FLOWER and GARDEN
EVENTS & ATTRACTIONS
from Kath of Homespun
Wildflowers of Western Kentucky is a
full-color guide to the wildflowers of western and
central Kentucky and surrounding regions, with photos and
descriptions of more than 200 wildflower species. The new
look for the site is complete! The individual wildflowers
have now been classified by season. There are now 18-36
thumbnails per page rather than 50, in order to speed up
download times over slower modems.
Clicking on any thumbnail on any
page (except this one) will bring up a full-sized
picture, name, scientific name and a brief description.
The Kentucky Native Plant Society's web site is now
completed and online! Until we can find a permanent home
for it, the site will be hosted here. Thanks for visiting
Wildflowers of Western Kentucky.
from Sue of Homespun
Tour Home Page
This site offers historical and
cultural information about Nottingham, England, the
setting for the story of Robin Hood, as well as other
culturally significant events.
Nottinghamshire Covers 844 square
miles. Its North-South axis is 52 miles long.
Nottinghamshire is located in central England in the area
known as the Midlands. Lowland plains dominate the
southern part of the county with the accent on
Agriculture. The North-Western part is dominated by the
Pennine hills. The major water feature of the county is
the River Trent. Which flows for over 50 miles through
the county and it is no accident that the two
historically significant sites of Nottingham and Newark
were built overlooking the Trent.
The geology of the shire is a mixture of magnesium
limestone in the North changing to sandstone in the
south. In fact the limestone in the Mansfield Area
supplied stone used in the re-building of the Houses of
Parliament in the early 19th Century.
from Debbie of Homespun
"Here in the San Francisco Bay Area (well, east of
the Bay Area), we have Daffodil Hill. It is so gorgeous
you wouldn't believe it! Absolutely exploding with
daffodils (and tulips here and there!)."
Amador County, California
A project which has its origin in a family garden has
today become a full scale operation attracting thousands
annually to the site known as Daffodil Hill near Jackson,
which is 50 miles from Sacramento or Stockton.
Our grandparents, Arthur Burbeck McLaughlin and Lizzie
Van Vorst McLaughlin, established McLaughlin Ranch, now
Daffodil Hill, in 1887. Prior to this, they owned
property just behind Daffodil Hill. At this site our
mother, Mary McLaughlin Lucot, was born in 1881
our uncle, Jesse McLaughlin, was born at the Daffodil
Hill site in 1893.
The ranch was purchased from an old Dutchman, Pete
Denzer, who had planted around the homesite daffodils
from his native land. These yellow blooms were
Lizzies most prized possession, and she divided and
replanted the bulbs each year to increase the size of
At the time the ranch was purchased it was used as a
way-station for teamsters and travelers using the road
from Kit Carson Pass over what is now known as California
State Highway Route 88. The McLaughlin's continued the
way station, renting rooms and serving meals (breakfast
for 25 cents) to the travelers and providing feed and
shelter for their animals. For many years the loft of the
barn was used for "Saturday Night" dances at
Arthur was the supervisor of his district in Amador
County; this with mining, farming and
"inn-keeping" kept the family in food,
clothing and supplies. They also hauled logs to the lower
county to help in the building of the mines and
manufactured charcoal for use in nearby gold mine.
Arthur passed away in 1912 and soon thereafter in 1923,
the 17 room, 2½ story house burned and a small cabin was
built for Lizzie. The original bunk house and larder room
has been remodeled into living quarters for the present
caretakers. Lizzie passed away in 1935.
Following their mothers death, Jessie and Mary
decided to plant other daffodils in her memory. Daffodils
were planted every year, just a few at a time and
soon people began to stop to admire the blooms. As groups
of tourists grew, so grew the plantings until the few
hundred planted annually, grew to a few thousand. Now
every year we plant from 5 to 6 thousand new bulbs
both daffodils and tulips. There are approximately 6
acres in daffodils 300 varieties and 400,000
blooms. The number planted depends upon the donations we
receive each year from the tourists there is no
admission charge, but we do have old yellow teakettles
and pots around that anyone, if they so desire, may place
Jesse and Mary carried on this planting, with the help of
Marys children, until 1981 when Jesse passed away.
Mary passed away in 1973. It is now overseen by
Marys two children, Arthur Lucot and Mary Lucot
Ryan, their spouses, her grandchildren, great
grandchildren and great-great grandchildren. These
generations are still planting thousands of new bulbs
each year in memory of their parents, grandparents,
great-grandparents and great-great grandparents.
There are 540 acres at the Daffodil Hill part of the
ranch. We have planted walnuts to help pay for the taxes
and other operation expenses. This is strictly a family
project. Judge Martin Ryan, Marys husband, does the
tractor work on weekends and evenings Art Martin
and our friend, Joe Bustillos, do the pruning and
cleanup. Since our walnuts trees have grown beautifully
and the crop is too much for a "family outing"
to pick them, we must depend on hired crews to help us
pick our crop. We still, however, knock our trees by
hand; truck them to a commercial processor to be hulled
and dried and delivered to Diamond Walnut Association
before December 1st. We have approximately 1500 bearing
November, December and perhaps the first of January, we
do our planting. Arthur has ordered the bulbs earlier in
the year and another "extended family outing"
gets the daffodils planted. January and February we do
clean up, bench and table repair, fence work and some
painting and a lot of weeding and raking of leaves. Come
mid-March, were ready for guests, where once again
you will find the extended family and friends donating
their time to say "hello", direct traffic, sell
postcards and answer questions.
Each year, from approximately mid-March to mid-April,
seven days a week from 9:00 a.m. until 5:00 p.m., weather
permitting, the Hill is open to tourists. They come to
wander the planted hillsides, gaze at the farm animals,
old buildings and the historic barn. There have been as
many as 4,000 people on a given day.
The Rainbow Girls have a snack shack at the
"Hill" so the visitors can enjoy light
refreshments, coffee and soft drinks.
Many people have asked why we have created this spot of
beauty. Perhaps it is because we enjoy seeing the bulbs
blossom forth each springtime, so symbolic of Easter and
the Resurrection. Perhaps it is because we want to keep
the ""old home place" from falling to ruin
and neglect as so many of these old country places are
doing. In part, too, it is our way of perpetuating the
memory of our parents, grandparents and those early-day
form folk whose way of life was so hard and so different
from our present way of life.
Much of the earthly gold has been taken from the hills of
this Gold Rush area, but we hope that the new rush of
golden blooms will give visitors something to take away
with them, not a treasure of ore, but a memorable bullion
of flowering loveliness and sense of God at work in this
act or our sharing with them.
from Sue of Homespun
"A great majority of these pictures are within a
couple of hours drive from me. Enjoy.
Views of Derbyshire
A beautiful collection of photos of the
Derbyshire, England countryside.
Sunset over Kinder Scout from Derwent Edge, Derbyshire,
Mist in the Hope Valley, Derbyshire, England
Ladybower Reservoir, Derbyshire, England
Stanage Edge, Derbyshire, England
Monsal Dale Viaduct, Derbyshire, England
Winnats Pass and Speedwell Cavern, Derbyshire, England
Wingfield Manor, Derbyshire, England
Ladybower Reservoir, Derbyshire, England
Peveril Castle, Castleton, Derbyshire, England
Edensor Village, Chatsworth, Derbyshire, England
St. Michael and All Angels Church, Hathersage,
Riber Castle, Matlock, Derbyshire, England
Chatsworth, Derbyshire, England
Hardwick Hall, Derbyshire, England
Farming in the White Peak, Derbyshire, England
The Fountain Terrace - Haddon Hall, Derbyshire, England
Chatsworth House in the Snow, Derbyshire, England
Rock-climbing, Lawrence Edge, Bleaklow, Derbyshire,
Chesterfield from Tapton, Derbyshire, England
Thatched Cottages, Baslow, Derbyshire, England
Matlock Bath, Derbyshire, England
The Midland Railway Centre, Ripley, Derbyshire, England
Ladybower Reservoir and plughole overflow, Derbyshire,
Aerial View - Haddon Hall, Derbyshire, England
Chatsworth House from the East, Derbyshires
Daffodils at Hardwick Hall, Derbyshire, England
Solomon's Temple overlooking Buxton, Derbyshire, England
St Mary and All Saints Church, Chesterfield, Derbyshire,
Derwent Edge & Ladybower Reservoir Derbyshire,
Isolated farmstead, Abney Low, Derbyshire
Crushing Mill, Odin Mine, Castleton, Derbyshire
St Oswold's Church, Ashbourne, Derbyshire
Kinder Scout from Cracken Edge, Derbyshire
Hope Valley from Stanage Edge, Derbyshire
Delphiniums on the fountain terrace - Haddon Hall,
Gardener's cottage topiary - Haddon Hall, Derbyshire
Millestones below Stanage Edge - Nr Hathersage,
North Lees Hall, Derbyshire
Bradfield Moor, Derbyshires Reservoir
Peveril Castle, Castleton, Derbyshire
Sheepwash bridge, Ashford in the water, Derbyshire
Early morning in Hope Vally, Derbyshire
Plague Cottages and St Lawrence Church, Eyam, Derbyshire
Overstones farm below Stanage Edge
Derwent Edge & Ladybower Reservoir, Derbyshire
Matlock Bath, Derbyshire
Monsal Dale, Viaduct, Derbyshire
The vale of Edale nr Castleton
St John the Baptists Church, Tideswell, Derbyshire
Carl walk & Higgerton, Haversage, Derbyshire
ANTELOPE VALLEY, CALIFORNIA
The Antelope Valley California Poppy Reserve is
established to protect and perpetuate outstanding
displays of native wildflowers, particularly the
California Poppy, Eschscholzia californica, the state
flower. These spectacular floral displays are maintained
for the enjoyment, inspiration, and education of the
people for all time to come.
This 1,745 acre State Reserve, nestled in the Antelope
Buttes 15 miles west of Lancaster, California, is located
on California's most consistent poppy-bearing land.
Other wildflowers: owl's clover, lupine, goldfield, cream
cups, and coreopsis, to name a few, share the desert
grassland to produce a mosaic of color and fragrance each
spring. As unpredictable as nature - the intensity and
duration of the wildflower bloom varies yearly.
Seven miles of trails, including a paved section for
wheelchair access, wind gently through the wildflower
fields. The broad views of this landscape provide eyefuls
of brilliant wildflower colors. Whether you most enjoy
expansive fields of wildflower colors and fragrance or
the close-up study of a single flower, this is the place
Wildflower blooms occur from March through May. The peak
viewing period is Mid-April.
CHERRY BLOSSOM FESTIVAL
The National Cherry Blossom Festival is an annual
commemoration of the gift in 1912 of 3,000 cherry trees
by Mayor Yukio Ozaki of Tokyo to Washington as a memorial
of national friendship between the United States and
Japan and a celebration of the continued close
relationship between the people of the two countries.
1885 Mrs. Eliza Ruhamah Scidmore, upon returning to
Washington from her first visit to Japan, approached the
Superintendent of Public Building and Grounds with the
proposal that cherry trees be planted along the soon to
reclaimed Potomac waterfront. Her request fell on deaf
ears. Over the next 24 years Mrs. Scidmore approached
every new Superintendent with her proposal with no
1907 The Fairchilds, pleased with the success of the
trees, began to promote Japanese flowering cherry trees
as the ideal type of tree to plant along avenues in the
Washington area. Friends of the Fairchilds also became
interested and on September 26, arrangements were
completed with the Chevy Chase Land Company to order 300
Oriental cherry trees for the Chevy Chase area.
1908 Dr. David Fairchild gave cherry saplings to boys
from each District of Columbia school to plant in their
schoolyard for the observance of Arbor Day. In closing
his Arbor Day lecture, Dr. Fairchild for the first time
expressed an appeal that the "Speedway" (the
present day corridor of Independence Avenue, SW, in West
Potomac Park) be transformed into a "Field of
Cherries". In attendance was Eliza Scidmore, whom
afterwards he referred to as a great authority on Japan.
LEGEND OF THE BLUEBONNET
By Kelton Kupper
As a Texas History Teacher for the past 20+ years I have
discovered some "STRANGE AND UNUSUAL FACTS ABOUT
TEXAS." I would like to share these with the readers
of VIRTUAL TEXAN.
Each spring Texas roadsides are decorated with blankets
of bluebonnets. The bluebonnet was adopted as the state
flower by the 27th legislature in 1901 upon request of
the Society of Colonial Dames of Texas. Texas folklorist
J. Frank Dobie recorded an Indian legend regarding the
origin of this beautiful wildflower.
According to the legend, there was an extensive drought
one summer followed by an unusually cold winter. The
severe weather caused the game to either die or leave,
leaving the Indians near starvation. The Tribe's medicine
man petitioned the Great Spirit to alleviate their
suffering. Finally the message came to the medicine man,
indicating the village had committed acts that had
offended the Great Spirit.
As penance for this offensive act, the Great Spirit
required the village to offer a burnt offering of its
most valued possession. Among those who heard the message
from the medicine man was a young girl who had a tiny
doll whose dress was made from the feathers of the blue
jay. She loved her doll as a mother loves a child.
Upon hearing the message, the little girl became very
distraught, since she concluded that her doll was without
doubt the most valuable item within the entire village.
But she had to save her people. So that night as the
village slept, she placed her beloved doll into the
campfire, and the flames consumed it.
She then took the ashes and scattered them over the
nearby fields. The next morning those fields were covered
with beautiful blue cover-like flowers, the same color as
the dress of her doll, signifying the Great Spirit had
accepted the girl's offering, and the village was spared.
AS WE DRIVE AND VIEW THESE BEAUTIFUL WILDFLOWERS MAY WE
REMEMBER THIS STORY AS A TESTAMENT TO THE FAITH OF A
YOUNG GIRL AND HER DEVOTION TO HER VILLAGE.
Kelton Kupper is a retired Texas history teacher who is
still teaching and extolling the virtues of Texas.
Go back to the Gardening & Outdoors Page.