Garden Frame: Nobody’s Fool

Description:  Resurgent bee balm, Jacob Kline

New flower, not yet at full bloom

Background:  Bee balm has a unique flower. It strikes me as looking like a court jester’s cap, the kind with bells and such. When people passing by pause to ask a question about the garden, invariably, they point to a bee balm bloom and ask what it is. That was my reaction on first seeing a bee balm flower, and its odd appearance is the reason I planted it.

A few years ago, I dug up all the brillant red Jacob Kline bee balm, combed through the soil for small plants, then planted a raspberry-colored bee balm cultivar in the spot where the Jacob Kline had been.

Technical: Pentax 645, SMC Pentax-A 120mm f4 Macro, Portra 400 (expired) shot at ISO 200. (Home developed and scanned)

Comments:  Despite my best efforts, once again, there is a huge patch of Jacob Kline in my yard—five feet high and quite proud of itself. I did my best to get rid of it, and yet it is back—in spades. It has won all the battles, and thus, the war.

Winners write history, or in this case, get their portraits made. It may look like a jester, but clearly, it’s nobody’s fool.


  1. Cline?
    Nice pix and read!

    1. Author


      I spent far too much time searching for the correct spelling. Many plant nurseries and gardening sites use the “K” version. One article used both versions. Since I did not find a consensus, I gave up.

      However should Jacob send me an email, I will, of course, accept his spelling as authoritative. 🙂

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