I originally bought these flowers because the cover of the seed packet looked appealing. I knew nothing about Four O’Clocks, as they are called, at the time. Much to my delight, they have thrived in my annual bed for the past five years. They burst forth with cheerful blooms, but only in the last afternoon. They sleep in through the morning when the zinnias, cosmos and sunflowers are blazing away.
I laugh because they seem to awaken about the same time that I hit my late afternoon slump. I am a morning and late night person, but the late afternoon and I have trouble getting along. I usually taught my seminars either from 8-11 am or or 11-2pm. All went well during these time slots. Once, despite my warnings, the Dean scheduled a class of mine from 2-5pm. Art students loved this time slot, but it was deadly for me. In fact, it was the only semester during my many years of teaching that I received negative reviews about my “interest in the subject matter.” After that one time, I was never again asked to teach in the afternoon.
So the Four O’Clocks stand in stark contrast to my torpor at 4pm. Fortunately, they continue blooming into the evening. I am able to sit outside on the porch swing after dinner and enjoy their gorgeous display.