The Brave Little Hollyhock


A late hollyhock shines in the late afternoon light of Oct. 26, 2012.

It was cold this morning—frosty, with a low in the upper 20s. The next week is supposed to be like this, as a powerful cold front charged through yesterday, bringing rain and then temperatures that plunged like a lemming over a cliff.

Crab apples

Crab apples in the later afternoon, Oct. 26, 2012. I like the background and partly blue sky, too.

Fall is getting on. Some trees still cling to leaves, but for the most part, the shape of the Iowa land, often cloaked in vegetation, is emerging. You can see the brown hills, covered in decaying leaves, through the grey trunks of cottonwoods, oaks, ashes and others.

So today, when I raked for a while in my backyard, I was a little startled to see a hollyhock—a summer flower—still gamely in bloom. It’s a young plant that I put in just this year, so maybe that explains its odd behavior. I hope being in bloom now doesn’t mean the roots will have any trouble getting into their winter coma. Because, let’s face it, over the next few nights, there’s going to be some damage to these delicate green cells.

Anyway, I dropped my rake and got my good camera and snapped a few late fall images of flowers and crab apples and the few hanging leaves left on the late trees. Here is a flickr slideshow of more.

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