You say “ca-mee-lia”; I say “ca-mell-ia.”

Feb 11 2015

by Catherine Hamrick

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAThe camellia, the Deep South’s winter belle, breathes freshly in the dormant garden. Its Asian invasion long forgotten, the camellia japonica is Sweet Home Alabama’s beloved state flower.  No matter how you drawl it, this flower is a cold-weather keeper.

Speaking of pretty blooms and soon-to-be spring . . . now is the time to think of planting season. The New Southern Living Garden Book (2015)—updated for the first time in 10 years—awaits your eager fingertips. In an almost a half-century tradition, Mom’s thumbs wore down her own copy.

The goldenrod, once Alabama's garden flower, was shunned as an allergy-ridden  roadside weed. "Ah-choo!"
The goldenrod, once Alabama’s state flower, was shunned a roadside weed. “Ah-Choo!”

Goldenrod courtesy of Frank Mayfield,




Catherine Hamrick View More Blog Posts from this Author

After a few years as a copywriter for the Southern Living Advertising Department, editor and writer Catherine Hamrick learned her craft in the magazine and book divisions of media giants Time Inc. and Meredith Corporation. She taught writing, literature, public speaking, and business communication at the university level. As a freelancer, Catherine has tackled "almost every topic but porn and physics" and has managed editorial projects or co-authored branded books for imprints such as Southern Living, Oxmoor House, Meredith Books, Better Homes and Gardens, Traditional Home, Country Home, Midwest Living, The Home Depot, Ortho, and Lark Publishing. Certified in social media marketing, she coaches students and professionals in writing resumes, cover letters, and online profiles. She is also a ghostwriter—that is, a professional keeper of secrets. Connect @ChamrickWriter or drop by her blogs: Random Storyteller ( and Catherine Hamrick: Writer, Editor, Social Media Human (

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