Archive for the ‘Flowers’ Category

~~~Like a hell-broth boil and bubble~~~

Macbeth Act 4, Scene 1

Not altogether weird, but definitely sisters, Hedydd and Panthy got up to a bit of brewing in kitchen, preparing for the possibility of a sniffle this rainy summer. A fire-cider is not too different than the old family cure-all, hot lemonade – a great deal more chopping and many more ingredients, however. The kitchen smelled as aromatically, even if a bit heavy on the garlic…and really, is that a bad thing?

Fire 7

The rosemary fresh from the garden was fragrant, but the jalapeños made even painted eyes water, poor Hedydd!

Fire 8

Layers of horseradish, onion, garlic, turmeric, jalapeño and ginger.

Topped with lemon juice and apple cider vinegar, the cider must mature for a month in a cool place. Fingers inadvertently dipped while adjusting layers and sampled afterward found the concoction already bright and tasty.

Fire Cider 6

It’ll cure what ails you, no doubt.


The Wiregrass Hitties and Mad for the Farthing Crowd tried this recipe for their first brewing of Fire Cider:



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They begin arriving, so it seems, the very day after Christmas. Every year. Relentlessly. Full of temptations no gardener or hope-to-be gardener can possibly resist. Before the last gasp of an Alabama winter, the stacks pile up on the odd counter or coffee table. If hidden, they call to you in an achingly sweet chorus, fluttering their gaily colored pages, making impossible promises, weaving dreams too fantastical to utter aloud.

“Horticultural Materials or the Seduction of the Seed Catalog”


Paisley dog-ears the page, marking the choice of Green Wizards for this year’s garden.

No one is immune to the appeal, least of all the Mad for the Farthing Crowd. Since they share the same sort of vascular system as do these beauties, one can understand the draw. And all the dollies love pretty flowers.  However, they do feel that these seedy snares ought arrive in plain brown wrappers. Recycled plain brown wrappers, of course.

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Three or four days of genuine Winter had caused modest consternation in the garden. The Lavender and the Pineberries had relocated to the front porch, where the brick wall, soaking up sun during the afternoon, could then release the necessary warmth during the frigid nights. In the evening, the pots and boxes were gently tucked in, every care being taken to secure their safety until the temperature had risen in the morning to above freezing.


“Your Sweetness Is My Weakness”

The Pineberries appeared to have enjoyed all the attention. They began producing fat berries, flourishing as the weather warmed. Hitty Hedydd thought it prudent to document this fruity phenomenon before the Mockingbirds, never ones to miss an opportunity, took advantage of this January surprise.

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If that is how God clothes the grass of the field,which is here today and tomorrow is thrown into the fire, will he not much more clothe you-you of little faith? 

                                                                                       Matthew 6:30

On the north side of the gray house lie both Nathaniel’s Bower and the “Oh, Ye of Little Faith” Garden. Nathaniel’s Bower hosts the fig trees, already sleepily shedding their leaves as days grow shorter.  In contrast, the “Oh, Ye” Garden is full of life; home, at the moment, to the ridiculously tall and spindly coreopsis, some of them eight feet tall! The Hittys love to lounge in the window that overlooks the garden, especially during Autumn, watching as fat bumble bees, migrating butterflies and jeweled hummingbirds zip, flutter and dart among the brilliant orange blossoms.  Snip thinks rambling through the flowers is even better.


Tiptoe through the tickweed…

The dollies also enjoy the gentle taunts and jabs of the neglectful gardener crowing that the “weeds” had once again blossomed, as predicted, despite the faithlessness of others ready to wreak havoc with their rakes and hoes.

The garden had evolved, slowly, over several years from a tidy garlic, basil and pepper patch to this wild, neighbor-provoking tangle. With a handful of wildflower seeds, waves of poppies, cosmos, sunflowers and now, tickweed had graced the garden, providing nourishment for travelers and entertainment for the residents.

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“…most dear actors, eat no onions nor garlic, for we are to utter sweet breath”

A  Midsummer Night’s Dream, Act 4, Scene 2


 The “live and let live” garlic chives spread their cheer copiously throughout the garden. It is hard to uproot something that volunteers such a pretty flower, even if its fragrance is not as sweet as some might like, so the plants are left to sprout where they may, and year after year, surprises are found…and cherished.

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In 2007, during their time in the United Kingdom, the Wiregrass Hitties and Mad for the Farthing Crowd enjoyed time with friends new and old.

Outside Looking In 1

Palestine’s tea party has brought a visitor from the bottom of the garden to the cottage window. Poor little fellow.

Hitty Dixee Serves Our Fairy A Piece of Cake 1

After bringing him in from the rain, Dixee serves the wee fairy a slice of cake.

Warwick's Untidy Accident 1

The party moved into the main house, but Warwick, hoping for another piece of the bombe, lingered at the table…and had an untidy accident. Oh, dear!

Help for Warwick 1

Help is on the way, Warwick!

Crumb Tidiers 1

More friends, Bubble and Squeak, the Sugar Mice from Oxford, arrive in time to help with the tidying.

Late for Tea 1

Yorick, “late” as usual, is the last guest to Hitty’s table. All are welcome.


We like to play a game at times, when we vacation with the Wiregrass Hitties and Mad for the Farthing Crowd. We did travel with the tea set, the dishes and a few accessories. To play the game, however, we limited ourselves to a pound apiece and whatever treasures could be found in our cottage or contrived from whatever was to hand. The table was constructed with two soft-boiled egg cups and a small cutting board. The “tablecloth” is two hankies found at a charity shop, as is the lace overlay. The flowers, wish I knew what they were, grew inside the glass porch in Westgate Cottage, Warwick. We whooped when we found the thimble at another charity shop – the ladies there rejoiced with us.

Further adventures with Yorick may be found here.

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Wildflower Garden A

Bald Rock Collage C

Cheaha State Park



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