The peonies and roses are out full bloom in our garden. Last year a hail storm came through just before the peonies flowered and we had few buds that developed. How different it is this year! There are blossoms all over our garden These are an older variety of peony and the heavy blossoms are causing the stalks to bend over with their weight. James is talking of staking them but I have the feeling the all-to-brief season will be over before we get around to it. As always when I see ants on my peonies I think of my childhood and my mother’s peonies. She told me that the peonies needed the ants in order to bloom. I have since learned that, while they are not required, the ants do seem to help the double blossoms of the peony open all the way. It’s a delightful synergy of nature.
This is also the season of graduation and our bed and breakfast in Asheville was happy to cater an afternoon reception for a number of the graduates from the University of North Carolina-Asheville. They enjoyed relaxing on our porch while sharing memories and gifts with parents and friends and we enjoyed helping to make the occasion special for them. I would like to cater more events of this type, our porch and gardens are so perfect for them.
While some were busy with ceremony, others of our guests took the Blue Ridge Parkway up to Craggy Gardens. They were intrigued by a quantity of gnarled and bent trees on the mountainside and wondered if the area took its name from them. Actually, no. The Great Craggy Mountains are named for the mountain summit “balds”(patches of rock which are barren) and the grass and shrubs which grow around them, looking like a garden to the viewer. The mountains are covered with rhododendron plants which add to this appearance. While the gardens down in the valley of Asheville are well advanced, these shrubs in the mountains have another two weeks or more to go before they will bloom for you. If James and I are lucky, we hope to catch a spare afternoon to dash up there and see them!
Meanwhile, the Carolina is proud to have been mentioned as one of the hidden gems of Asheville by author Elsa Simcik in the May edition of Atlanta’s Simply Buckhead Magazine. Atlanta is a short three and one-half hour drive from Asheville and perfect for a weekend getaway.
These are just a few of the many things happening here. We wish you were here to enjoy them with us!