Orange you glad I didn’t say banana again?
Yes, I am just silly enough that I found this funny.
Isn’t the lantana pretty, though? One of the few plants in my kitchen garden that was just planted for Beauty. As a side bonus, it ended up attracting pollinators to the vegetables — and butterflies and hummingbirds for F. and I to “ooh” and “aah” over all summer long.
She’s planted in a large container near the front door, where I can see the visitors to her blooms from the desk where I work. She might be partially responsible for my lower-than-normal output of pages this summer, as I’d much rather stare at a hummingbird’s shimmery golden-green back than a screen filled with words. But… I don’t seem to find the energy to worry about that below-average output. The live show every day was much more valuable to me than the stuff going in my bank account.
The hummingbirds adored this one particular cultivar of lantana above all others. She’s called ‘Miss Huff,’ for those of you planning your own hummingbird feast. And she’s perennial in Zone 7, which means I’ll be seeing her blooms next season, as well. (‘Miss Huff’ is not very cold hardy. But if you garden anywhere in Zones 7 through 10, you’re in luck!)
The father of a friend of mine planted ‘Miss Huff” by the dozens to control erosion on the slope behind his house, and whoa, did that turn out to be an excellent decision. I was in awe of that hill in full bloom. It was a place of color and light, constantly in motion from all the insect, butterfly, and hummingbird activity.
Lantana ‘Miss Huff’ goes through a series of changes. She begins with little rectangular budlets in a dark orangey-pink, which weirdly open out into yellow florets, which fade to peach and then darken as the blossom ages. By the time the innermost ring of buds is ready to open yellow, the outer ones are definitely orange, giving the whole bloom a bicolor effect.
This shot captured the time just before the inner buds open out. So it’s quite Orange, and today’s response to Capturing Beauty’s R-O-Y-G-B-I-V challenge.
Hope you enjoyed it! I certainly love orange; as I mentioned last week, I felt at one time that this color defined me.
And as Frank Sinatra once said:
“Orange is the happiest color.”