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Flower fun facts

Published June 23. 2012 09:01AM

Roses are red, Violets are blue, This is the week I saw the orange Ditch Lily in bloom.

Driving home from work yesterday, I noticed the beautiful orange Ditch Lilies blooming. OK. Maybe they were blooming for a few days already, but I only noticed them yesterday. Maybe I had less on my mind as I traveled home or maybe God just opened my eyes to them because He thought I needed a little beauty in my life.

I was curious about why I see them along the roads and why they grow in large clumps. So I visited my old friend, Google. Google said that Tiger Lilies, or Day Lilies or Ditch Lilies, propagate underground through tubers and roots. But I couldn't find anything about how they got there in the first place.

I had some in my flower garden at home and I know they propagated until they almost took over the whole garden. But I know how they got there, because I planted them. So I wonder how they get to all these spots alongside the roadways? Are there animals that dig up the tubers and roots, eat them, carry them to other areas? Is there a Johnny Ditch Lily out there who plants them for others to admire? Does anybody out there know?

Last night I finally got some flowers planted around the pool. It looks so pretty and I was enjoying the sight when Harry threw a wrench in my reverie when he asked, "How much did your flowers cost this year?"

He saw the look on my face and quickly retreated muttering, "Forget I asked."

At least I bought flowers that seem to survive. I love marigolds and always planted them. But a few years ago, something ate every one, right down to the ground. I thought it might have been a rabbit. Harry had trapped some and released them at the Eldred Beagle Club. Thinking it was a fluke, I planted them again the following year. Same thing. I thought I read somewhere, skunks like marigolds. Harry wasn't about to trap any of them. So, the last couple of years ... no marigolds.

In my Google search, I came across this site where people wrote in asking the same question. A few people said that slugs love marigolds. And we definitely had slugs. Another person said she saw robins do a number on her marigolds but they could have been looking for the slugs. I loved this response ..."I'll throw a few slugs up on the roof and the birds enjoy the tasty tidbits." Now that sounds like a fun summertime activity the whole family could enjoy!

Another person said earwigs love marigolds.

I hadn't seen an earwig at our house for quite some time. (Maybe because I haven't planted any marigolds?) But this week, I've killed about five of them. They like dark damp areas and wet soil. Well, we've had a lot of rain so, I've got a damp basement and wet soil.

Have you ever heard that they got their name because they crawl in people's ears and lay eggs in their brains which kills them? Yeah. Me too. Well, according to the expert etymologists, that is just a myth. If one should crawl in your ear, it will only cause some discomfort but no real harm.

Whew! Good to know!

Man, I really got off the track there. Back to flowers.

In my Google search, I came across some facts about flowers.

Did you know that roses are related to apples, raspberries, cherries, peaches, plums, nectarines, pears and almonds? Yeah! Me either!

Tulip bulbs were more valuable than gold in Holland in the 1600s. (I think they should be the worldwide currency now and then I could just grow money in my own backyard! They can also be substituted for onions in a recipe. Just thought you'd like to know in case you run out of onions one day.)

The largest flower in the world is the titan arums, which produce flowers 10 feet high and 3 feet wide. The flowers smell of decaying flesh and are also known as corpse flowers. (This would be the perfect flower to buy and put in your guest room when the in-laws come to visit.)

Almost 60 percent of fresh-cut flowers grown in the U.S. come from California. (But that's not why there were Flower Children in the 60s.)

Dandelions might seem like weeds, but the flowers and leaves are a good source of vitamins A and C, iron, calcium and potassium. One cup of dandelion greens provides 7,000-13,000 I.U. of vitamin A. (And just one cup of dandelion wine can provide a heck of a buzz.)

Scientists discovered the world's oldest flower in 2002, in northeast China. The flower, named Archaefructus sinensis bloomed around 125 million years ago and resembles a water lily.

Which brings us back to lilies.

Matthew 6:28 says "And why are you worried about clothing? Observe how the lilies of the field grow; they do not toil nor do they spin, yet I say to you that not even Solomon in all his glory clothed himself like one of these."

It's so true. I could never dress myself as beautifully as God dresses Nature. This week Nature's haute couture is Ditch Lily orange. I can't wait to see what Nature wears next week!

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