Worms and Flowers

Lord Byron Fuchsia

Posted in Flowers by Lzyjo on May 23, 2009

I bought this Lord Byron fuchsia last winter on eBay. Since fuchsias aren’t blooming during the winter, stores stop stocking them in the fall.

I’ve been charmed with fuchsias since childhood. After all, what little girl does not love pink and purple. I used to pluck fuchsia flowers from the hanging basket where my mom worked. I plucked a lot of flowers there, mostly fuchsias and azaleas. The fuchsias were almost too perfect to look real, so that was probably part of the reason I wanted to pick them, just to make sure they weren’t plastic, or some other cheap trick.

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Whenever I see a cultivar from the Victorian Era, the golden age of gardening, I immediately want whatever it is.  Any mention of Victorian gardening always conjures up the most romantic images of gardeners carefully tending their plants and hybridizing the most beautiful flowers in their plate-glass conservatories on lovely estates with three-story mansions, complete with verandas, flagstone paths, and all the other accoutrements of the time.

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Fuchsia ‘Lord Byron’ was hybridized by French nurseryman Victor Lemoine in 1877. Lemoine, by the way, is responsible for prolific hybridization of lilacs, as well as, astilbes, cannas, delphiniums, heucheras, hydrangeas, peonies, streptocarpus, and many others. One of the other reasons why I picked Lord Byron, instead of say, Princess Dollar, aka, Dollar Princess, which was also hybridized by Lemoine, was of course Lord Byron himself, the rock star of 19th Century poetry. Of course Byron is known for his “romantic” poetry, but his own personal love life is more alluring and sensational than his poetry. Wikipedia reveals how information about Lord Byron’s bisexuality was smothered by his publisher and the numerous affairs he had with many married women everywhere he went. He even had a stalker. After dumping a married society women he had an affair with, she began visiting him dressed as a page, something which would have wrecked both of their public images. The woman was apparently so heart broken that she stopped eating and became so thin that Byron complained he was “haunted by a skeleton.”

Let’s hope this Fucshia doesn’t break my heart, but continues to please me with these small, perfectly formed, and intensely colored flowers.

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8 Responses

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  1. Faith said, on May 23, 2009 at 7:21 AM

    I think he desperately needed therapy.
    But the flower is beautiful. 🙂

    ~Faith

  2. Lzyjo said, on May 23, 2009 at 9:02 AM

    HAHAHA! Say that again! The guy had some major issues. I’m sure Freud would have had something interesting to say about it!

  3. Domingos de Souza Nogueira Neto said, on May 23, 2009 at 7:37 PM

    Lindo este blog. Adorei estar aqui. Domingos. Brasil.

  4. ourfriendben said, on May 24, 2009 at 6:18 AM

    This is a great fuchsia, lzyjo! I’ll have to look for it. For a great movie featuring the full splendor of Victorian manor life, rent “Angels and Insects.” Lots of natural history. As for Lord Byron, if you haven’t seen the original version of “Gothic” (with Gabriel Byrne as Byron), you should. It’s interminably long—all the action takes place in one night when the Shelleys visit Byron during his Italian exile—and often tedious, and, of course, sick, but Gabriel Byrne is fabulous!

  5. Lzyjo said, on May 24, 2009 at 12:34 PM

    Muchas Gracias.

  6. Lzyjo said, on May 24, 2009 at 12:39 PM

    It’s a old one, with small flowers, but it has many virtues.

    Thanks for the recommendations I’ll try to convince DH to add them to the queue. I made it through Lawrence of Arabia, (even thought it may have taken four nights!) Fritzcarraldo AND Gone with the Wind, so I think I can handle anything, but I could be wrong!

  7. Jen said, on May 24, 2009 at 4:31 PM

    Never knew that about Lord Byron – sounds like a character. I’d love to see him portrayed by Gabriely Byrne! I’m growing fuschia for the first time this year, but the purple part of my flower is nowhere near this dark – this is just gorgeous.

  8. Lzyjo said, on May 25, 2009 at 10:54 AM

    They definitely didn’t teach that type of information in school! This is my first year also. Dark Eyes, and Princess Dollar are both very dark and contrasty.


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