- Peonies: Don't tell the roses, but I think peonies are my favorite. They have all the luscious glory and fragrance of roses, without the thorns or the persnickety-ness. They rise up like little flames from the spring soil, burst like fireworks (covered in ants), and then gently fall back to the earth--perhaps a little mildewy--and hide again until the next spring. I could just stick my face in them forever.
- Roses: Root-grown, old-fashioned, fragrant--that's how I love them! I adore them so much that I can't bear to pick them. I like pink, peach, white, magenta--I think next year I might try striped. I don't know why people fear them so much--but then, they are probably not buying the root-grown kind.
- Hyacinths: I buy them in the supermarket in the late winter, then plant the withered bulbs in my garden in the spring, and the following year have patches of deliriously fragrant blooms. Few things in life are so easy and so satisfying.
- Hydrangeas: Well, they don't smell much, but they sure do look good! I'll take them all. One of each! They remind me of the hats women used to wear to church when I was growing up, but I'll forgive them for that!
For the rest of this list and more from Maria Rodale, go to www.mariasfarmcountrykitchen.com.
Who Says You Can't Garden Roses Organically? - Maria's Farm Country Kitchen
Organic Wedding Flowers - Organic Gardening
Hydrangea Cake - I Am Baker