Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Miss Jessie Cox

May is upon us and everything has never looked greener! Many of us who have children are secretly hoping that our mother’s day gift might include some beautiful plants for our yards. I enjoy receiving perennials. Then as the plant comes back each year I am reminded of the person that gave me the plant. I also enjoy receiving plants that friends dig up for me from their yards. I always name the plant after the person. I suppose this custom started with me when I was in the fifth grade. My teacher at the time, Miss Jessie Cox gave me a little Dixie cup with a very small chrysanthemum that I was to give my mother for mother’s day. I placed the little cup under my bed so that it would be a surprise for my mother. Now my mom was not an avid gardener and seemed to have very little interest in plants of any sort. So here I go. I plant the little flower beside the front porch. Soon it was infested with little varmints; aphids I later determined. All that I knew at the time was that some sort of bug was on my beloved little plant that Miss Cox entrusted to my care. I devised my own pesticide. I had a bottle of strong perfume that I considered unsuitable but could not bring myself to throw away. My little plant was doused with the “smelly” perfume. Guess what – the bugs didn’t like the scent either. The little plant somehow survived my dad’s lawn mower and multiplied each year. The plant, now known as Miss Jessie Cox has accompanied me on all of my moves since college. Miss Jessie Cox has now been faithfully planted from coast to coast. Since this little plant, I have added more personalities to my flower garden. There was the Ginger Iris bed, the Cathy hostas, and now I even have the Barbara Forsythia. When I moved to my house in Murphy, the one endearing thing that probably sold me on the house was the yard and all the plants. Bill and Charlene Brackett gave me a tour of the yard pointing out different plants and their origins. There were many rose bushes and rhododendrons that were mother’s day gifts from Charlene’s children. Charlene loves purple so most of these plants are shades of purple and lavender. There were also bushes from Charlene’s mother’s yard. The yard is a cacophony of colors and varieties. I knew a lady from my previous home that had an interesting comment about different colors in one’s yard. She said, “What God sends, blends.” I like this philosophy. I never did like things too “matchy, matchy!”


Lois Bittner said...

I Googled Jessie Cox and came across your beautiful writing.

We are searching for a Jessie Cox who graduated from Taylor High School in Taylor, Texas in 1961. We have had no contact with her for a long time. Her father was a preacher, maybe, Pentecostal. I can visualize her now. She had long very curly dark hair. If you know of her, my email is