Today’s trip to the Farmer’s Market was brought to you by the letter G and the color GREEN! Which was actually a twist of fate for me, since, as I walked out the door, Jeff, the handy husband who was working on the yard said, “Your hanging plants are dead. Why don’t you buy some ferns?” I was hoping he hadn’t noticed. Figuring I would not likely find them at the market, I was mulling over whether I really wanted to stop at Lowe’s on a Saturday that would surely be packed with everyone else’s handy husband. I didn’t, but I would.
So I headed out to the Riverfront Farmers Market in beautiful downtown Wilmington, NC, with my favorite farmers market partner in crime, Denise. That’s Denise moseying. And yes, that is a battleship in the background. Doesn’t every farmers market have one?
Denise is a great person to shop a farmers market with because 1) she is super creative and makes tons of different crafts and 2) she knows a lot about plants. As much as I have tried, all I really seem to know about plants is how to kill them. We can’t all be gifted horticulturists so I’m not going to beat myself up about this, but rather be thankful that there are an abundance plants and flowers available to replace the ones that sorrowfully don’t survive my lifestyle. Anyway, the market was filled with plants and flowers this weekend and it didn’t take long for Denise to say, “Oh look, that’s a wild hibiscus.” Followed by, “It’s leaves look like pot.” Ok, you got my attention, let’s take a look.
Our friend from the Backyard Gardner explained that this is a Texas Star Wild Hibiscus. It’s a large plant with big, showy, crimson flowers in the upper leaf axils. It blooms in July, August, and September. It needs a lot of sun and is native to swamps and marsh areas like ours that are in coastal plains (thank you wildflower.org). And yes, I have to admit that some of the leaves look like cannabis. So if you plant it along your property line be prepared for the neighbors to ask questions, or at least give you some questioning looks. And keep an eye out for the neighbors’ teenage kids who suddenly take an interest in your garden!
So Denise buys her wild hibiscus (a steal at $7) and we proceed along the cobblestone street. Historic downtown Wilmington is really quite charming and the riverfront location with its view of the Cape Fear River and Battleship North Carolina is truly unique. Just a few more steps and look what we find: two, beautiful, massive ferns! And when I say massive, I’m not kidding. Here is one hanging from my porch. Gorgeous, right? You know what makes them even more fabulous? They were $10 each!!! That is a true Farmers Market Find. And as if that’s not enough, I didn’t have to go to brave the crowds at Lowe’s! SCORE and SCORE AGAIN!
Lesson learned…never underestimate what you will find at your local farmers market. Feeling rather satisfied with my purchase, I decided to keep with the green theme and reward myself with one more small purchase. These beauties for my table!
See you next time at the Market!
About the Riverfront Farmers’ Market:
Open Saturdays, March 30th thru December 21st, 2013 8:00am to 1:00pm.
N. Water Street in Historic Downtown Wilmington along the scenic Cape Fear River.
For more information: http://www.wilmingtondowntown.com/farmers-market
- 13 Fascinating Uses for Hibiscus (funflowerfacts.com)