Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Visiting Plymouth and Sheboygan Falls, Wisc.

The flowers I saw on my Wisconsin trip last week offered a surprise at every turn. Their lushness (in July!) was quite the surprise, but it was also fun to see so many beautiful wildflowers I don't see back home, like this Spotted Knapweed.

And though we have lots of White Clover, this Red Clover (which really looks pink to me) also struck me as quite lovely.

The plant I found most unique was this blue wildflower. I noticed it along some of the country roads around Elkhart Lake, and it was still on my mind when we got to the lovely little town of Plymouth, which was a shopper's delight! While I checked out the Sewing Basket quilt shop and an antique mall, Alex had explored on his own and, as requested, located a bookstore, Book Heads, that had a nice selection of local gardening books. The pleasant lady there, who happens to garden herself, was kind enough to look at the photos on my digital camera and tell me that oh yes, this is chicory! I like chicory flavor in coffee but not in tea, and I had no idea its famous root was attached to such a beautiful flower!

The wonderful book she recommended, "Wildflowers of Wisconsin" by Stan Tekiela, had information on chicory and about 200 other wildflowers, which is how I was able to identify the ones above as well as the ones I would see later in the trip. Tekiela has written lots of state guidebooks for flowers and birds, including a bird book for Georgia that's now on my wish list.

In addition to the bookstore, I was happy to visit the Sewing Basket and find some great fabrics to add to my stash. (I think they're really supposed to be "coffee" fabrics, but since they don't actually say coffee or have coffee beans in the design, I decided they could join the tea fabrics.) This was one of several places where I was politely asked, "Do I detect an accent there?" I later learned from a Wisconsinite that my husband and I talk fast for southerners, so I guess that's a good thing!

My favorite find in Plymouth, though, came from an antique mall where I found some vintage booklets about Spode, Royal Doulton and Haviland china. At first I thought these old books must have been aimed at shop owners, but as I read them, it seemed they were offered to the general public.

Later I'll try to share more of the fun stuff I'm finding in these booklets, but I was so fascinated I had to scan this inserted page from the Spode booklet because it has such great information about what was going on in china sales during the WWII years. (Double-click on the image if you want to read it.)

The afternoon concluded with a stop by picturesque Sheboygan Falls.

This Crown Vetch covers the banks there in an absolutely gorgeous display.

I spotted this Field Thistle there too, which was quite fortunate since I would be seeing both these flowers in an unlikely place the very next day, and thanks to my new wildflower book I knew enough to recognize them!


  1. oh that really sounds like a lovely trip!!!

  2. I am enjoying your travel journal.

  3. You took a lot of great wildflower photos. I like your new fabric and the vintage china booklets. That info on Spode china sales during the war was very interesting.

  4. I love your photos, they are just lovely! The Spode information
    (1943) was interesting too, puts a perspective on things, doesn't it?
    I'm enjoying your travels, thanks for sharing. Joanie

  5. Glad to see more photos of VACATION which is a VERY GOOD thing to do!

  6. I have a friend who used to work for the Kohler arts center there. If you get a chance, go into the arts center and visit the bathrooms. There is an entire series of postcards regarding the fantastical brooms. (I have them.)


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