Washington: If it’s fall, it must be dried flower time

COLOR GUARD: From left, Helen Williams, Lois Snead and Charlotte Laing work this week at Trinity Episcopal Church in Washington, where they’ve been busy for weeks creating floral masterpieces for the church’s 55th annual Dried Flower Sale and House Tour Oct. 15-16. Photo by Roger L. Foster.
COLOR GUARD: From left, Helen Williams, Lois Snead and Charlotte Laing work this week at Trinity Episcopal Church in Washington, where they’ve been busy for weeks creating floral masterpieces for the church’s 55th annual Dried Flower Sale and House Tour Oct. 15-16. Photo by Roger L. Foster.

On Oct. 15-16, hundreds of visitors will come to Rappahannock County, as they have been for more than half a century, for the annual Dried Flower Sale and House Tour sponsored by Trinity Episcopal Church in Washington.

When you look at an uncut field on any one of the beautiful roads in Rappahannock, you think of its treasures. If the bright orange of a butterfly weed in the field makes you want to pull over and grab your gardening gear, or if your garage or attic is now full of hanging flowers dried in the August heat, you must be getting ready for the Trinity churchwomen’s 55th annual sale and tour.

Drying flowers seems a very old-fashioned thing to do, with the abundance of silk flowers available nowadays and a floral section in every supermarket, but finding and preserving nature’s bounty has its own rewards.

Even as I write, the arrangements are being created at Trinity’s parish hall, where the flowers will be on sale the weekend of the tour.

The dried flower arrangements also will decorate the three houses chosen for the tour this year: Rose Hill, a Civil Warera home on U. S. 211 near Massies Corner; Seronera, a Virginia country home in Woodville; and The Inn at Mount Vernon Farm in Sperryville, a new B&B in a very old Rappahannock family home.

The event is Oct. 15-16, from 11 to 5 Saturday and 1 to 5 Sunday. Tickets are only available that weekend and can be purchased at any house on the tour or at Trinity Parish Hall on Gay Street in Washington. Cost for a ticket that includes all three houses as well as tea at the Middleton Inn on Main Street is $ 30. Individual houses can be toured for $10 each (tea is $5 without the block ticket). For more information, call Helen Williams at 540-937-4279 and mark Oct. 15-16 on your calendar now!