Thursday, February 10, 2011

CRAPE MYRTLE

I'm linking this post to Beverly's PINK SATURDAY. I love going over and looking at everyone's lovely things and sites and cooking and antiques and handwork and treasures every Saturday. And every one is PINK in some form or fashion. Please go look in on some of the wonderful displays and arrangements---all unique, and all uniquely beautiful.



Crepe is for the gauzy fabric with all the little convolutions which catch the light, and for the funeral hangings, and the stuff of dreams festooning gym ceilings at many a small-town high school dance; it's also for those encroaching wee satiny areas on the otherwise flawless complexions of us ladies of a certain age.

Crape Myrtle, however, is a fluty plant, in a spectrum of colors to make peacocks bow. It’s a softly blowing, wispy, ethereal floof of blossoms on pale green limbs, in the hues of watermelons and plums and roses in the shade, of lemony drinks in Summertime, of the cut surface of a yeller tomato, fresh from Mammaw’s corner plants, of the swaying purple iris behind the Snow-on-the-Mountain and the same shades of verbena chiming in their little notes of pleasure in the Summer sun.

My favorite is Watermelon, but it just won’t grow here in this frosty section of the Heartland.


And I spell it c-r-a-p-e, always, despite dictionaries and detractors. It’s the way my Mammaw spelled it in her daily letters to me, though we lived not ten miles apart---the way she thought of it, the way she put it down in her unmistakable swirled hand: “My Crape Myrtles are just SO pretty right now.” “The Crape Myrtles I planted out at the churchyard are in full bloom, with lots of the petals falling like pink snow on the graves.”

She LOVED a Crape Myrtle, and since it’s my very favorite plant of all time, Southern or other, I spell it just the way she did---she of the long-distance love affair with the staff at Burpee and Park and Nichols, her letters to them as avidly read and as kindly replied to as were the ones she sent off to me on the afternoon truck.


It will forever be CRAPE Myrtle. It just is.



And I need some----RIGHT NOW.


43 comments:

Chesapeake said...

Patience, Grasshopper.

racheld said...

Says Master Po, basking in Southern Texas, whilst my temp says TWO!!!

I'm a-waiting. And also hope you'll take some of these Rose of Sharon home when you visit.

Kat said...

I love them too and, like you, love the watermelon color the best although the lavender in my hometown is beautiful too.

I'm so looking forward to Spring this year.

Hugs,
Kat

Bev said...

Beautiful!

Chesapeake said...

I don't think there is a crape myrtle color I DON'T like, and they bloom and bloom and bloom.

I basked in temps all the way up to 50 yesterday.

mississippi artist said...

I need some too! Will winter never end? As they are one of the last trees to put out their new leaves, I always eagerly await their new little green leaves putting out- then I know it is truly spring.

Beverly said...

Watermelon is my very favorite, too. I have three lining my driveway, and they soothe my heart when they are hanging heavy with blooms.

Rachel, this will be perfect for Pink Saturday. Come over and link up any time beginning at five this afternoon.♥

Southern Lady said...

Amen, Rachel! I ALWAYS spell it with an "a," too, and cringe every time I see it spelled with an "e" -- even in SOUTHERN Living magazine!

I was pleased to see that my online Webster's spells it with an "a," though. There must have been a southerner in Mr. Webster's past, somewhere along the line.

Tonja said...

Love me some crape myrtle! When we had the lndscaping done for the Creekhouse, I had around 20 planted in the yards....watermelon in one area, and white in another. They are wonderful! I'll send you a pic when they are in full bloom!

Gabriela Delworth said...

Happy Pink Saturday!

What a lovely plant, great shade of pink!



~ Gabriela ~

steelersandstartrek said...

We have several in our yard. And every year we see others' crapes bud and bloom and fade away, while ours just sit there, being all green and peacefully content to be so. Finally, weeks after all neighbors' crapes have gone back to their post-beauty show business, ours just erupt. We have no idea why there is such a difference, since it is the same soil, same light, etc. But ours have found a way to extend our crape season for us, since we enjoy everyone else's and then get to ooh and aaah over our own yard.

NanE said...

You are right! It is correct to spell it Crape. I'm a landscape designer and always spell it just like you and 99% of the nurseries I deal with spell it the same way. Yes, I love my Crape Myrtles, they are a wonderful plant. Have a wonderful weekend, Nan

Donnie said...

What a lovely tree. They remind me of my grandmother because she loved them.

racheld said...

I just LOVE that Y'all love Crape Myrtles!!! I just wish were in the ZONE to let us have one (or dozens). Wouldn't that be pretty---a whole hedge of them.

The highway departments of TN and AL have been busy, for the medians are solid flourishes of pink and watermelon, as you top the rises and hills and look down and ahead. What a welcome!

And WELCOME to all of YOU!

rachel

Tammy@Beatrice Banks said...

I love me some crape myrtles! Love how your grandmother would write you letters! So sweet. Reminds me of my grandmother.
Have a Sweet Pink Saturday!
Tammy

Marydon said...

I love CM but don't have any, but remember G'ma having a pretty one.

Happy Valentine's PS weekend ~
TTFN ~
Marydon

viridian said...

I live too north for these!
Thank you for sharing some pink. Happy Pink Saturday!

Francie...The Scented Cottage Studio said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Francie...The Scented Cottage Studio said...

Let me try again :)) I really enjoyed your post, and it is Crape Myrtle of course ! We have one to the left of our drive way, can't wait for it to bloom.
Happy Pink Saturday !
(())

Sherry said...

Those trees are beautiful! We saw them in bloom last year in FL in July and then we came home and the were in bloom in the midwest way until late summer almost fall. I don't think I have ever seen them stay pretty that long! Thanks for stopping by.
Sherry

dana said...

Your photos and words so wonderfully shared the beauty of the Crape Myrtle! However, I don't think I've ever seen one in real life. I live in MO and don't know if they grow here or not! I will be checking with our nursery this Spring to see if they carry them......and if they will survive our winters. Right now....we're still buried in snow piles! HOWEVER, the 50s are on their way...at least for a couple of days. I'll take that!

Love your blog!! Happy Pink Saturday!

Dana

BailiwickStudio said...

I can't wait for my crepe myrtles to bloom!

Amanda said...

I so enjoyed your post! I live in the pacific northwest and am not familiar with crape myrtle...I am anxious to ask my mom who is a master gardner if they are native here? I am guessing not. I too am looking forward to spring and pretty fragrant blooms! I have buds on my lilacs...very exciting!
Best Wishes and Blessings,
Amanda

Jacalyn @ rmebathproducts.com said...

Pretty, pretty, pretty! We won't see anything that lovely for at least two months, ugh!

HPS,
Jacalyn

Laura Ingalls Gunn said...

I love LOVE! Particularly when it is pink.

Happy hearts day to you and yours.

xinex said...

The crape myrtles are gorgeous, such pretty colors. I can't wait to get mine to start blooming again...Christine

Honey at 2805 said...

I love crepe myrtles and have some this very same color in my yard!

Country Wings in Phoenix said...

Happy Pink Saturday Sweetie...
What a gorgeous share today. I love crepe myrtles.

The colors, the textures of the blooms. I know
that their love is just around the corner for us all. A beautiful share today.

I am Country Wings in Phoenix, your newest follower. I can't wait to see what you share next. A beautiful blog home. Please stop by and say hello. I would love to share my pink post with you as well. I would be honored if you signed up to follow me as well. I love meeting new friends and sharing our day to day lives along the way.

Have a glorious weekend. Happy Valentine's Day. Many hugs and much love, Sherry

sueskitchen said...

Can't wait for Spring....thanks for the little window of what will be!

Angela said...

What a very pretty sentiment. I support your right to spell it however you wish!

LV said...

Thank you for putting an early spring in my life. I love these trees. I have two and they are a little deeper color than yours.

Lynn@ The Vintage Nest said...

floof......i like that word! and watermelon is my favorite color too and they are planted all around the pool. What a delightful blog you have. I read on and on and on. HPS and a sweet Valentine. Lynn @thevintagenest

Holly said...

I love "crape" myrtles too. =0) We used to live in the South and it was always one of my favorites. I so miss the springtime that we enjoyed in the south...for now I will enjoy it by viewing other's blogs.
Happy Pink Saturday!

Cindy Lew's Studio said...

Well I know nothing about crape myrtles, but they are beautiful, so I am along for the ride in pink:-)

I am slow on the pink train today because we had stuff to get done this morning, but will continue to visit and thank all the Pink Saturday visitors.

Happy Belated Pink Saturday, eventhoug its still Saturday, its late now.

Warm Regards, CindyLew

Look in the Nook said...

Beautiful Pinks.
Happy valentine's day!
ENJOY,
Jany
Don't forget to "Look in the Nook"

Kouign Aman said...

I feel that way about jacarandas.
Happy days, mz rachel !

Kim Shook said...

Beverly's blog is now on my 'favorites' list. Because I am all about the pink!

And, of course it is CRAPE myrtle. Any other spelling is ridiculous. I adore them and my preferred color is lavendar. Because my big, droopy lavendar one reminds me of lilac bushes, which I CANNOT manage to grow.

Beverly said...

Happy Valentine's Day to you and all of your sweethearts, Rachel.♥

Keetha said...

From downtown Winona, clear up to the hill crape myrtles line both sides of the street. They are so pretty and cheerful. Although, ours aren't blooming yet, either. Hang on - spring's coming!

Lynn said...

Rachel, Thank you for stopping by to visit my blog and for the very lovely comment. I love the butterfly header! I also love your photography. I skipped around some of your blogs, stunning photography. I am always asking this, what camera do you use? Thank you again for visiting and blessings on your week. BTW I too love crepe myrtle. We have here in abundance.

Lynn said...

Racheld, Sorry I misspelled your name in the above comment. Just wanted to add that I am your newest follower. Blessings again.

racheld said...

Thank you, EVERYONE for the nice responses---this has been the most-commented post since I started the blog. I love looking in and seeing a new number, some more names, and the comments have been SO interesting and fun.

I've tried to go to each blog of YOURS to say thank you for dropping in, and I appreciate each and every one.

Lynn---I could not find a site to reply to, but I'm delighted that you joined us here. And you spelled my name perfectly---on another site I joined years ago, they already had a rachel, so I just stuck the last initial onto mine. I've had readers who asked if it's pronounced "Ratchelled" which I never thought of.

The photography is mostly by Chris, except for little moments when I've grabbed a camera while the food was hot, or the flowers JUST catching that sunbeam. And the story of the butterfly picture is in the very first post I ever made, back in 2008.

Thank you all, for these years of interaction, of dropping in, of sticking by, of lasting through. I THOUGHT I was writing down things just to keep for myself, to HAVE in a sorta concrete form, but knowing you're OUT THERE---that's too much sugar for a dime.

moire non,

Chesapeake said...

Grasshopper, you still need some patience, but not as much now.