Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Raspberry Faces

Did you know that the hollyhock has long been the 'unofficially' accepted floral symbol of Taos, New Mexico?  The Taos Garden Club chose the hollyhock for their official flower, and from reading the history of the hollyhock ,( as written by Ruth L. Fish) on their website, Los Jardineros, this vigorous flower has become recognized as "the Taos flower".
In 1949 the club scattered seeds along the main highways leading to town, along residential streets, alleys etc.  The club encouraged business owners to also plant hollyhocks, and by the second and third year the results were spectacular!  Over the years, road and town maintenance work have destroyed some of the plantings but many of the townspeople continue to use hollyhocks as their chief summer floral display in public and private gardens.
What a spectacular sight this floral display would be!  I can only imagine... but one day I will go there.

12x12 oil on canvas


Kelley Carey MacDonald said...

You're driving me WILD with these hollyhocks paintings! I can't grow them for the life of me - we had ONE year with wonderful hollyhocks, then... pppphhhhtttt. Beautiful work. I would love to go to Taos to see this, too... maybe someday Paco and I will take a road trip....
Thanks for sharing that wonderful story, too!

Melanie Rawlings said...

what an interesting fact. I had no idea thank you for enlightening me.
Its realy sad that they were destroyed along the roads that way

Julie Hill said...

Kim, what a wonderful series you have going here with these gorgeous hollyhocks. Wouldn't they just look delightful all assembled together on one wall. Thanks so much for sharing...love learning new things too!

Gwen Bell said...

Kim, your this vivid Hollyhock series of yours is spectacular! I love the areas where the light hits strongly. And your stories and histories are always so interesting.

Hollyhocks hold a very nostalgic place in my heart and remind me so of my beloved Grandmother. Every year I try to grow them but never have success.