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Perennials are the ones that grow like weeds, biennials are the ones that die this year instead of next, and hardy annuals are the ones that never come up at all.
-Katherine Whitehorn

quinquagenarian’s quizaway

Am scoring double points for this  ABC Wednesday as it will be the last ’Q’ post I can claim to be a Quinquagenarian. Ascribed to any person from fifty to fifty-nine years old but the quicksands of time are down to a few weeks quota of grains before the next decade.



I’d assumed the word derived from Quin=5 only to find it literally is Latin for 50 -  quinquaginta – which makes me wonder why numerically this is represented by an L and not a Q. Since quinquagintagenarian is a bit of a mouthful, even for those with all their own teeth, it is presumably foreshortened to roll off the tongue.

19th century antiques at the Geffrye museum


In terms of time immemorial, a quinquagenarian is half an antique, quivering between a collectible and a cast off. It conjures mixed images of seedy decay…

seedheads and fungi


the quiet acquisition of decrepitude…

garden post with ivy


…to Agasse’s quixotism in his quakerish quintet of ‘The Chalon Family in their London Town garden’

chalon family - agasse print


As both gardener and quinquagenarian, I’m on a quest for the quirky, quaint and oddly picturesque which is often to be found in life’s last quarter.

last quarter on the sow thistle seed clock

Am making this a quick getaway post as I leave to reacquaint myself with family for a few days but before departing, I invite you to participate in my Quizaway:-

animal, vegetable or mineral quizaway


  • click image above to enlarge and guess the ID species,  family or name
  • giveaway of  (50) seeds of Knautia macedonica ‘Watercolour Mix’
  • winner is the nearest correct answer out of the bag
  • answer below or use the contact form
  • UK only entrants alas as postage is prohibitive

knautia macedonica at Kew gardensPre, post or plain quinquagenearians are welcome to add their thoughts….and join the queue of posts at ABC Wednesday

Useful Links:
Sarah Raven’s Knautia macedonica seeds ‘Watercolour Mix’
How to grow Knautia Macedonica
Post Quinquagenarian:
Hurtled towards 60 and beyond
©Copyright 2012 Laura Thomas.
All rights reserved. Content created by Laura Thomas @PatioPatch

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