Thursday, July 31, 2008

Genetics Redux

Not quite two years ago I published a post entitled “Genetics,” which was a brief pictorial essay on the flower bed just a short distance from my door. The blooms in the flower bed were of great interest to me, especially where the color permutations on the blossoms were concerned. Now fast-forward a few months (or so) from the referenced post… whereupon some clue-free folks hired to maintain the grounds here at Beautiful La Hacienda Trailer Park came by and literally ripped out the entire flower bed… flowers, weeds and all… being completely unable to differentiate between weeds and flowers. “Well, there goes the neighborhood,” or so I thought. And it was true…as there were NO flowers in the bed whatsoever last year.

But I misunderestimated the power of Mother Nature. The flowers are back this year… in abundance. There are changes, though. The blooms don’t seem quite so vibrant, and the colors of the flowers are different. Slightly different, to be sure, but different still. Here are a few shots I took earlier this morning…





The last photo shows the flower bed in a longer view. The interesting thing about these flowers is they only open up fully in the morning. And then they close up tight as the heat of the day intensifies. You’ll also notice, Gentle Reader, that I’ve refrained from calling these flowers by their proper name. There’s a good reason for that (aside from the fact we’ve not been formally introduced): I don’t know what they are. Your assistance would be most appreciated if you know their proper name.

Finally… I really ought to get out there and weed the damned bed myself this year…before the onslaught of the clue-free “gardeners.” But… OTOH… I haven’t seen those folks around the park at all this year. Perhaps they’ve moved on to bigger and better things. One would hope.

Update: I went and read the comments to my original “Genetics” post... and found that Original Reader Becky informed me the flowers are called “Four O'Clocks.” It's a good thing my... um... fingers (yeah, that's it) aren't as short as my memory.

13 comments:

  1. Four o'clocks are old flower and have been around since my day one. My mother-in-law has gobs of them that come back each year. I suspect by seed. I like them and most old fashioned flowers.

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  2. Great Pictures Buck!

    The genetics of things are interesting. It is also interesting to me that some of the flowers blended and some of them are half and half.

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  3. Yeah, the half-and-half flowers are neat.

    I've got a huge weed growing in my flowerbed - I think maybe it's a gooseberry bush? - but I don't have the heart to uproot it. It's grown so quickly and flourished, and it does look kind of cool.

    Hmmmmm... I think I may have found my subject to write about over the weekend :-)

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  4. Great post and pictures. When I was little my grandparents use to blend different kinds of apple trees together.

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  5. Four o'clocks are impossible to kill. They produce a lot of seeds that go everywhere. I had these flowers growing in a flower bed, but wanted to plant something else. Husband kindly dug out the dirt (4 or 5 wheelbarrows full) and dumped it in the alley in some low spots along the fence. Next year our property line was covered in masses of four o'clocks. One neighbor wanted to know why I planted flowers in the alley!

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  6. Is it just me, or do we appreciate Flowers and the like, as well grow older?

    Good Photo Work Buck.

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  7. I love the half and half one. I have to disagree with Deborah, though. Four O'Clocks are not impossible to kill. I think in my case they are impossible to get to grow! I gave up on gardening long ago.

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  8. I will have to tell you about my grandmothers flower garden sometime, but she did grow Four O'Clocks. I remember as a child standing outside to see if they really closed up at 4 PM.

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  9. I left you something over at my place!

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  11. The difference between a "weed" and a "flower" is perceived desirability on the part of the person doing the plant-killing... that's all.

    The wildflowers that grow in the mountains of North Carolina beat any carefully cultivated European-style flower garden that I've ever seen.

    Great pix (and post), Buck.

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  12. Glad you got color back Buck. ;-)

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  13. Abe: I had never encountered four o'clocks (knowingly) until I moved here. Which, I suppose, proves you're never too old to learn, eh?

    Ash sez: It is also interesting to me that some of the flowers blended and some of them are half and half.

    Precisely! The permutations were just wild two years ago, less so this year... but still interesting.

    Jim sez: Hmmmmm... I think I may have found my subject to write about over the weekend :-)

    Hoo-boy! Monday oughtta be a good read over at your place, then, Jim! (As it always is...)

    Jenn: I would imagine the process of mating of different varieties takes a lot longer with trees!

    Deborah: That's both funny, yet very cool, about your alley. But even alleys need love, too!

    Pat sez: Is it just me, or do we appreciate Flowers and the like, as well grow older?

    Maybe it's you, Pat... I gardened in every house I've owned, and that stretches back into the '70s. I had beautiful roses in my first house (in Oregon).

    Becky: Black thumb, eh?

    Lou: Your grandmother's garden sounds like a post-in-waiting...

    Jenn: Thanks for the "Arte y Pico." It took me a lil time to back-track and figure out what it is, but I'm humbled and honored!

    Barry sez: The difference between a "weed" and a "flower" is perceived desirability on the part of the person doing the plant-killing... that's all.

    Ah... the ol "rose in the wheat field!" This is true, Barry, but the folks that "weeded" the flower beds around here had a scorched-earth policy: nothing survived. Period. And I hear ya about wild flowers vs. formal gardens. I much prefer the former, too.

    Doc sez: Glad you got color back Buck. ;-)

    Thanks, Doc. I'm working on gaining weight, now. ;-)

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