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boxes The View from My Cup

cupThe view from my cup…flowers. I’m a bit late planting flowers this year. The hot then cold then warm then cool weather has me off my usual schedule. And I find I miss my flowers around the house more than I would have imagined. The deck looks barren, the planter between the garage doors seems lonely and dry, and the front porch lacks color. So with a bit a time (and a chunk of change) invested, today is the day that all changes.

Planting summer flowers always brings memories of my mother and the times we shared planting flower beds and pots. It seems amazing that I can buy a certain plant and still remember where Mom used to plant them. Yesterday I bought lantanas, and I remember them lining the stone planter that surrounded our back patio. They were on the right side about half way down. Always.

The patio was huge, about forty feet long and fifteen feet deep. It was surrounded on three sides with a knee-high stone planter. With about sixty feet or so to fill with annuals, the buying and planting took a full day. The flower box was partially shaded and some was in full sun, so the assortment of plants was wide ranging.

The shady section usually had an abundance of begonias. They were lovely, but required deadheading to keep them blooming all season. Guess whose job that was? I loathe begonias. Petunias were also planted in abundance. They also needed deadheading. Petunias are sticky when you pinch off their wrinkled, spent blooms. Not a fan of those either.

Each year I get the White Flower Farm catalog in the mail. I get zillions of emails from them all year, but there is a definite pleasure in thumbing through the catalog over and over again. They have plants I’ve not heard of, and flowers in colors that put the box store selections to shame. This year an heirloom begonia (yes, I remember I loathe them) specially bred to have huge blooms is selling for over sixty dollars each! Someone I know is rather glad I’m not a fan of the begonia.

So today, I know Mom is smiling. And she is with me, laughing, as I see myself looking much like her. Dirt crusted under my nails, shirt smudged with soil, hair in sweaty ringlets and glasses sliding down my nose. Holding the trowel, I push my glasses up with the back of my hand. That’s a classic Mom gesture.

P.S. Mom…I bought a few begonias this year in your honor.