Orange on Orange

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Well, the day lilies are in full and glorious bloom, so that means that the road crews will be along with their mowers to cut them down at their peak of blossom as usual. Maybe this year they’ll take my suggestion and put this road on their list for a couple of weeks later in July so the lilies could know their glory days and not be brought low while in their prime.

But honestly, our 4 mile gravel road, like others in the county, show signs of budget cuts for roadway maintenance. Branches hang so low over our road that when they’re wet, they drag along the top of the car when we pass by. The place is kinda looking neglected.

There’s one spot on the high side where a tree fell across the road a month ago. Somebody cut just enough of the branches out of the top so folks can get past, but just barely. In times past, VDOT would have been on that in a day or so. We haven’t seen them out this way in the month since the tree fell.

So. Today the orange day lilies that have escaped from cultivation from the more numerous homesteads that once inhabited this valley add color to every blind curve and hillside along Goose Creek. Occasionally, they come adorned with color-coordinated accessories like this Fritillary.

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Fred First holds masters degrees in Vertebrate Zoology and physical therapy, and has been a biology teacher and physical therapist by profession. He moved to southwest Virginia in 1975 and to Floyd County in 1997. He maintains a daily photo-blog, broadcasts essays on the Roanoke NPR station, and contributes regular columns for the Floyd Press and Roanoke's Star Sentinel. His two non-fiction books, Slow Road Home and his recent What We Hold in Our Hands, celebrate the riches that we possess in our families and communities, our natural bounty, social capital and Appalachian cultures old and new. He has served on the Jacksonville Center Board of Directors and is newly active in the Sustain Floyd organization. He lives in northeastern Floyd County on the headwaters of the Roanoke River.

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  1. Hi Fred – I’m sorry I haven’t commented in a while………I love the pic of the butterfly on the daylily………..My daylilies have gone by……..My butterfly garden is in full bloom but have not had any butterflies here in St. Louis as of yet………Hopefully the coming July hot weather will bring them to the gardens……….