Wednesday, June 6, 2007

What's in Bloom?

Several years ago, when I was a garden docent at the Huntington, a volunteer wrote a popular column called "What's in Bloom?" Since gardening, one of my passions, is now a forbidden fruit, I'll do the same thing that I do when I can't stomach food - I'll write about it, starting with my own version of "What's in Bloom (and in fruit)" in our back yard.

I'm a big fan of David Austin English roses and have a dozen varieties in our rose garden, including my favorite, the Gertrude Jekyll shown above. I love the way the flowers grow in clusters and ruffle like a peony in the center. But the best part is the intoxicating fragrance. You'll have to come by for a whiff.

Our apricot tree is more prolific than ever. Every year I hope to "manage" the crop, but each year the same thing happens: hundreds of overripe fruits fall to the ground. I'm determined that this will be the year that more fruit is devoured by humans than by squirrels and birds. Between freecycle, this blog and some new recipes I've found, I'm sure to accomplish that goal.

I came close to purging our plum tree this year. I figured the ancient, scraggly tree had come to the end of its life because it hadn't produced fruit for four years. But this year we got a miraculous surprise. It's bearing hundreds of baby plums that promise to turn into the juiciest, sweetest, messiest fruit of the season.

Now it's your turn to tell me what's in bloom in your yard or patio.


SAMO Calling said...

Did you say APRICOTS? I'm there!

Did you ever keep in touch with the Dais's?

Karen said...

Didn't you publish in the LA Times on the subject of gardening? I seem to recall at least one article ...

Obviously, you have many passions, all of which seem to bear fruit!!! If only there were a recipe for that!

denise said...

I'll take some of each, please? Yummy.

I have a bumper crop of lemons it seems all year long - want to swap? I also have a miniature cumquat (sp) tree that produces quit a bit for something so small.

I grew up with fruit trees at my parents', my aunt's and my grandparents'. I don't remember buying fruit very often back then and it all tasted so much better!!!!

Susan Carrier said...

When the apricots and plums ripen, I'll shout, "Come and get 'em!"

Yep - a gardening essay in the LA Times launched my career as a freelance writer.

Suzy Keleher said...

Well, we have about 20 rose bushes blooming gorgeous blossoms from Texas yellow to Queen Elizabeth pink. Our climbing roses are so gloriously lipstic red and they bloom in their own bouquet- like clusters. The pale pink camillias just finished their enchanting course. I like to bring them in and arrange them in crystal bowls of water. Blood oranges are heavy on the tree. Some people say they are the best they have ever eaten. The perfume of my climbing honeysuckle fills the house because they are right by the front door. My stately willow tree had to be trimmed back earlier this year but it is still my "happy tree" as it greens thicker and thicker each new day. These beauties are a joy to get up to every morning and a welcome every arrival home from work. Love you so much, Suze

SAMO Calling said...

Hey I feel Susan's Farmer's Market coming on.....I can offer up Jeff's little braeburn apples and juicy naval oranges in return. Although season's will be different. The oranges are so cute and tiny right now and the apples are just beautiful promising blossoms.

Susan Carrier said...

Suzie, Your yard sounds glorious!

We could start a farmers' market, couldn't we? Blood oranges, lemons, apricots, peaches, appples, kumquats and plums. Not to mention the tomatoes and Japanese eggplant that will soon be ripe.

Piper Robert said...

In a few weeks, the green tomatoes will be ready. I love fried green tomatoes. Grandma made the world's best. I remember grabbing "hot off the skillet" fried green tomatoes and throwing them between 2 slices of homemade bread. Wow!!! Fried green tomatoes.......yum. When was the last time you had fried green tomatoes?

Please put me on your apricot list.

p.s. You should tell everyone about catching the cellar house on fire.

Karen said...

Why is gardening forbidden fruit for you now?

Susan Carrier said...

Why is gardening a no-no?

A handful of soil contains hundreds of thousands of infection-creating bacteria and mold cells.

I thought that I could get away with pruning the roses, but that's also a no-no because the flowers could also contain mold and I shouldn't take the risk of cutting mysefl on the thorns.

Karen said...

Wow. I wouldn't have thought of that in a million years. But at least you can enjoy the fruits of your garden! By the way, I have a persimmon tree. It won't bear fruit until the fall, but I never know what to do with the bounty. Any ideas or recipes? The persimmons on our tree are the squat ones that are never too tart, not the rounder ones that are really tart until they fully ripen.