Something old something new something borrowed something blue and a sixpence in her shoe
This expression is as old as the hills, but the article in St. James Magazine in 1873 was the first known printed version. This advice was to brides and what they should add to their attire on their wedding day.
Although the meaning of these items differs according to how far back they can be traced, these are the ones given in 1873: Something old – honor family and tradition; something new – couple’s future; something borrowed – happiness; something blue -purity and love; and sixpence – wish for prosperity and wealth.What does a wedding ditty have to do with gardening? Just my way of trying to do something different.
There are lots of plants I could have chosen for “something old” but this Golden Lead Ball Tree (Leguminosae Leucaena retusa) is blooming now and has been in our yard for about 10 years. The scruffy, twisted appearance of this small tree seems appropriate for its native environment – the wild, windy barren land of West Texas.
Right now its covered with dozens of seed pods. They burst and drop the seeds. However, there have been no new trees as a result. Seeds must need scarification to germinate.
The beauty of this small multiple trunk tree shows up in the round, fuzzy bright yellow balls that appear from spring to fall depending on rain and temperature.
Something new is this gorgeous Toad Lily (Tricyrtis). It’s a native to several countries in Asia; it prefers slightly shady and acidic conditions. Therefore, I keep mine in a pot with loose, rich soil.
I bought it two to three years ago. It finally bloomed. Hooray.
This picture from the internet shows the flower structure a little better than my picture.
Something borrowed: Autumn Joy Sedum (Sedum x ‘Herbstfreude) . Years and years ago, I took a cutting from one of my mother’s plants. So I guess I “borrowed” it.
This sedum blooms in the fall with these wonderful puffy clusters of pink star-shaped flowers. This succulent is winter hardy, even in a container. Mine are in bright, indirect light.
Yes. I know I’m stretching my analogy, but here is my something blue. Or maybe bluish. Masses of this Aster can be seen in many autumn landscapes because it needs to be divided every 3 – 5 years. Therefore, it’s a great pass-a-long plant.
Blue flowers are hard to find, but here’s a true blue from this internet picture of a Texas Bluebonnet. Super Wow!
And a sixpence in her shoe… Sixpence was used in England from 1551 – 1967. So maybe a penny in her shoe. An article addressing this old rhyme and converting it for modern day brides is interesting.
Just tried to combine two passions of mine – history and plants. Sorry for all the internet pictures. That’s different from my usual blogs.
Thanks for bearing with me. Hope you’re getting to enjoy some of the things you enjoy.
“History is not a burden on the memory, but an illumination of the soul.” Lord Acton