As you may know, I am not a native to this beautiful area of the country in which I live. I'm an Oklahoma born girl who has had the privilege to live in and visit much of the United States. I am blessed to have resided in Southeast Alabama for the past nine and a half years.
There are so many things about this region of the country that I love and enjoy. One of the first things I noticed and loved were the beautiful flowers especially in the spring of the year. The Bradford Pear trees and colorful Azaleas light up the spring. Entire festivals are dedicated to the beauty of the Azalea.
The summer has its beauties too. Bright yellow Lantana, glorious and hardy Knock-out Roses, as well as the prodigious blooms of the Hydrangea flaunt their beauty all summer long.
But one of my favorite of them all is the Camellia. The Camellia is the state flower of Alabama and can be found in many colors: bright reds, pretty pinks and pure whites. The best thing about the Camellia is that it blooms in the winter! While the winter season way down here in the deep Southeast is extremely mild compared to most of the rest of the country, it is still a time when leaves fall off trees and flowers fade. To look across a bland landscape and spot the color of the camellia brings a smile!
This past fall, I finally purchased a Camellia bush for my yard. I found it at a reduced price at a local botanical garden. When I bought it, I did not know what color the blooms would be. When buds appeared, they looked like they would produce white flowers. I waited rather impatiently for the buds to produce flowers and finally in mid-January, I spotted the first bloom. I was ecstatic to see that the flowers were a sweet, delicate two-tone pink!
What a beauty! I look forward to enjoying this one for a long time, and I can't wait to add more and different colored blooms to my winter flower garden.