I usually teach a plant unit to my second graders and
each child pots a houseplant from cuttings which I take
from the ivy and "airplane" plants. Sometimes students
and their parents come up to me years later to tell me
that their plant is still growing. It gives me a warm
glow when this happens.
Several years ago at the end of the school year, my
students gave me a gift certificate to redeem at a
local nursery. Murray and I waited until the
appropriate season, then prepared a raised bed and set
out azaleas in front of the house. They are spectacular
in the spring and they bloom early. Some years we must
protect them from late freezes.
This is how they look several years later.
The Rose of Sharon isn't actually a rose, but a flowering
shrub. Some people call them altheas, but I prefer the Biblical
name. They are very easy to grow. This one came up in our flower
bed and we transplanted it to the school campus by the music building.
This one is white with a red center, but in our yard we also have
solid white, solid pink and pink with a red center.
Indian Hawthorn is very rewarding in the spring. This pink
one is growing on campus. They will survive most of our winters,
but will need some protection if the temperature gets down to 0.
We rarely have winters that cold here.
"Sing for joy, O heavens, for the Lord has done this,
shout aloud, O earth beneath." Isaiah 44:23
The Old Farmer's Almanac