I went to Agway for squirrel food and they had several giant pots of mums that were overflowing and pouring down the sides. They looked gorgeous, not like the little squidgy pots of sticky-up mums you usually see. The signs stuck in them read “V. Challenged Mums, Half Price, $10.” Very challenged?
I had to ask.
They laughed and said everyone was asking, and that it meant “vertically challenged.” I felt mentally challenged that I couldn’t have figured that out on my own!
I had to get one. I put it on the porch steps and it cascades beautifully. I sit next to it and read in the sun when I’m taking a break from work or housework. It smells lovely. I never knew mums had scent. I told a friend of mine I want to stuff my face in the plant and inhale deeply, but that I won’t because I know I’ll get bees up my nose. The bees are very dozy at this time of year and it’s always sunny on the porch steps, so they’ve settled in on the mums. They take naps there, still and quiet in the sunlight. Once in a while one or more of them buzzes for a moment without moving. A bee snore?
I once found a tiny emerald-green bee waking up one summer morning in my morning glories. He had spent the night inside the closed flower bud, and when the sun warmed it up, he pushed his way out and I got to watch. He didn’t have much trouble getting out, so apparently he’d done this before . When he was a little more than halfway out he stretched a bit and straightened out his antennae and washed his face. Then he climbed out the rest of the way and groomed his wings. After that he just sat there enjoying the early morning sunlight.
It was magical to watch. I’ve seen it a few more times since and it’s fascinating every time.