December Blossoms

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Sasanqua blossoms brighten our December

We expect poinsettias in the winter. Their bright red leaves we call blossoms are part of the Christmas scene and we treasure them. But I’m always surprised and amazed by the many other flowers that bloom “in the dead of winter” here in south Georgia. They seem to flourish when the days grow shorter and dreary clouds descend. This year they seem even brighter and more abundant.

Sasanqua trees are the prettiest I’ve ever seen them. White blossoms shine amongst dark shiny leaves. Those trees are a beautiful shape with twisting limbs that have been greatly enjoyed by our little climbers. We also have a sasanqua with pink blooms. Both trees drop carpets of blooms under their shade like flower girls sprinkling rose petals for a bride. I see these sasanquas all around brightening our winter days. By the way, the sasanquas are often used for grafting camellias and are sometimes called sasanqua camellias.

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Yellow jasmine vine on our mailbox pine tree.

Yellow jasmine blooms smile from a vine hugging our mailbox tree. The vine has bloomed off and on all year and here in mid-December it is flourishing again totally unaware that it might get frostbitten.

Roses are subdued but still blooming. The sight of a row of knockout roses blooming in front of our Christmas-decorated house makes me smile. The roses have not been told by sun, wind, or temperature that they might need to pull their heads in for a few weeks and take a nap.

Lantana makes a bright yellow corner around the quiet butterfly house. I would say the butterfly house is obeying winter’s threat that inmates should hibernate. But butterflies, even when warmed by September sunshine, don’t like our little slim-windowed butterfly house. They hover over the lantana but I’ve never seen one enter the house.

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Yesterday-today-tomorrow bush with one winter bloom!

The most interesting bloom in the yard, though, is that of the yesterday-today-tomorrow bush. All spring, all summer, through September, October, and November I’ve looked for any sign of bud or bloom and been disappointed. This little bush claims to be a summer bloomer. Last year it displayed for months its beautiful blue flowers that change to darker blue, then purple earning its name “yesterday-today-tomorrow.” But after all the warm sunny days when it could have bloomed, now, in the middle of December, this little bush puts forth one very small blossom. It’s almost as if it’s saying, “I’m sorry. I’ll do better next year.”

Amanda and I went Christmas shopping yesterday in Tallahassee, a wonderful fun day. As we drove down we exclaimed over the marvelous display of wildflowers in the highway’s median. Colors of pink and lavender and white blanketed a nice long stretch. You would have thought it was spring!

Though we seldom, very seldom, see snow in Cairo, we enjoy the beauty of December blossoms. In case I don’t get another blog out before then, Merry Christmas from the blooming south!

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