Saturday, June 2, 2012

Gardening with Fickle Ma Nature

Last year I bought a plant in the herb section called "Bee Balm".  Just the leaves themselves smell wonderful!  The tag bragged that the "beautiful red flowers will attract both bees and hummingbirds".  I could hardly wait.

I had to wait a year.  The first year, no matter how much water, fertilizer and TLC I shared with this plant, it barely grew.

Last week I saw huge "balls" on the ends of the stem.  FINALLY!  I waited all week, trying not to peak and envisioning those flaming red flowers.

And here it is.

Do not adjust your monitor.  
The flowers really are purple!

A shot from the top down.

While I had the camera out, Hubby noted that our Hydrangeas were out in all their glory.  When I was a kid, most homes seemed to have blue hydrangeas, a staple of effortless southern gardening.  As a little girl, I remember using a huge single bloom as a "bridal bouquet" during pretend weddings.  (Although I don't recall any "pretend grooms").

I was so shocked when we moved into our old country farmhouse when NONE could be found.  So of course, I planted 3.  Here are two of them.

Part of the fun of these flowers is that the color of the bloom relates to the amount of lime in the soil.   The majority of ours our blue, which is nice because I was never partial to the pink ones.  And yet, the only living flower I took home from my aunt's funeral two years ago (the one in the nursing home I told you so much about) was a pink hydrangea. My aunt's favorite color was purple, a fact I thought the person who'd sent the plant should know.  Maybe he just called and said, "Send a plant".  Either way, I grudgingly planted it, watered it, shook my head with a sigh and walked away.  I thought it might truly end up with my aunt.

It bloomed this week.

Yep.  It's purple.

It may be hard to tell in the photo (because the lighting was all wrong), but the blossom in the shadow is the exact shade of purple as the rest of the flowers on that plant.

I wasn't fond of purple as a kid.  The aunt loved purple so much her wheelchair was purple!  (We donated it to the nursing home and they grinned from ear to ear).

But seems purple is a color that's showing up a lot in my life just now, from flowers to our charity's logo, which is a nod to the Purple Heart which wounded soldiers receive.

Now if I could just stop cutting corners so close and leaving purple bruises on my knee.


savannah said...

how did i miss this, sugar? i swear, if my thumb wasn't a registered plant killer, i'd try my hand at hydrangeas!! they're my favorite plants and why i didn't mind moving from downtown. i should try, right? xoxoxox

hope said...

You've been busy with birthday partying. :)

Yep, plant and water; occasional fertilizer and they keep coming back bigger!