Four O’ Clocks Fragrant, colorful flowers

     Four O’ Clocks! I love that flower. 

     Very fragrant, colorful  flowers that open after four in the afternoon.four o clocks1

     I planted it when I was a child, in a small section of dirt right outside our kitchen door on the westside of Chicago.  First I would pound at that hard dirt to loosening it so I could poke a dozen holes in the dirt and place three seeds in each hole. One for the ground, one to grow and one for whomever came by that was hungry.  I was happy when one or two plants grew a summer. Their fragrant flowers opened up after four pm, hence the name.

     This year, I saw the seeds at the store and happily planted them this past spring. This past cold and rainy spring. Not a good year for any plants. But my Four O’ Clocks did take root. Three in the front of the house and four more around the dog kennel.

     I will plant them again next year. Getting ready to do so means I need to collect seeds. I save money by harvesting  seeds, which gives me the possibility of more  plants.

     The Four O’ Clock is a very elegant plant. From a single seed a plant will grow upward and then out into a small lacy bush, with two inch, trumpet shaped flowers– at least that’s how its suppose to be.

       Uriah, my dog, has stepped on the delicate plants and they popped back up. An angry raccoon rolled in the ones near the front door, a little water and they are still in tacked. Luckily the raccoon didn’t break the plants apart.

     Now with the weather cooling off, I check on them twice a day and bring in the black pea size seeds. I will roll them up in paper and hope a mouse doesn’t eat them by spring.

     All my seeds are wrapped in paper then placed in a paper bag in the garage. Mold is one of the enemies when it comes to storing seeds. Add the mice, and my stupid mistakes; tossing them out, or forgetting and putting a piece of plastic in the bag. Still, if I have three seeds left by spring I will get one plant that will bloom for weeks and yield more seeds for me to plant.

     With the cold weather moving all my Four O’ Clocks have wilted ending this season.  And my collected bag of seeds is waiting for spring.

One thought on “Four O’ Clocks Fragrant, colorful flowers”

  1. I know someone who keeps all of his seeds in the fridge. Each has their own ziploc bag labeled with that it is. That’s a mouse-proof way to store them!

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