Friday, July 13, 2012

Smoke Rise Flowers: Readers Remember

Flowers By the Steps My recent article titled June Kinnelon Flowers: Multiflora Rose generated two responses from former Smoke Rise and Kinnelon residents. I share them with you here.

From Kim Vawter

Not sure if this "rose hedge" was planted or if it grew across what was 716 Orchard Road. I remember a long hedge of multifloral roses on a hedge that ran across the front of our property a few feet from the road. Of course none of the roads of the Smoke Rise area of Kinnelon had sidewalks so this plant (ing) would have been where a side walk would have been. It was always the backdrop for Easter pictures. I recall that it was almost as tall as a spirea bush and just about as dense. 

We also had wild honey suckle around the area and you could suck the end of the blossom to get a tiny bit of sweetness! I recall wild blueberry bushes to the left of the property. (I could never remember North, South East or West in Smoke Rise. I had to learn that here in the midwest where everything is flanked by the "River" Missouri River to the EAST.)

Not all smells were wonderful. Back in the woods where you could dig up great batches of good rich black dirt you also may have encountered bad smelling "skunk cabbage." If you were very careful and you took a walk deep into the forest you might find the tiny pale "lady's slipper" or the fragile "jack in a pulpit."

From Lynn

Hi Christine,

Have memories of the beautiful Pink Mountain Laurel everywhere in Smoke Rise but especially on our Brush Hill Road property. The had a lovely scent best left in the wild. Apparently it is somewhat poisonous and affected a Ruffed Grouse my brother Peter had found on the way home from school. Ever the Good Samaritan, Mother nursed it by eye dropper and put it in a basket covered with a towel in the living room unbeknownst to me. When I arrived late at night, of course I had to investigate, at which point Mr Grouse took flight around the house until we gave him his freedom.

My earliest memories were prior to living in SR at a charming house on Long Island where Mother had a North flower bed tucked next to the house filled with tiny fragrant Lily of the Valley. Forever a delicate and favorite scent.

Best regards,

Thank you, Lynn and Kim!

By the way, after desperately searching for it, I finally came across some honeysuckle last weekend. Emma and I enjoyed tasting the sweet nectar.

Happy Summer!

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