Monday, June 10, 2013

In Corydon: A rose by any other name ...

St. Andrew's goes on the road one Sunday each June and heads south to Corydon for an informal service and potluck with Bill, who --- hardcore Episcopalian that he is --- drives north to the church in Chariton practically every other Sunday during the year. This road trip is an advantage of a small --- maneuverable --- congregation. That's Bill, at right, among his roses.

Bill also is a master gardener. He and his late wife operated the floral shop on the Corydon square for many years (now the location of Ludlow's restaurant, named in honor of a family pet that frequented the shop when flowers instead of steak were on the menu). He also is chief gardener at the Prairie Trails Museum. You can admire his handiwork there any time you stop or drive by on Highway 2.

The bonus Sunday was meeting Brenda (left), Bill's next-door neighbor and the force behind the blog, Simple Pleasures. We had a lot of fun comparing blogger notes. Brenda is a masterful photographer and I envy her compositional skills. There are some great recipes, decorating ideas, reading suggestions and all sorts of other stuff on Simple Pleasures, too.

Bill's roses are "Buck Roses," developed at Iowa State University by Dr. Griffith Buck (1915-1991), who created more than 80 named cultivars capable of withstanding -20-degree temperatures that need no pesticides or herbicides to thrive. I'm guessing this variety is Prairie Sunrise, but could be mistaken.

This variety --- no idea what it is --- was putting on such a lavish show when I walked up the driveway with three-bean salad in hand that I mistook it for a peony.

And here's Bill's deck. I generally come home after a visit, look around the messy and weed-infested flower beds here and feel inadequate.

There also was an epiphany Sunday, experienced while examining the decor in the guest bathroom, where Bill has a framed poster dating from the 1920s or 1930s advertising a performance by Summy's Southern Syncopators, a dance band that performed across the Midwest during those years.

One of the band members looked familiar. It was Chariton's Lee Veirs, whom I've written about here.

As in turned out, Bill's father-in-law, who grew up in what now is the Inn of the Six-Toed Cat in Allerton, was a member of that band, too.  How's that for a coincidence?

You never know what's going to turn up on a road trip.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the great history on Summy's Southern Sycopators. My father in law was in the band too. The poster you describe was found by my wife after her mother died - so there is no one left to answer important questions except a few storie about "road life" Happy you used the plumbing while here, Frank, or this connection would not have been made. Also, your pictures are great, but you left out the weed patches.
b gode