is good to get away, and for gardeners, there is never a good time to be apart from the garden. Good one on the blue nose! HA πŸ™‚
    Frances

  7. commonweeder says:

    Frances – what a wonderful family trip. Beautiful landscapes and riotous fun – especially with those fastpasses. I loved that Tree of Gold which I can’t grow here of course, but I am definitely going to get a witch hazel or cornus mas. Maybe both. I think my first daffodils will open today – so you can see where our season is.

    Thanks Pat. Those yellow flowered trees were everywhere, along with other more tropical things, but the garden waiting for me back home was the best sight of all. You must be so excited about the daffs starting, a very wonderful time of year after winter’s drab colors. πŸ™‚
    Frances

  8. Rose says:

    Looks like you had wonderful week, Frances! Being very afraid of heights, I don’t go on any rides that spin me around or plunge from great heights, but I remember standing by this flume ride trying to photograph my daughters as they rode down–I wound up with only photos of strangers:) Too bad the large head couldn’t come home with you; it might have caused a few accidents, though, as drivers gawked at it whizzing by on the highway:) It’s hard to leave home at this time of year, but your garden must have been busy in your absence–what a welcome home it is giving you!

    Thanks Rose. I too am afraid of heights, but roller coaster drops have never bothered me. A spinning ride or the worst, a gondola type thing that moves slowly are always avoided. Lucky for us that the park took photos, The Financier tried to get us but was unable to. The garden changed so much in just a week’s time, record heat made a huge impact on things. Weeds went wild! πŸ™‚
    Frances

  9. nancybond says:

    It’s pretty bad when your head won’t fit in the car. Heehee. Love all your new planters, especially that gorgeous blue. Yummy! Also, those camphor trees are incredible!

    Good one, Nancy, thanks! HA This head was so large, I was sure it was concrete or stone of some sort from the look and was amazed when I could pick it up easily. It seems like it would blow away! The line of trees was incredible, a very well thought out planting a very long time ago. πŸ™‚
    Frances

  10. Steve says:

    I suppose leaving the credit card behind is a bad idea, lol – fully knowing you’ll be visiting nurseries??? That yellow blooming tree is sooo intriguing. I have no idea what it is but – wow! Gorgeous pictures, Frances, as usual.

    Thanks Steve, but leaving the credit card behind is not an option for me anytime! Lotusleaf was correct about the tree, Tabebuia chrysotricha, quite common in the Orlando area. πŸ™‚
    Frances

  11. Tatyana says:

    Nose/mouth pot is awesome! Love the pics from Splash Mountain!

    Thanks Tatyana. The larger blue pot was also awesome, but too big, alas. Splash Mountain was a fave ride at the Disney World, if you ever get there. πŸ™‚
    Frances

  12. Pam/Digging says:

    Congrats on the bulbine acquisition. I’m sure it will do beautifully in a pot, and you can protect it in winter if need be.

    As you may know, we spent a week at Disney World recently too and rode everything, including the Tower of Terror, which just about did me in. I don’t mind the rolls and loops of coasters (though I do grip the rail tightly and never put my hands up), but free-fall scares the pants off me. Once on the Tower of Terror was quite enough, thank you very much. You guys look like you’re having so much fun on the flume ride!

    Thanks for that Pam. I agree completely about Tower of Terror. I couldn’t believe they would let such a little guy as LTB on such a thing, but they did check his height very carefully. He did not like it at all, and neither did I. I closed my eyes the whole time and waited for it to be over. Never again. On roller coasters, we do hang on except for the big drops, just so we don’t bump our fellow riders too much going sideways, with hands in the air. We all loved Splash Mountain and got soaking wet every time, part of the fun. πŸ™‚
    Frances

  13. Floridagirl says:

    Well, you were practically next door, looks like! I grew up just down the road from Disney and remember it being built. I see you have witnessed the glory of Florida’s spring harbinger…the Tabebuia tree. This to me is our version of the daffodil or the cherry tree. I recently wrote a post about it.

    Hi Florida Girl and welcome. I know too what living close to Disney is like, we were close to Disneyland in California for three years and went often. You do learn the best times to go, and when the lines are shortest on the bigger rides. Those Tabebuia trees were breathtaking, a daffodil in tree form! πŸ™‚
    Frances

  14. Alice Joyce says:

    Hi Frances,
    I want you to know that even when I can’t find the time to stop by and leave a comment, I think of you often and always have your Faire Garden on my mind (a favorite blog!).
    Busy! You do cover ground here. Re: your THINK sign… I once bought a flash card of some sort that states, simply: Then … It is mounted on a scented beeswax stand from a florish and is quite the conversation piece at dinner parties. I like the idea of a word, one word, to ponder.
    And on a garden note, my cupheas – perhaps I’ve already mentioned at some point – this winter has really taken its toll on them. One species seems to be making a comeback, but the cold coupled with heavy rain that hasn’t yet stopped seems to have killed off all the others:-((
    Happy Monday!

    Hi Alice, you are too sweet and thanks for the blog love! I am woefully behind on blog reading myself, but have always loved yours as well. The one word of Then is perfect and the scent sounds delightful. So sorry about your cupheas, I fear the worst for mine, but will replenish and treat them as annuals. The hummingbirds adore them and they are blooming machines for many months, worth the cost and effort. Happy Monday back to you, my friend. πŸ™‚
    Frances

  15. TC Conner says:

    I’ve never been. But may go, if I win the lottery.

    Love the perky-nosed blue pot!

    Hi TC, thanks. The larger pot just like that one was really cool, but this little chick is still large enough for plants to not get too thirsty during our hot dry summers, with the right plantings. If you win the lottery, Disney is not what I would recommend! England, my friend, sounds much better. Chelsea perhaps? πŸ™‚
    Frances

  16. Oh goodness…I would love a head like that in my garden, although I am not sure my husband would πŸ˜‰ I would love to know what the yellow flowered trees are too. They are just beautiful.

    Thanks Noelle, you reminded me that I needed to update the post with the name of the tree, Tabebuia, and a link to Lotusleaf for giving the ID. Maybe it would grow there, but might need more water than Arizona can offer since Florida has a high rainfall average. The Financier did not see this head, but I fear he might react the same way as your husband. It was way over the top, and would need proper staging to look right. And the female head for a matched set. One would need a large truck to get those two anywhere. πŸ™‚
    Frances

  17. noel says:

    what a great trip, i would have loved to see the leu garden in spring you captured it well….wonder if someone might sponsor the next garden blogger meeting in orlando…lots of spectacular gardens there πŸ™‚

    thanks for sharing your trip and photos – what fun!

    How sweet you are, Noel, thanks so much. Orlando does have tons of stuff to do, but don’t go there during spring break, way too many people. πŸ™‚
    Frances

  18. Gail says:

    Frances, What a fun time and Little LTB is a great age for Disney World…The photo of the unknown yellow flowering tree is delightful against that blue sky…Welcome home…and I know you’ve hit the ground running and the garden is calling you! gail

    Thanks Gail, it truly was fun and LTB was indeed exactly the perfect age for such an adventure. He was mouth agape in awe at every single thing Disney had to offer. I am super busy here, it seems the weather skipped ahead a couple of months in our one week absence!
    Frances

  19. My, my, you’ve been busy! Sounds like everybody had a marvelous spring break! Love that blue pot – such a clever design – and those yellow flowers against the deep blue sky took my breath away. Happy Easter. Happy Spring. πŸ™‚

    Thanks Kate, we have been busy and are even more so now trying to catch up at home. Glad you liked the pot and photo, the sky was so very blue that day, and the perfect backdrop for the yellow trumpets. A very happy spring and hope your Easter was great. πŸ™‚
    Frances

  20. Meredith says:

    What a lovely journey you took us on with you, Frances. I’ve been to Macon’s Cherry Blossom Festival, and it’s something else. You must have arrived there just at peak. πŸ™‚

    Those camphor trees were magnificent… but of course, the moss-draped live oaks have my heart. Thanks for the beautiful picture, almost like standing underneath them in reality!

    Hi Meredith, thanks so much for those sweet words. We only went through the interstate in Macon, but we could tell that these cherry trees were planted everywhere. A sea of baby pink blooms in all directions greeted visitors at 70 MPH. I can imagine the inner city with these trees. Being under the live oaks dripping with the moss was being transported to another place and time.
    Frances

  21. Les says:

    We went to Orlando several years ago and I had just as much fun looking at all the plants I can’t grow as I did on the rides.

    I agree Les, looking at plants is easily as much fun as the rides, with no waiting. πŸ™‚
    Frances

  22. That shot of the yellow flowering tree against the blue, blue sky is a tonic for one shivering in her basement studio, looking out at a cold, wet, blustery day.

    Thanks Ricki. Those yellow flowers were the brightest thing in the whole place, sunglasses needed! So sorry to hear about cold and blustery. It is the opposite of that here right now, but I believe we have a little cold snap coming. πŸ™‚
    Frances

  23. What a wonderful family trip. Do you know that I’ve been to DisneyWorld twice…to work! Yes, I was working for the computer software company and didn’t see much of anything except for restaurants at night.

    Love the “big guy” head! Too bad he didn’t make it home with you. It seems your garden is bursting with color.

    I can’t believe the heat wave. 90 degrees tomorrow! Not enough rain! What’s up with that? It’s spring…not summer!

    Thanks Cameron. The Disney experience was what we expected, having lived next to Disneyland when we were in California. This heat is awful, and so dry. We are hoping to see change soon, although it sure is nice to go out with the coffee in the mornings with no jacket, still in jammies in fact. πŸ™‚
    Frances

  24. Lola says:

    I’m with you Frances. Disney is only for kids—parents to spend $. Went once not again.
    I love the blue pot also. That head is something else. A shame you couldn’t tie it on top.

    Thanks Lola. The money being spent in that park is ridiculous. There are many more stores than rides now, not the way it used to be in Disneyland long ago. Spend, spend, spend. The pot is a fave, the think sign too. πŸ™‚
    Frances

  25. VW says:

    I’d like to take that handsome head home to keep me company in the garden! Yummy. And your glorious field of hellebores takes my breath away.
    RE spanish moss – we recently painted with a paint entitled Spanish Moss. You’d think it would be a very soft grey with a hint of green. No sir. Chocolate Chip Mint ice cream on my bedroom wall. We’re currently looking for a coverup color πŸ™‚

    He was a handsome brute VW! The hellebores are having their best year ever, for whatever reason. That color sounds dreadful, like a hospital room! Hope you can cover it quickly. lol πŸ™‚
    Frances

  26. chuck b. says:

    Oh, you would have been the coolest people in the South driving around with that giant head on top of your car!

    You mean we weren’t already the coolest people in the South? LOL I thought of you as soon as we saw the nose pot, it is so similar to your avatar, but upon study it seems just a little different. I wondered if it was the same mold. That nursery was the best for garden art and stuff I have ever seen. If you ever go to Orlando, look for it. πŸ™‚
    Frances

  27. kerri says:

    Great fun was had by all, I see, and lots of wonderful sights to be seen. Those yellow flowering trees are glorious!
    My favorite shot of all is the bright, cheerful faces of primroses blooming amid the other beauties in your fair spring garden, dear Frances.
    You and your hubby have created a beautiful spot in your little corner of the world.
    Glad you had such a wonderful time with your family.
    Happy spring!

    Thanks so much, Kerri. Seeing the primroses was the perfect greeting when we got home, one of my favorite views of the entire garden, right outside glass doors where I sit with the laptop. It draws me outside constantly. Happy spring to you as well, hope it is warm and nice where you are. πŸ™‚
    Frances

  28. Sweet Bay says:

    Frances I enjoyed your pictures both from DisneyWorld (?) and from your garden. Both the Golden Trumpet Tree and all of your Hellebores are magnificent.

    Thanks Sweet Bay. Glad you enjoyed both parts of the offerings. Yes, it was Disneyworld. πŸ™‚
    Frances

  29. Hi Frances, it’s always fun to get out and about a bit. And, yes, any kind of travel for me involves gardens in one form or another. I can’t believe that huge head isn’t stone; it really looks natural. Also love the think sign.

    Hi Monica, thanks. Even touching the big head it felt like stone, rough and textural. I believe it had been sitting outside for a long time and had developed that patina.
    Frances

  30. Grace says:

    Hi Frances~~ What a fun trip it must have been. To tell you the truth, my favorite photo is the one taken in your garden–the heuchera, moss wall with statue…delicious!

    Thanks Grace. That spot in the garden is giving great delight at the moment, it is good to be home. πŸ™‚
    Frances

  31. kimberly says:

    Such a great trip! Your photos are wonderful, too. I especially like the camphor trees…how amazing! And the stone bench gardens in the 3rd photo really caught my eye. The best are the photos of your family.. absolutely priceless! So glad you had a great time!

    Thanks Kimberly. I had to go back and look at the third photo. You must be referring to the hypertufa troughs? They have been a success story, even if some of the plants have died and been replaced over the years. As for the family shots, they are the most precious thing in the world. πŸ™‚
    Frances

  32. joey says:

    Welcome home (to where the heart is), dear Frances.

    Thanks Joey, you are so sweet. I was never so glad to be home as from this trip. πŸ™‚
    Frances

  33. You must have had a wonderful time at Disney world! Frances, I’ve just discovered molds for creating garden “heads.” Not sure if I’ll purchase one, but it was interesting to see them. πŸ™‚

    Thanks Shady, we did. Those molds sound great and lots of fun. Hope you get one and show us the results! πŸ™‚
    Frances

  34. Umm, I’m loving the bee and muscari pic! Two of my most favorite things!

    Thanks DG, the whole garden is a buzz at the moment. The cherry tree is positively humming, right outside my front door. So fun! πŸ™‚
    Frances

  35. Dee Nash says:

    You’ve been one busy traveling girl. Love the pot with the nose. So cute.~~Dee

    Thanks Dee. After sitting around like a bump on a log all winter, things really got hectic here quickly. Still trying to catch up in the house and garden.
    Frances

  36. tyziana says:

    Beautiful post, as always, Frances!
    I enjoy both reading and admiring your photos, but ……
    THAT SPELL THAT SHAFT Tillandsia !!!!!!
    is in your garden? is fantastic, a beautiful sight!
    Frances great!

    Thanks Tyziana. The live oak with the spanish moss is located in a large estate garden that I toured when in Florida on vacation. Those trees, and the tillandsia are not winter hardy where I live, sadly. Glad you enjoyed them anyway. πŸ™‚
    Frances

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