For those of you who have been nice enough to follow my adventures on our Midwest road trip, this will be my last post.

Our last two places that we visited were Hannibal, Missouri where Mark Twain (Samuel Clemens) grew up and lastly, Carthage, Missouri, which is located on Route 66 and was the home of my great-great grandparents.

Our first night in Hannibal was cold and rainy.  Thankfully, we woke up to a beautiful, sunny day.

Viewing the Mississippi River from our hotel room.
The Mississippi River was beautiful to see.
Can you see the riverboat?
The levee that protected the town from flooding were quite tall.
The town was very charming.
They had a master garden, which consisted of a vegetable garden.
They also had a butterfly garden.
Isn’t this a cute border made up of small terra-cotta pots?
I enjoyed walking through this garden and it was obvious that a lot of time and care had been spent on it.
Statue of Tom Sawyer and Huck Finn
Getting ready to whitewash the fence, just like Tom Sawyer.
Our unexpected stop was in Kansas.  We were only about 10 miles from the border, so we decided to venture into Kansas and see what there was to see.  It turns out there is a famous Union Civil War fort in Ft. Scott.  It is a national park and we enjoyed exploring.

Behind the fort, there was a small garden.  Most of what was growing was a variety of herbs.  But, it was the blooming irises that caught my eye…

Aren’t they beautiful?
You know what?  I really like iris and I think I will grow some in my own garden next spring.

Okay, you may be wondering what I am doing in a cemetery.  Well, this is where my great-great grandparents are buried.  They settled in a town on Route 66 called Carthage.  We were able to find their grave and it was a really wonderful way to end our Midwest road trip.

At the cemetery, I noticed a gravestone that had a Peony bush planted next to it.  Believe it or not, I have never seen a real Peony bush before.  They do not grow in the desert.  The flowers were so beautiful and fragrant.

Well, by the time you read this, I will soon be on my way to the Springfield, Missouri airport.  I had a fabulous time traveling with my mother and discovering  all sorts of neat things about the Midwest.  One thing that I discovered, is how much that I don’t know – but I do love learning about new things.

Thank you for ‘traveling’ along with me.  I cannot wait to see my husband and kids when I arrive home tomorrow 🙂

Noelle Johnson, aka, 'AZ Plant Lady' is a horticulturist, certified arborist, and landscape consultant who helps people learn how to create, grow, and maintain beautiful desert gardens that thrive in a hot, dry climate. She does this through her consulting services, her online class Desert Gardening 101, and her monthly membership club, Through the Garden Gate. As she likes to tell desert-dwellers, "Gardening in the desert isn't hard, but it is different."

11 replies
  1. Desert Dweller
    Desert Dweller says:

    I enjoyed your trip pics, since I've been to Hannibal but not most of the others you showed. Nothing is as nice as travelling to new places with friendly people, except getting back home! (and tending one's garden or landscape!)

  2. Nancy in Sun Lakes AZ
    Nancy in Sun Lakes AZ says:

    Thanks for taking us on your wonderful trip, Noelle. I enjoyed it so much. I just discovered irises again myself. I loved them when I lived back East, but forgot all about them until this year. I was surprised to learn they grow in the desert and just planted some yesterday. I hope mine are as lovely as the ones you showed us. Those pink peonies are just spectacular also!

  3. Andrea
    Andrea says:

    Great tour Noelle, it is also in time for Mothers' Day, so she is am sure very happy with her kind daughter. I smiled at the menu in the Butterfly garden, we should have seen the butterflies.

  4. Helen
    Helen says:

    Be careful sniffing of a peony. They’re beautiful, but they’re also always covered with ants! They have some kind of symbiotic relationship… a happy marriage between ants and peonies!

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