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Monday, April 18, 2011

Q is for Queen Anne's Lace

When I was a child, I recall picking wildflowers in an empty lot behind my cousin's house out on Long Island in New York. At the time I was living in Manhattan, the concrete jungle. YUCK! Even then I hated the city, so a field of wildflowers was close to heaven for me. I didn't know the names of the flowers back then, but I can imagine they are the usual; Black-eyed Susans, Daisies, Buttercups, Blue-eyed Grass, Pussy-toes, maybe even a Dandelion,  Cosmo, Coneflower, and of course, Queen Anne's Lace.

Queen Anne's Lace is the most lovely member of the carrot family. If you've ever pulled one out of the garden you'll know it by the strong scent of carrots the roots have. No, you shouldn't eat them, but some larva love the leaves and they eventually turn into pretty butterflies. Queen Anne's Lace is universally known as filler for informal bouquets. The most generous among us may call them wildflowers, but in reality Queen Anne's Lace is your most prolific of weeds, after dandelions. If left unchecked, they can take over a yard, garden or flower bed.

Whatever you may call it, it is a lovely long lasting flower in the flower vase and I shall always love it. Queen Anne's Lace takes me back in time, back to a simple time when a grassy field was a fun, carefree place with zero danger. It also gives me back the lovely memory of when I gave my mother that kid-size bouquet --which I considered the most beautiful thing on earth-- I picked out in the field in the sun out in the open without my mother worried I'd get hit by a car or bus. I believe I may have learned to love flowers--or wildflowers to be exact--in that field in the country.

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