Confederate Roses are bloomin’

Summer will officially be here come June 21st but I beg to differ; it’s here now in my book. It’s hotter than a firecracker and even hotter in front of the stove making blackberry jam (seedless) this morning. Five cups of berry juice, seven cups of sugar and a package of pectin produces five and a half pints of the sweet jam. Good on those whop biscuits too, tis. Fat free of course!

One of the four Confederate Roses is in bloom and looking good. The large flowers are white in the mornings turning very reddish-pink in the evenings. The flower is as large as a Hibiscus. The Confederate Rose looks more like a small tree or shrub than a true rose with thorns. Not sure how it got the name. It is also one of the few things grown here that you cannot eat.

The briar patch was turned over to the Mockingbirds today after our last picking of blackberries for the season. They eat their fair share of the blackberries and turn the leaves white.

The granddaughters will be here this time next month and their father asked me to prepare a batch of chowchow while they are here. Then he wants me to take some photos of their expressions when they smell it cooking. Reckon he is referring to the strong vinegar and hot pepper aroma filling the house as it is boiling. Recall he didn’t stick around long after he got his first whiff.

Remember well how it was as a chap back in Georgia, out on Liberty Hill Road this time of year or there about. No air conditioner mind you and the pressure cooker on the stove was huge and secured by a metal band clasp. They treated it like a bomb and shooed me out of the kitchen dare I go in the house that way.

Old aunts were canning string beans at the time and the canning of tomatoes stunk too. Not to mention they were busier than a bee and ornery as a hornet. Between the heat, hornets and odor, I got out of the house.

From the back porch one could see a fire tower way out to the right, but only the top part of it because of the trees. Over time the trees blocked the view of the fire tower completely because it was way out across the river near Wares Cross Roads.

Never got to go up in that fire tower, but did have the opportunity to go in one when I was in Scouting with the boys. Would not want to do all that climbing this day and time, but it was most interesting back when. They take forest fires seriously and you should too.

The house on the hill on Liberty Hill Road was 14 miles from town. The road was dirt, red dirt and the Kudzu & trees on side of the road would be red from the dust created by passing cars, maybe three or four vehicles a day would pass. One would wait by the window to see who it was.

Me and two more boys rode out there once on bicycles when I was about 12 – 13. Never do that again. Too hard to pedal up one of those hills and we had to push, mercy!

Like a lot of things, that hill has good and bad memories because my father died at the bottom of it when he was younger than me.

Would he be surprised this day and time or what?