Even though I know that Summer officially begins June 20 or 21st, I usually think of it being "summer" around Memorial Day, so decided take a peak at what The Old Farmer's Almanac had to say about it. Nowdays, www.almanac.com is the quick way to check out what that age-old reference has to say. The sun will reach its farthest point north of the equator at 7:09 p.m. on June 20, 2012 in our time zone (EDT). According to the Old Farmer's Almanac: "the word solstice is from the Latin solstitium, from sol (sun) and stitium (to stop), reflecting the fact that the sun appears to stop at this time (and again at the winter solstice)." On the day of summer solstice, the northern hemisphere has more sunlight that any other day. On our calendars, the Summer Solstice is marked as the first day of summer, but some would argue that it is more correctly MID-summer. And climatologists use "meterorological" seasons, with summer beginning on June 1st. No matter, it's summer on June 20th in Ann Arbor! It's great to have the trees and flowers in bloom. The Ann Arbor Summer Festival is in full swing. The 4th of July and then Art Fairs can't be far behind! And in my yard, the geraniums and petunias are adding a burst of color. I love to use traditional annuals for pops of color mixed in with my hostas and other perennials. Later in the summer huge red canna flowers will tower over this scene - right now they are just greenery. If you look closely, you can see the vintage stuff I use as planters. Old tins and wooden boxes make great planters! And they look good next to standard clay pots. An old truck drove into the flower bed. My daughter planted tomatoes, peppers, lettuce and zucchini in an old watering trough. The zucchini is winning.... I got this trough and another one at a spring farm auction - the better one is at the shop right now. It would be great to fill with ice and cold drinks for large gatherings! Another thing we have is a small selection of door mats. This is one I took home with me - have a couple more like it at FOUND. I took these photos around 8:30 tonight and the light is a bit dusky, but I hope you enjoyed seeing MY front yard. Enjoy these long summer days!