In the interests of fair disclosure, the rose featured in new headers for the Lucas Countyan as well as related Facebook and Flickr sites is not, in fact, a Lucas Countyan.
The photo was taken during early June at Bill's home in Corydon, which makes it a Wayne Countyan. I grew up on the Lucas/Wayne County line, however, and have always felt entitled to claim both.
It is a "Buck Rose," perhaps Prairie Sunrise, among the cultivars developed at Iowa State University by Dr. Griffith Buck (1915-1991).
So all the credit goes to Dr. Buck, who developed it, to Bill Gode, who grew it --- and to what seem to have been almost perfect growing conditions this spring and summer for Iowa roses.
It's a sad morning, as more reports come in from Arizona about 19 members (out of 20) of the elite Granite Mountain Hotshots killed Sunday while battling a wildfire near the small town of Yarnell.
I'm afraid most of us take for granted much of the time the firefighters who consistently do their best to keep us safe. In larger places, these men and women tend to be paid professionals. In places like Lucas County, volunteers give countless hours and devote intense effort to developing comparable professional skills --- freely given in service to their neighbors.
You'll have a chance to show your appreciation on Thursday, when representatives Lucas County's five fire departments --- Chariton, Derby, Lucas, Russell and Williamson --- participate in the big Fourth of July parade (beginning at 1 p.m.). So yell extra loud this year.
If there's time on Sunday, I generally take a tour of my favorite Iowa blogs and by doing that yesterday I learned that our neighbor Sibylla Brown, over at Timberhill Oak Savanna in Ringgold County, has a new book out, Timberhill: Chronicle of a Restoration.
The topic, as the title suggests, is the 10-year restoration effort undertaken by Sibylla and her husband, Bill, at their 200 acres of woodland, prairie and wetland. The book, published during April, is available on Amazon.
Speaking of books, I also check in regularly at the Burr Oak Blog, which celebrates the University of Iowa Press division --- Burr Oak Books --- that focuses on regional literature, culture, history and geography.
Look there now and you'll find 4th of July dinner recipes from Emilie Hoppe's Seasons of Plenty, a three-part interview with Practical Farmers of Iowa's Luke Gran --- and much more.
This regularly updated blog offers great reading on its own --- and all sorts of ideas if you're looking for a longer Iowa-related read.